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After letting Browns come back, Bucs defense had a team dinner to get on same page

Mike Florio and Myles Simmons assess if the current leaders of the NFC South, NFC West, AFC East and AFC North will be able to hold on for the remainder of the season.

The Buccaneers defense kept the Browns offense in check for much of last Sunday, but they couldn’t close out the game in winning fashion.

Cleveland drove for a game-tying touchdown in the final minutes of the fourth quarter and then won the game on an overtime touchdown run by running back Nick Chubb. It’s not the first time that the Bucs defense has had a letdown late in a game this season, but linebacker Devin White would like it to be the last time.

White and fellow linebacker Lavonte David organized a dinner for the defense a day after the game in order to make sure everyone is on the same page as they move into the final weeks of the season. White noted how close the team was in 2020 because COVID restrictions led them to spend a lot of time together at the facility and hoped the dinner will helpe the group “jell a little more so we’ll play even harder for each other.”

“Me and Lavonte organized that just to bring the guys closer, just to be able to lean on one another and trust one another, just talk about the tenacity we’ve got to play with — you know, everything that we’ve got to do to help this team win,” White said, via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. “Because at the end of the day we’ve got a great defense and we want to show it for four quarters and 60 minutes.”

The issues with the Buccaneers offense have drawn a lot of attention over the course of the season and seven punts in the second half and overtime last weekend make it clear they have a lot of work to do on that side of the ball. That’s not stopping the defense from striving for better results and the unit will get a chance to show that they can play a complete game against the Saints on Monday night.