The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were able to come away with an upset win in Week 1 against the Minnesota Vikings with Baker Mayfield at the helm. And apparently, a big reason for the win may have been because of Mayfield picking up on the Vikings’ defensive signals.
Mayfield didn’t have the best day individually, throwing for just 173 yards to go along with two passing touchdowns. But he made enough plays down the stretch to get the job done.
One reason for that may be that Mayfield was picking up on the Vikings’ defensive signals, at least according to Buccaneers’ starting running back Rachaad White.
“I just remember Bake came in the locker room, literally at halftime, he said, ‘I got it. We got all these signals,’” White said of Mayfield during an appearance on the Buccaneers Radio Network, via JoeBucsFan.com. “We’re in there talking as an offense and he’s like, ‘I know all these signals. If they do this, they’re going into Cover 2. If they do this, they’re going into Cover 3. Every time I alert this and they do this signal, they’re dropping back to this.’ And I’m like, ‘Wow, that’s amazing.’ I was just listening to him and we were listening to him and we just kind of understood.”
Fans had varying opinions of this admission from White, as some thought that the Buccaneers should have scored more than 10 points in the second half if they knew the signals, while others thought this was a very smart move from Mayfield.
I liked seeing the chess match between Baker and the Vikings defense. Even with a deafening crowd he was making moves and getting the snap off
— Robert Graffy (@RGraffy) September 12, 2023
So we knew what defense they'd be in and we still could only get 10 second half points?
— Snook⚡🏴☠️☀️ (@SnookTB) September 12, 2023
Bakers gonna Bake!
(Or, Experience Matters!) https://t.co/xu8vG0taad
— Chris Maconi (@chrismaconi) September 12, 2023
But only managed 20 points against the worse defense in the NFL
— Eric P (@kpoint8118) September 13, 2023
And he only put up 20 knowing the signals?!!!
— Daren Foy (@DarenFoy) September 13, 2023
If Mayfield did indeed truly know the signals, then that is a very smart move to relay that to his team at the half. It is also a huge problem for Vikings defensive coordinator Brian Flores to have a team figure out their signals in the first game of the year.
And if the Buccaneers were able to pick up on this, then surely the Philadelphia Eagles, the Vikings’ Week 2 opponent on Thursday Night Football, will be able to do the same thing when they look at film before the game.