“It Is A Big Area Of Concern”July 28th, 2014
The Bucs and left guard Carl Nicks parting ways Friday shocked few Bucs fans. And it shouldn’t have.
Nicks had played sparingly in the last two seasons, his only years with the Bucs, and rather than wearing a helmet, Nicks often was seen wearing a floppy hat watching OTAs and minicamp from the sidelines this spring.
The same folks who were surprised Nicks couldn’t make a go of it are the same people who are surprised it gets hot in Florida in July.
While the Bucs, publicly, are offering a calm front and supportive words, saying whoever on the roster secures the two starting guard spots will be fine, Woody Cummings of The Tampa Tribune sees a far different reality. Deep down, Cummings believes, the Bucs know they are in a pinch at guard, so he told Jason Jennings of WFLA-TV Channel 8 last night on “Sunday Sports Extra.”
“It is a big area of concern,” Cummings said. “Look, Jason Licht said the other day he feels pretty good about three-fifths of this offensive line. He likes the left tackle Anthony Collins and he likes the center Evan Dietrich-Smith and the right tackle in Demar Dotson. The guard spots? Listen, those positions are up for grabs. I am not convinced that the players on this team, that any one of them will be starting.
“They are looking around for other players. They feel good about a couple of veterans they have in Oniel Cousins and Jamon Meredith that they can do the job there, but they have not done it before on a consistent basis. At least, not at a high level.”
Bucs offensive line coach George Warhop Sunday took the company line that all is well when he said, “I like the guys we have competing. We’re rolling them through until it gets solidified, but I think we’ve got some pretty good prospects. I’m excited about them.”
It’s fine to be excited about them in July. But when Josh McCown is laying on his back in September, or when Doug Martin is running into brike walls in October, just how excited will Warhop be?