Lovie Endorses Luke Stocker

August 19th, 2014
Bucs TE and fan favorite Luke Stocker received high praise from Lovie Smith yesterday.

Bucs TE and fan favorite Luke Stocker received high praise from Lovie Smith yesterday.

A sect of Bucs fans cannot wait to run certain players from the team. Yes, Joe joined these folks when it came to the likes of Sabby the Goat and Myron Lewis, to name a couple. It seems this season, these fans have aimed their ire at tight end Luke Stocker.

In his fourth season, Stocker’s days have been injury-riddled and forgettable, largely because it is hard to remember him being on the field. When he played, he didn’t always have reliable hands.

With Tim Wright already on board and the Bucs going out and getting Brandon Myers in free agency, and then surprising the NFL world by selecting Austin Seferian-Jenkins, it seemed like Stocker was on the endangered species list.

Even Stocker admitted he knew he was on the bubble as he openly hoped for Lovie to keep four tight ends.

“That’s definetly my mindset and that’s my job is to make them keep me,” Stocker said. “That’s my goal right now.”

It seems he may have done that. Lovie shocked all onlookers Saturday night when it was Stocker who started with the first team offense against Miami. Yesterday, Lovie fueled the fire that Stocker may keep his gig in Tampa Bay.

“He has performed well,” Lovie said of Stocker. “As I came in, outside information and inside information, he looked the part. That’s how you draw up a tight end. But he has been hurt throughout. He really had a plan to show up and stay — no one plans to get hurt. He has shown up and has had a good camp, simple as that. As for numbers on a tight end, you can count four, easily. I think we have four on our roster now that will play in the league somewhere. Hopefully here.

“Luke has played well. And he is a good football player.”

Now Lovie isn’t the type of guy to engage in mindgames. Joe has never sensed that and never got that feedback from any player. Lovie has already called out Wright, who until that episode seemed like a virtual lock for the 53-man roster.

Joe could easily understand if Lovie’s praise of Stocker is a way to get Wright out of his doghouse. But that doesn’t seem to be Lovie’s style. Notice, Lovie stopped just short of saying Stocker will make his 53-man roster?

Coaches like guys all the time who don’t make a final-53. Guys who have good training camps don’t always make the team. Only the next 11 days will tell if Stocker played his way onto the roster.

17 Responses to “Lovie Endorses Luke Stocker”

  1. clafollett Says:

    I have a hard time seeming him stay. I still haven’t heard much news about him these past OTAs and camps. Maybe he has finally done something to impress. If so, it must be behind closed doors.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I think we will use a lot of TE multiple sets……It is very possible that we will keep 4.
    None of the 4 can be put on the practice squad so we could keep 4 and activate 3.
    It may very well depend on how many we keep at other positions like RB, WR & CB.

  3. gbuc Says:

    Yeah right…Lovie Smith On Revis: “We Have A Place For A Great Cover Corner”

  4. robert9 Says:

    so, we piss off arguably the standout player on Wright last year and promote a guy who will be hurt before game two.

    not sure I see the logic here.

    WTF happened to two TE passing threats and jump ball WR’s???? guess that goes out the window when your line can’t block a fart.

  5. BirdDoggers Says:

    I would be surprised to see Stocker make the team over a more proven player but you never know. A lack of TE depth and potential have kept Stocker around this long. Now that the team has depth he would seem to be the odd man out.

  6. meh Says:

    Stocker is barely passable when he’s healthy, which is almost never.

  7. Louis Friend Says:

    Myers should be the one who is worried

  8. d-money Says:

    I think Joe needs to look up the definition of “endorse”.

  9. BucsfaninChina Says:

    Please no.

  10. knucknbuc Says:

    Yea ok isn’t this the same coach that made it seem like Mike will and revis would be on this team. I’m not expecting lovie to say he’s slow as molasses and injury prone. Which he is. If lovie said stocker runs a 4.5 40 now and has a 37 inch vertical the media in Tampa would probably fall for it. This is lovie trying to get Tim Wright to play up to his potential. Stocker sucks I know it fans know it and I’m sure lovie knows it.

  11. BUCTROOPER Says:

    Dominik traded UP for for him.

  12. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    “Joe could easily understand if Lovie’s praise of Stocker is a way to get Wright out of his doghouse. But that doesn’t seem to be Lovie’s style. “

    I honestly don’t remember, but didn’t Wright struggle in Training Camp last year? I thought he came in as a WR but got moved to TE?

    Maybe he just doesn’t do well in practice. Some guys are like that. Sometimes the light goes on in game situations.

    Either way though, I really got the impression Lovie is saying good things about Stocker so that the guy can get signed elsewhere when he is cut.

    My personal thoughts on Stocker are that I like him but he has had enough time to call him a bust. I think if he not been injured so much he would have turned into a good TE, but injuries have continued to be the main issue. I’ve supported him in previous years, but there has to come a time when he either earns it or is cut, and I have not seen him earning it this year.

    Props where props are earned. Roster spot where spots are earned, with few exceptions (and all of them rookies).

  13. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    As to the new depth chart, I really get the impression that Lovie is more concerned with evaluation in this next game than getting his starting unit as a whole the playing time.

    At least in some spots. I’m sure the oline is going to be getting as much experience as possible the next two games. It needs it.

    The current depth chart on the Bucs site lists Charles Sims as the #3 RB. Is the new depth chart listed elsewhere?

  14. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    If it’s between Myers and Stocker I’m taking Stocker.

  15. unbelievable Says:

    What makes you think Stocker would finally stay healthy this year? Wright and ASJ are far better receivers and much more dynamic. And Meyers is a better blocker.

    Stocker only stays if they keep 4, no way is he on the roster of Wright. Not happening.

  16. unbelievable Says:

    *over Wright

  17. DB55 Says:

    Lovie must want a fan mutiny if he cuts Wright over Stocker! Wright may not be a great blocker but he can make plays scores touchdowns.