Some good Bucs news with JPP returning to the sideline. One step closer. We talk about ex-Bucs players movement in the league, why Ezekiel is not worth the money, the defensive line issues with the Cowboys, and good football movies.
Ralph’s watched the film. Hear his verdict. We discuss the offensive line performance (was it offensive?), the defense, pleasant preseason surprises and the underwhelming. Plus, Andrew Luck retires, Mike Evans is Molly’s favorite person, and more.
The Buccaneers Week 3 matchup against the Browns remains the
most highly anticipated game of our preseason. We’ll get to see the starters
for an extended period, although for how long is still TBD. We have high hopes
that the Bucs starters will put on a good show nonetheless.
Bruce Arians came out this week boasting about the offensive line’s request to play a full half. BA disagreed with the request, but didn’t completely rule it out. Based on the line’s performance so far this preseason (particularly Donovan Smith), I’m skeptical it was the o-line’s request and not BA’s decision to give them the extra reps, while at the same time allowing them to save face with the public.
Mike Evans won’t play with a suspected quad injury after
being held out of practice this week. We’ll get a good look at what the rest of
the receivers can do, particularly Breshad Perriman (a former Brown, btw). We’ll
also get to see how the coaching staff has valued the lower-tier guys currently
on the bubble.
The anticipation for the Browns is also high. Some would like to see retribution for the Bucs’ victory over the Browns last season. There’s excitement amongst the fanbase for the team led by Baker Mayfield. However, once again the team is rebuilding and one unit yet to be determined is the linebacker corps. A piece by Jeff Risdon on Brownswire.com breaks down the battle:
Only two in the squad, Joe Schobert and Christian Kirksey,
are safe. The team hasn’t said whether they’ll keep five or six linebackers, so
there’s potentially only three spots up for grabs.
Fifth round pick Mack Wilson is a lock to make the roster,
and is already listed behind Christian Kirksey on the depth chart. That leaves
just two spots.
Sione Takitaki is a good run stuffer and the best blitzer on
the team, but a lingering hamstring injury is a strike against him.
Ray-Ray Armstrong was brought back to the team because of
his special teams prowess, but has also shown improvement in his run defense.
Former Buccaneer Adarius Taylor was picked up by the Browns
on a two-year, $15M contract. However, he’s been outplayed by almost every
other guy in the group. He, too, has an upside with his special teams play, but
will it be enough to make the cut? He’s certainly on the bubble.
Undrafted rookie Willie Harvey has shown flashes in OTAs and
on film, but is probably not making the roster.
Anthony Stubbs is auditioning for the last spot on the
practice squad and hasn’t had much opportunities during the preseason.
Undrafted rookie Dedrick Young is likely not making the cut.
Another squad that’s piqued the interest of Browns fans is the punting/kicking unit. Well, really just one guy – The Scottish Hammer. Alias: Jamie Gillan.
Gillan’s family is British, but he grew up in Scotland, hence the name “Scottish Hammer”. His father, a member of the Royal Air Force, got stationed in Maryland when Gillan was in high school. A former rugby player, he’s wowed coaches with his powerful leg since then. His ability to literally flatten footballs has become legend amongst Browns fans. While only brought in to compete with Britton Colquitt for the punting job, fans would like to see him kick in this game – just to see what he can do.
That will all be up to Head Coach Freddie Kitchens.
Kitchens, like many NFL coaches, has a connection to Bruce Arians. Kitchens was
a holdover from Ken Whisenhunt’s staff at Arizona when BA took over, serving as
BA’s quarterback coach from 2013-2016, then as runningbacks coach in 2017.
The Buccaneers Week 2 matchup against the Dolphins was by
far one of the most exciting preseason games I’ve ever seen. I wouldn’t be
surprised if this matchup against the Browns beats it.
The Bucs will match up against the Browns this week. What we expect to see from the starters. Mike Evans is sidelined with a suspected quad injury. The Browns and the Scottish Hammer. A battle is a’brewing in Cleveland. Find out which position group is duking it out. Bruce Arians has a connection in Cleveland. Bucs sign another former teammate of Vita Vea. The o-line asks for more snaps. Justin Evans returns. What we learned from Jimmy Garoppolo’s preseason performance.
Besides the obvious standouts in preseason weeks 1 and 2 there have been a few unheralded players that should be pointed out. There are also a few players who should be called out to step up their game. Of course, Tanner Hudson, Ryan Griffen, and Spencer Schnell (in one game against the Steelers) are the obvious standouts. Without the coaches film it is very difficult, if not impossible, to rate the defensive secondary or the wide receivers. Actually, it is a crap shoot to rate anybody without the coaches film. With that being said, here are some players who have made an impact for explosive plays or doing really well for the few snaps they have gotten.
We review the week 2 victory against the Dolphins. Ralph talks surprises in David Kenney and Mazzi Wilkins. Bucs linebackers shine this week, especially Minter, Bond and Harris. Ralph does a 180 on Ryan Griffin. Andre Ellington drops in favor as Dare practices with the ones. Cole Boozer has a rough game. We learn more about the tight end role in this offense.
The Buccaneers match up against the Miami Dolphins after two days of joint practice. Controversies abound in the Dolphins’ organization. Warren Sapp weighs in on Gerald McCoy’s comments. Plus, Sapp’s high praise for Todd Bowles. Bucs bring in WR Emanuel Hall. Is the injury culture moving out of Tampa?
We eat a little crow on our initial analysis of the Steelers game. Ryan Griffin and our defensive line depth may have been better than we initially gave the guys credit for. The Dolphins join the Buccaneers at camp this week in advance of our Friday matchup. Which former Buccaneers make a return to town? With the decimation of our secondary, particularly the safeties, Buccaneers work out veteran safeties this week, signing former Bronco Darian Stewart. Plus, we discuss Ralph’s secret fantasy file (fantasy football, that is).
Bucs fans everywhere rejoiced when the team acquired Bruce Arians as its new head coach. I’ve never seen optimism this high in my ten years as a fan. I’ve never felt this much optimism myself. However, there’s still a healthy amount of skepticism amongst the fanbase. I can’t say I blame them; we’ve all been burned before. But I’m here to tell you, Bucs fans, we’ve never seen a head coach like Bruce Arians.
The charisma. The style. The foul mouth. What’s not to love? But none of that compares to BA’s sexiest attribute: he’s a winner.
Preseason Week 1 at the Pittsburgh Steelers was characterized by penalties, penalties, penalties. The youngry secondary was a no-show. First team offense moved down the field efficiently. Evan Smith has a terrible game. We question how Ryan Griffin has a job. Bucs return to practice this week, where they’ll compete against the Miami Dolphins. Bucs make some roster moves due to injuries and performance. Wide receivers coach Darryl Drake passes away at the age of 62. Drake coached at Arizona for BA from 2013-2017 and was currently with the Steelers. Chandler Catanzaro “retires”.