Tampa BayWatch – My Thoughts on the Bucs

Posts Tagged ‘Brian Greise

The Race for 53: QB’s

leave a comment »

In the build up to Training Camp and preseason I’m going to take a look at some of the battles for roster spots. First up and possibly the most controversial, whose going to line up under centre in week 1 ?

luke-mccown

Is it his Team ?

The QB position for the Bucs has always been one for debate, and this year it seems even more muddled than normal. The Bucs have 5 QB’s on the roster, including new first round pick Josh Freeman, Brian Greise, Luke McCown, Byron Leftwich and Josh Johnson. Early in pre-season it seemed that the spot belonged to McCown after he was given the big contract extension. When Garcia was let go in Free Agency it seemed even more clear that this was McCowns team. Then, in the weeks leading up to the draft the position got really muddled. Byron Leftwich was signed from the Steelers in FA and the Freeman to the Bucs draft rumours started to gain some traction.

Looking back over the media stories covering McCowns new contract there’s not a great deal that really says ‘Luke is our man and its’ his team’. Raheem was quoted on Buccaneers.com saying

“I know he is looking forward to the opportunity to be an integral part of our quarterback group this season.”

For me that doesn’t sound like a ringing endorsement for your new QB, and it looks like there will be a battle royale in Training Camp for the spot. So despite the big contract was the team ever McCowns or is he just baby sitting until Freeman is ready ? This is where training camp will give a real insight into whose team it is and how quickly Freeman is coming along.

I don’t think that the Bucs will take 5 QB’s into camp and Greise will be the first to be let go. Greise does have the veteran nous but for me he just doesn’t suit the Bucs new scheme and with Leftwich being brought in we no longer need Greises’ veteran skills. Leftwich can provide the veteran nous and seems more suited to the new Jagodzinski style than Greise. Leftwich stepped in well during Roethlisbergers injuries and should be the #2 but who will he be backing up ?

Josh Johnson was definitely a project type pick and was a Gruden pick. Whether he’s got the ability or the team feel he can contribute will dictate whether he stays. Johnson was a draftniks dream sleeper pick, small college player with outstanding stats but never tested at the top levels of college ball. In the new Morris led era I just can’t see Johnson making the roster and expect him to be cut after camp. So that leaves Freeman.

Or His Team

Or His Team ?

Certainly there is a lot of hopes pinned on Freeman, but unless he has a Flacco-esque training camp he’ll be handling a clipboard come week 1. McCown has a lot on his shoulders; the pressure of Freeman and on paper the first 7 games look brutal. If the Bucs struggle there will be a clamour to get Freeman on the field.  If we do need a replacement QB it could be a tough call. It’s hard to judge how a player will react in the heat of the NFL, some say just throw them in (Joe Flacco), others it’s better to learn (Aaron Rodgers). If Freeman is ready all well and good but if not keep him on the sidelines learning rather than taking a beating and let Leftwich run the offence.

The season is still a long way off but this is one area of the team that I’ll be watching with interest.

My 3 for the roster are McCown, Leftwich and Freeman.

Advertisements

Written by UK Bucs Fan

May 10, 2009 at 12:56 pm

Free Agency Moves so far

leave a comment »

Thanks to my ISP fouling up I’ve been without internet for what seems like months 🙂 Rather than creating a load of posts i’ll wrap up the moves and rumours for the Bucs so far.

The Bucs have been fairly active in Free Agency but haven’t landed a big FA signing, even though they are rumoured to be $44 million under the cap. Honestly, I’m happy with the approach we have taken so far and haven’t been drawn into paying over the odds for players on the way down (How much did the Jets pay Alan Faneca !!)

Player Losses:

Greg Spires

I’m surprised at this cut as i thought Spires still had something to offer. He was solid against the run but the Bucs must be confident that Greg White will continue his high level of play and that Wilkerson can provide rotational depth.

Kevin Carter

Carter was always a short term signing and i’m not surprised to see him leave.

Brian Kelly

Kelly has been hankering after a big money contract and it seemed obvious that the Bucs weren’t going to be the team giving him it. Kelly paid out his final year and has met with the Lions and the Giants.

Anthony Becht

Another somewhat surprising move as Becht was used extensively as the blocking TE. Becht may have seen the writing was on the wall when the Bucs signed Jon Gilmore from the Bears. Becht has now signed with the Rams.

Player Additions:

Jeff Faine

A nice pickup for the Bucs. Clearly Centre was seen as major need and the Bucs swooped early in FA to sign Faine. More of a finesse player he’ll provide leadership to Joseph and Sears who will line up either side of him. Despite 66 starts, Faine is only 26 and will have time to grow with the rest of the youngsters on the line. I really like this pickup.

Antoine Cash

A special teams star who missed ’07 with a knee injury i’m not surprised the Bucs wasted no time in resigning Cash.

John Gilmore

A surprise pickup as I felt that Smith and Becht provided a nice 1-2 combo and Stevens was more than useful as a #3. However, the Bucs had different ideas and picked up Gilmore from the Bears. Gilmore looks like he’ll pick up from Becht as the blocking TE but he’s said to have a good set of hands to go alongside his blocking skills. Gilmore also played Special Teams for the Bears and could be uesful depth on returns

Ben Troupe

Not satisfied with 1 new TE the Bucs have also picked up Ben Troupe from the Titans. Another pass catching TE in the Alex Smith mould, the signing of Troupe should spell the end of Jerramy Stevens in Tampa

Jimmy Wilkerson

I just hope that Wilkerson is able to make more of an impact than the last player we picked up from KC. Signed to add depth at the RDE position Wilkerson has the ability to play all along the D-Line and hopefully will add to the rotation upfront.

Brian Griese

When this one was announced i was stunned. The last position that I least expected the Bucs to look as was QB. Luke McCown stepped in admirably when Garcia went down and with Chris Simms getting back to health I thought we were set. However the Bucs see otherwise and have brought in Greise. However i wonder if this has been done with a trade in mind ? Top of the potential tradees would be Chris Simms who the Bucs maybe looking to offload. Greise brings a nice vet backup and will be fighting for the #3 job in camp

Leon Joe, Matt McCoy, Teddy Lehman

Loads of Linebackers to provide depth and competition in camp… Really can’t see a lot to say here 🙂