I have long known that you can't please everyone. You just can't. I received a perfect example yesterday during the Bucs game.
Fans coming at me on Twitter are upset because the Bucs were winning... winning!!! A few were also upset because I, as a local member of the media, hadn't "done my job" and gotten head coach Greg Schiano fired yet. I'll get to that ridiculous notion in minute.
Tampa Bay was terrible to start the season. That's a fact. They started the year 0-8 and the playoffs were gone in the blink of an eye. But, since then Tampa Bay has actually played pretty good football.
The Bucs are one of four teams in the NFC to win four of their last five games (three of them are in the Bucs' division - Tampa Bay, Carolina, New Orleans). Only the Philadelphia Eagles are hotter. They've won five straight games.
The glass-half-empty fan will see that streak and say, "Yeah, well, they are beating weak teams." You can't really argue with that. The combined record of the teams the Bucs have played over the past five weeks is 30-35. Compare that to the overall winning percentage of teams that handed them their two-month winless start (.625) and that argument may hold some water.
Here's my counter: Does it matter? Do fans want to see wins? Or do you want to see more losing?
I don't care who they play. If your team is winning, life is good. Wins are always better than losses. Don't believe me? Listen to your Pro Bowl, $16 million super-star cornerback:
"I remember you know when we were in a slump of losing," Darrelle Revis said after the Bucs beat the Buffalo Bills 27-6 on Sunday. "I was just saying, 'One win will change everything.' Once we got our first win, I think this team really got used to, 'Hey, hey, we know I'm to win now.'
"We just kept on rolling. We got three in a row and we actually lost one last week and actually won this one. So, it's just once you get on a winning streak that momentum can go for a while."
Do Bucs fans have a problem with that? Do you want them to lose? I've heard the argument about tanking the season to get better draft picks.
Are you kidding me?
If you want the Bucs to keep losing so the team owners are forced to fire Greg Schiano, then there are more questions you need to answer.
The 0-8 start stunk. I get it. I was there for all of the games, too. It wasn't fun. There was chaos. I expected Schiano to get fired. Who survives that kind of losing? The Texans just fired their coach after a long losing streak. It's very common. Why has Schiano survived?
It's because his players are playing hard for him and they are started to win. You cry, 'Great! Mediocrity! Whoo-hoo!' and I get that frustration.
Their only loss in the last five games was to a Panthers team that had won seven in a row. The previous five times the Tampa Bay franchise started a season 0-8, their best record was 3-13. Schiano's Bucs just won their fourth game yesterday with three still to play.
Is it a great record? No. Is it better than 0-12? Absolutely.
"We support Coach Schiano and we don't know what's going to happen in the future or anything with anybody on this team, including me," said Revis. "We just have to sit here and execute the game plan. We've got three games left now so we've got to just continue to make as much as we can out of this year and hopefully we can win the next three and finish out strong because that momentum it can lead over to next year."
Will Schiano be here? Nobody knows and nobody can do anything to change the Glazer's minds either way. The team owners will make that decision at the end of the year. It's a financial and performance combo-decision.
Schiano says it almost every week: "It's a performance based league."
He's right. Like him or not, after this streak he has the third-highest win percentage in franchise history by a head coach.
Schiano's future will depend a lot on the next three weeks. Can they continue to win? Do you even want them to?