Quiet Gruber “Did His Own Lawn Work”

June 6th, 2012

Former Bucs left tackle Paul Gruber (1988-1999) will be introduced as a Ring of Honor inductee later this morning at One Buc Palace, so Joe was curious what Gruber’s seven-seasons Bucs teammate, Ian Beckles, would have to say about Gruber during the Ron and Ian Show on WDAE-AM 620 this morning.

Beckles described Gruber as “quiet to a fault” and a “homebody” who regularly attended church, never joked around, never cursed, rarely hung out with teammates and took many pages of notes in team meetings. Beckles also said Gruber was a man of routine — “for 7 years he had the same thing for lunch” — and was in the weight room year round.

Beckles said his daughter was a friend of Gruber’s daughter and Beckles often was dropping off his kid at Gruber’s house, where he’d see Gruber toiling in the yard doing his own lawn work during football season. (This really stood out for Joe. How NFL players, All-Pros no less, are breaking their backs doing yard work.)

On the field, Beckles said Gruber was “a finesse player” with incredible feet. And Beckles said he didn’t truly realize how great Gruber was until Beckles moved on to play for the Eagles and had to play with lesser tackles.

19 Responses to “Quiet Gruber “Did His Own Lawn Work””

  1. Meh Says:

    I don’t even do my own lawnwork and I make a lot less than an NFL player!

  2. Scott Says:

    At one time I heard that Gruber had played in more losses than any other player in NFL history. I wonder if that is still true?

  3. Garv Says:

    Again, I’m very pleased with this choice for the Ring of Honor and any long time Buccaneer fan should be.

    Congratulations Paul Gruber!

  4. McSiD Says:

    Wow, Ian is turning in to a disgruntled ass. Get over it.

  5. jvato24 Says:

    Wonder what he had for lunch ??

  6. espo Says:

    He’ll be joined by members of the 97 team. I can’t wait.

  7. Rob In Orlando Says:

    Awesome choice! Gruber had a great career cut short by injuries. If he could have stayed healthy a few more years and had a better team around him, he could have made the Hall Of Fame. This is a great reward for him and the right choice by the Glazers. Go Bucs!

  8. THE DUKE Says:

    Ian is a disgruntled clown, who has to mention once an hour he played “pro ball”

  9. Fritz50 Says:

    “Wow, Ian is turning in to a disgruntled ass.”

    Sorry, I didn’t get the negative connotations from Beckles’ comments that you did. Just wondering what set you off.

    Mostly agree that Beckles is sophmoric & mostly negative about the Bucs, just not seeing any here.

  10. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    Yeah, not getting the Beckles hate here. He reveres Gruber.

  11. Fritz50 Says:

    My take on the choice of Gruber is mostly positive. I think I would have chosen Doug Williams 1st, not cause of stats, but more because Williams had a bigger effect on how well the team, as a whole, did. Simply put, without Williams & his receivers ( House & Giles), the team he was on didn’t win. On the other hand, it IS really neat that someone who worked so hard & so well, for as long as he did, is finally getting some well deserved recognition.

  12. sharkcoasttactical.com Says:

    Ian said yesterday that he thought Mayberry should get the nod over Gruber because Gruber hadn’t been to any ProBowls.

    I just don’t understand 620. Big Ass signal and the best the can deliver is the Birth Day Challenge and Dumeig bitching in the afternoon.

  13. Miguel Grande Says:

    Doug Williams was the heart and soul of the young Buccaneer franchise. He was an amazing raw talent and leader who brought this new team not only into respectability but made other teams fear us. He was a great character guy off the field. He was just starting to mature when the Buc’s wallet got in the way.

    In the year that the Super Bowl was to be played in Tampa Stadium for the first time, Doug’s young wife suddenly and mysteriously died. As Doug struggled to overcome, the Buc’s ownership tried to take advantage and force him into a very bad contract dooming him into being the lowest paid QB in the NFL for the rest of his career. He walked, signing with the Oklahoma Outlaws.

    The Buc’s had drafted him because he was a black QB and they thought he would be so grateful, that they wouldn’t have to pay him. The same reason why they drafted Booker Reese with their #1 pick. The same reason they drafted Bo Jackson #1 and then sabotaged his baseball career. Forcing him to spurn the Buc’s forever. They didn’t have to pay up.

    The Buc’s owner was so cheap and evil that he screwed his own family from the grave.

    To say that Doug’s stats were sub par and not a great QB, is like saying that JFK was an average president because he couldn’t complete one term and couldn’t stop a bullet.

    Doug’s only perceived flaw was that he was a proud black man pioneering a previously white only territory. He was incapable of kissing management’s asses.

    The Ring of Honor should be dedicated to the once in a lifetime athletes that we have the honor to experience maybe once or twice in our lifetimes and to somehow inject their aura into the normal every game NFL experience.

    Players like Gruber should be included and honored for their service as well but until Doug’s name and number are on the ring, its a meaningless honor. The supreme honor would be to enshrined on the Ring with LeRoy Selmon #63 and Doug Williams #12, not instead of them.

    Until Doug Williams is in the Ring of Honor, it should be known as the Ring of Cheap Backdoor Politics.

  14. Brad Says:

    After watching Grubers press conference I am really happy the Bucs selected him. Someone that quietly went about his business and did a great job in the process deserves the recognition. He’s such a humble person it made me proud to watch him accept the honor. Ian is and always will be an arse. Gruber even mentioned Beckles by name as a gret teammate but to have ian stab him in the back is just classless and gives me another great reason not to listen to the crap that’s on from 9-12. Ian does not only recognize talent now he didn’t even recognize playing beside it.. No wonder he’s on the radio and not associated with a team.

  15. Rrsrq Says:

    Don’t get the Ian hate either, I thought his comments according the article was pretty good and gave insight to a consistent quiet guy. It is not a disgrace to call Gruber a finesse player, just his style and it worked for him. Joe Thomas of the Browns is considered a finesse tackle with pro bowls on a consistently bad team. I wonder why the hate on Ian, he said the same thing about the Bucs players last season as many of us were saying.

  16. Heath Says:

    This is quite a study in how bias works. Those that dislike Ian can read that article and surmise that he is trashing Gruber. It would be interesting to post the exact same article but attribute the quotes to someone viewed as less “negative” and check out the comments.

  17. Fritz50 Says:

    Miguel Grande

    Wasn’t trying to hate on Williams. As I said, I’d have picked him. The Stats comment was simply to note that he might not have had the best numbers compared to some of the all time great QBs out there, but that I’d pick him due to his impact for the team, much the same as you did. Just didn’t want to write another epic in here. As fas as the CHEAP, Racist, a..hole owner you spoke of, his death was the, hands down, absolute, 100 %, best thing that ever happened to this team. All anyone needed, to appreciate the Glazers, was a few years watching the Culverhouse(may he rot in..) Bucs.

  18. Oahubuc Says:

    He’s a champion in my mind. I truthfully don’t give a damn how many “Pro Bowls” he’s been in. The man totally embodies what I want to see out there. Nose to the grindstone, kicking everyone’s butt week after week after week after year after year. Great choice, and keep it up with Wilder in ’13. Same type of guy.

  19. RustyRhino Says:

    Congratulations Paul Gruber!