Savvy Alterraun VernerMarch 18th, 2014
Yes, most Bucs fans will have their starting quarterback, Josh McCown, under the microscope when he takes snaps this summer. And for good reason. An offense can only go as far as a quarterback can lead it. If a quarterback struggles, then so too will the offense.
So Joe totally gets why Bucs fans will hawk McCown. Joe also believes another player will be scrutinized, new cornerback Alterraun Verner. Good bad or indifferent, he is the guy replacing all-world cornerback Darrelle Revis.
While Verner was a Pro Bowl player last year, he isn’t Revis. Who is?
Last week, while appearing with popular sports radio host Adam Schein of “Schein on Sports,” heard on Mad Dog Radio, part of the family of sports channels heard exclusively on SiriusXM Radio, Bucs general manager Jason Licht didn’t dis Revis but said Verner may just be the perfect Lovie Smith kind of player.
Adam Schein: We had Alterraun Verner on the show just before free agency. He said his primary focus in free agency was finding a team ready to win. What attracted you to Alterraun Verner?
Jason Licht: His style of play. He’s a tough guy. He is extremely smart, both on and off the field but you can tell on the field how smart he is with his instinct and his positioning and how he anticipates. He’s just a smart player. But, No. 1, his ball skills. You can ask Lovie any day of the week what he likes in his defensive backs and he says the most important thing is to take the ball away from his opponent. He had five interceptions. That’s a tremendous thing to have and that’s why he went to the Pro Bowl.
This is good to learn. Chatting in person, Joe was very impressed by Verner; he’s a really sharp guy. Just like Revis.
For better or worse, fair or unfair, Verner will be held to the Revis standard. After all, the Bucs did not have to release Revis. If Verner has a less-than Pro Bowl season, then Bucs fans will logicially wonder, WWRD?
What would Revis do?