So far we’ve discussed the Defensive Backs (a very low need) and Linebackers (a position that could be addressed), and now its time for an area of the Bucs that without a doubt WILL be worked on, as early as the first round. The Defensive Line has been a sore spot on the Bucs defense since the end of the 2005 season. Simeon Rice was never the same again, and his ’06 season was a disaster. Since then, bit players like Kevin Carter, Chris Hovan have been sent here to try to shore up the quality and pressure, but always with the same result: No Available talent.
Now, in 2010 the Bucs addressed its bread and butter position for the first time, by taking not one, but two defensive tackles; Brian Price and Gerald McCoy. This year, in the 2011 NFL Draft, defensive end will be the key to addressing the Bucs remaining weakness. In addition to the two high round draft picks, the Bucs have some young talent that can contribute and perhaps even develop into top quality talent.
Not to end up lost in the info, is the coaching the Bucs will be giving their young d-line players. How much of Sapp, Culpepper, Rice, Spires, etc have former Bucs line coach Rod Marinelli to thank? In 2011, Keith Millard will bring the same intensity he brought to the field as a lineman himself.
These are some of the main players in the game-
- Gerald McCoy- His rookie year was cut short by injury, but he was starting to come on when he got hurt. He got 2 sacks in the Baltimore game and 4 passes defended along with 2 forced fumbles.
- Brian Price is in danger of being a casualty of the NFL. He was injured early in the offseason, and it got worse. He has faster ‘off the ball’ speed than anyone, but it didn’t show because of pain. Of all people he has the most to lose from this lock out.
- Roy Miller- Multi-talented run stopper, Miller is capable of doing it all. Sacked Brees in the season finale’, going into his third season where he is practically an old man there!
- Tim Crowder- Finished with three sacks last year, but got two of them in week 2 at Carolina. Had three tackles against Seattle during the playoff push.
- Styles G White- The question here- which White will show up in 2011.
- Frank Okam DT- 350 Pounds is in for run support. Had 6 tackles against the Seahawks.
- Al Woods is another Bucs player with considerable upside. The Bucs are high on his motor, he was taken off the Steelers practice squad.
- Michael Bennett filled in for McCoy when he was hurt. Over his career, he was used at both End and Tackle.
- Kyle Moore seems to be someones project they wont give up on. He seems to consistently underachieve yet is rewarded with starting.
Now you have the minor players that can go either way; George Johnson, Alex Magee, Doug Worthington.
With the history of success in practice squad pickups, Mark Dominik and Raheem Morris have been golden in that department. But last years starters are probably doomed to be the future depth this team needs.
SO How Will The Bucs Draft?