Channeling Simeon Rice

March 13th, 2014
New Bucs DE Michael Johnson wants to be the next Simeon Rice.

New Bucs DE Michael Johnson wants to be the next Simeon Rice.

Yes, the Bucs had a fine defense with a strong pass rusher in now Hall of Famer Warren Sapp. And that defense became legendary when it added defensive end Simeon Rice.

With Sapp creating havoc in the middle and Rice virtually unblockable on pass plays from the right side, that defense put the fear of God into opposing quarterbacks, from Brett Favre to Chris Redman. To give Bucs fans an idea how long it has been since the Bucs could regularly breathe on a quarterback, it is since Rice himself (involuntarily) left the Bucs, with Rice screaming that Chucky was “a scumbag” on his way out the door.

Why, it’s been so long since the Bucs had a decent edge rusher, going through players both drafted and bought, there’s a good chance fans won’t know what to make of a Bucs defensive end putting a quarterback on the ground more than a handful of times a season.

Newly signed Michael Johnson hopes to change that. When Joe spoke with him yesterday about how the Bucs were still trying to replace Rice, Johnson’s eyes lit up.

Not only does he know who Rice was, he wants to be like Rice.

“I have watched tape of Simeon Rice,” said Johnson, who was still at Georgia Tech when Rice played his last snap with the Bucs. “He was great at [planting quarterbacks]. I want to bring that same presence down here, no matter how I do it. I am excited to team up with Gerald McCoy and AC [Adrian Clayborn] and Da’Quan [Bowers] and all of those guys. We’re going to get after [quarterbacks]. I’m excited.”

Johnson, who came across as a really intelligent guy, a smooth talker, also discussed how he believes he can lead the way to a winning season. Johnson referenced how, as a member of the Bengals, the team went from the Bungles to an annual playoff team and why his low sacker number from last year is very, very deceiving.

Hear lots of Johnson yesterday by clicking on the orange button below, courtesy of Joe’s accomplices as WDAE-AM 620.

30 Responses to “Channeling Simeon Rice”

  1. flmike Says:

    Amazing how almost everyone who ever played for Chucky thinks the same thing about him….

  2. Espo Says:

    Amazing how so many fans discount the fact we would not have a championship without him and do nothing but bash the guy.

  3. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Being a fan frim the beginning and going through being a true laughing stock of the NFL and the subject of late night talk show hosts….I will be forever grateful from the bottom of my heart for Jon Gruden and our Chanpionship. I hope its not the only one I’ll experience in my lifetime but if it is…..How sweet it was.
    I’ve got my hopes up that we are finally building a championship team again.

  4. bucrightoff Says:

    Simeon averaged 10 sacks a season before joining the Bucs. Johnson is averaging just over 5 a season right now. Hopefully Johnson can get there but Simeon was already a legit pass rush threat before we signed him. Banking on hope and potential more with Johnson.

  5. bigpoppabuc Says:

    Yeah I’m not buying it yet… I’m not buying anything at this point. Lovie and Licht’s “plan” is not to impressing me so far. I lot of cheddar thrown out there for some what if players. What if Johnson could be the next rice. What if McCown could be the next Johnson? What if Lovie falls flat on his face trying to be too much like Dungy?

  6. Joe Dunn Says:

    Espo Says:
    March 13th, 2014 at 6:46 am

    Amazing how so many fans discount the fact we would not have a championship without him and do nothing but bash the guy.

    Heard from a media person that Rice was one of the biggest Aholes in locker room…but he COULD play for sure.

    Here is the scoop on Gruden – – – Yes he got everybody the RING! Great job!!

    But he is like the fun girlfriend that was a blast to take to your high school reunion – – -but when you actually live with her 24/7 she wears you out with her DRAMA.

    He threw players under the bus, he lied, bullshitted, mis-managed and RARELY made the playoffs after that one golden season. Do you know HOW MANY playoff WINS Chucky got after the Super Bowl? Pretty sure the answer is Z E R O …..that is my case for why he was fired.

  7. Buc Fan #237 Says:

    Good point bpoppabuc… what if McCown stinks it up and Lovie stubbornly sticks with McCown because of the money invested in him? That would be bad.

  8. DallasBuc Says:

    Let’s slow down with the Rice talk. That dude is a legend. Johnson has a long ass way to go.

  9. Eric Says:

    And Rice never did anything with another team after being cut by the “scumbag”

    Johnson was rated second best DE available.
    Verner best cb
    McDonald started for Super Bowl champs

    Outstanding haul so far and not done yet. Perhaps we could let the man finish free agency and the draft before burying him?

    Please explain what free agents Lovie should have signed that would have turned us around in one day. Did I miss something, was Simeone Rice in his prime available cheaply in free agency this year?

  10. Sapp, STFU Says:

    Is Simeon still local? Perhaps he can be a consultant, assistant coach.

