IRVING, TX - OCTOBER 26: Long snapper Louis-Philippe Ladouceur #91 of the Dallas Cowboys during play against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Texas Stadium on October 26, 2008 in Irving, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
On the surface, Tampa Bay's defense won't look much different on Sunday from past years.
Jim Bates has done little in the way of shaking things up in the Tampa 2, the team's version of a 4-3 set, which relies on a strong front and capable secondary; but Bates is a lot more aggressive, and creative, with respect to blitz packages after the snap--particularly with the linebacking corps--than was his predecessor Monte Kiffin, who left after last year to join his son's staff in Knoxville.
It's a change Bates will hope to exhibit on Sunday, by getting Tony Romo acquainted with the turf at Raymond James.
"That's what you have to talk to the D-line about, relentless rush," Head Coach Raheem Morris said in today's St. Petersburg Times. "But it's got to be other people. Anybody's who got a chance to rush him can't stop, can't give up."
Bates had high praise for Romo, and said that applying pressure is a must for Tampa's defense.
"Tony is an excellent quarterback. Two years ago he had as good a year as anybody in the league," Bates said to The Times. "He does a great job of scrambling. And he has the arm to make all the throws. … There's nothing he can't do."
"We'll get after him," Bates added. "We've got to find a way."