Bucs' offense must regroup

If the Buccaneers don't increase their production on offense, they'll be hard pressed to make the playoffs.

Updated: November 3, 2003, 2:41 PM ET
By By Darrell Trimble | NFL Insider
Jon Gruden is considered an offensive mastermind, and although the Buccaneers' offense didn't set the world on fire last year, it did improve as the season progressed. This season, Bucs fans were hoping Gruden's offense would become one of the league's best.

Early on, the Bucs' offense was indeed clicking on all cylinders. After scoring a combined 26 points against the Eagles and Panthers, two of the toughest defenses the NFL has to offer, Tampa Bay averaged 33.7 points a game over its next three contests. But since then, Tampa has struggled to put points on the board. In fact, outside of those games Gruden's squad has averaged only 12.6 points a game.

On Sunday, turnovers played a large role in the Bucs' inability to score. They were in Saints territory all day but missed a field goal and turned the ball over six times. But this wasn't the only time they had their problems. It might be turnovers one week and untimely penalties the next, meaning the Bucs still have a long way to go on offense, especially with the injuries to the defense.