  11. tha truth is... Says:

    I hope this signing pans out.

  12. bucrightoff Says:

    I’d counter by reminding Eric that every team that has “won” free agnecy recently hasn’t gone to the playoffs. These are signings that we can’t judge for a while, but recent history strongly suggests signing a lot of free agents, even one’s who supposedly looked like great signings, doesn’t work out. If you look at the NFC’s best (Seattle, San Francisco, Green Bay) all built from the ground up.

  13. Eric Says:


    Lovie hasn’t had a draft yet.

    You want us to sit out free agency this year?

  14. bucrightoff Says:

    Sit out? I mean they should make some moves for sure, but this is building the roster through FA, which is a mistake. I’d prefer a more draft heavy focus on building the team because as we can see that’s how the best teams do it.

  15. Dreambig Says:

    All we can do is be is hopeful that these guys pan out. Established NFL starters are hard to find, elite players, among the best at what they do are extremely rare. We just threw away an elite player, last years #1 pick and this years 4th round pick for a mixed bag of starters, backup players and potential. Verner will be an ok replacement for Revis, but with no gain. I hope brand new baby GM Licht knows what he is doing and this jettisoning unique talent for cash scheme works out. If we go back to the worst pass defense in the league that is really going to suck!

  16. Eric Says:

    What is the distinction between making some moves and building the team through free agency?

    Lovie hasn’t traded any draft picks and he will be playing McCoy, David, Martin etc. this year.

    And participating in the draft.

  17. bucrightoff Says:

    When you might see as many as 1/3 or more of the starters next year coming from FAs we signed, that’s building a roster. Sign a starter or two but mostly focus on depth signings.

  18. bucrightoff Says:

    Or do what the Eagles just did and get Sproles. Hell of a pickup for them, perfect fit at a low cost.

  19. Eric Says:

    Focus on depth signings? For a team that went 4-12?

    Keep starting the same guys?

    Guess we will have to disagree on that one.

  20. bucrightoff Says:

    Right, but at 4-12 doesn’t that say we’re a long way from contending? I know people want to win now and all, but I’d rather win for 10-15 years by building it right. Wouldn’t it be nice to look like Seattle or San Francisco, who will be contending for titles for years? Making these moves tells me Lovie isn’t patient enough to build it up. We’ll see.

  21. Bucnjim Says:

    Needed free agency big time! Good moves by the new coach and GM. The Bucs were stuck holding only five draft picks this year. Unfortunately; they have little to trade for additional picks. Would be nice if they could make a move and pick up two more early round picks though.

  22. OB Says:

    Joe most people forget that Payton Manning and Drew Brees were free agents, so they can make a difference

  23. bucrightoff Says:

    Just a pet peeve, but its Sean Payton, and Peyton Manning.

  24. Celly Says:


    “These are signings that we can’t judge for a while, but recent history strongly suggests signing a lot of free agents, even one’s who supposedly looked like great signings, doesn’t work out.”

    2013 Kansas City Chiefs…

  25. Jon Says:

    Just wonder why Zimmer didn’t want Johnson after Allen’s contract expired. 5 sacks a year? Clayborn does that. Verner is good. Like that a lot

  26. BrianW Says:

    Saying to build through the draft is all well and good, BUT… It takes forever :( also, FA and draft are not mutually exclusive. You only have or can acquire so many picks per year. They are very limited resource. Add in that half or more of draft picks flop, regardless if who picks them. 32 teams try to build through the draft every year! FA compliments your base ideally, but there is no such thing as signing too many FA’s unless you mortgage your future into cap problems. We haven’t done that so carry on Lovie.

  27. Joe Dunn Says:

    Everybody needs to remember that in the NFL many times a loss, or a win, is because of 1, 2 or 3 plays. You make them, you win, you dont, you lose.

    Bucs were in the game in many of those losses and SHOULD have won 4 or more of them. 8-8 and we wouldnt be freaking but it is what it is.

    Even with lots of upgrades via FA and draft, they STILL have to make the plays when they are there. I am not expecting going 10-6 or better quite yet. Yep, I am REALISTIC. But love the Lovie hire. It will get better

  28. bucrightoff Says:

    The Chiefs signed exactly 3 free agents as starters last year. We’ve already signed 6 starters. Not even comparble. The Chiefs did what you’re supposed to do in free agency, they augmented their roster. We are building ours and not even done yet. We could see as many as 9 new starters from free agency. That’s crazy.

  29. bigpoppabuc Says:

    It is bucrightoff, and I’m worried because our current approach has never been successful in the NFL. Movie and Lucht have put a lot of pressure on themselves.

  30. BoJim Says:

    bigpoppabuc Said::

    “It is bucrightoff, and I’m worried because our current approach has never been successful in the NFL. Movie and Lucht have put a lot of pressure on themselves.”

    They need to win now. The fans and the Glazers expect it.

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