“I Would Like To Be That Guy Someday”

October 12th, 2017

“Monster.” (Photo courtesy of Buccaneers.com.)

Truth hurts the GMC haters.

Joe has been lucky enough through the past few years to talk to former NFL offensive coordinators, some from the NFC South, who discussed what stud defensive tackle Gerald McCoy means to the Bucs.

(A couple are currently head coaches, including winning Bucs coach Dirk Koetter).

There is a common denominator with these coordinators; they all gameplanned for GMC. Their thought processes were similar: Figure out a way to contain GMC, then your offense has a chance to dictate the game.

Joe recounted this story yesterday to Bucs rookie linebacker Kendell Beckwith. The LSU product’s eyes grew big when listening and he said, “I would like to be that guy someday.”

He’s got a helluva head start.

The third round draft pick is blowing up and Joe’s isn’t blowing smoke. His 12 tackles and two assists (14 combined) last week against the Belicheats is mind-blowing to Joe. Remember, Beckwith did this against one of the savviest quarterbacks the NFL has ever seen, and against arguably the smartest coach the NFL has had walk its sidelines. It’s not like Beckwith tore apart the Browns.

Just a quick flip to Pro-Football-Reference.com and Joe noticed starting middle linebacker Kwon Alexander, as good as he was in his rookie year, never had double-digit tackles (not counting assists) until his second year in the league. Beckwith got double-digits in his fourth game against the defending Super Bowl champions.

And to think Beckwith blew out a knee last November and not only was healthy for training camp, which is sort of a minor sports-medicine miracle, but he was only expected to be a part-time starter at strongside linebacker. But projected strongside LB starter Devante Bond got hurt.

Then, Alexander injured a hamstring. So Beckwith was basically shoved in to start at middle linebacker, ready or not. And he has been a freaking monster.

Next man up, indeed.

Joe bounced around the Bucs locker room yesterday asking some of Beckwith’s teammates what makes him so good.

“He’s big, fast, strong, smart,” safety Justin Evans said of Beckwith. “He’s everything you need in an NFL linebacker. He has all those intangibles. The minute he got here, he caught on right away.”

Joe heard similar comments about Beckwith: He’s intelligent, he’s fast and he is strong. It sounds, the way his teammates talk of him (and his production), Beckwith is the package.

Bucs fans know how Alexander has developed a tight relationship with defensive coordinator Mike Smith. The two meet each workday at One Buc Palace, well before most players, for their own little private coffee klatch. They study film or practice goals for the day, or watch tape of an opponent or old Bucs games to learn something new.

Beckwith, being a keen observer, told Joe this summer he noticed Alexander and Smith’s father/son-like relationship and figured since it worked for Alexander, then he should start showing up early, too.

Now, Beckwith is regularly in the same early-morning meetings with Alexander and Smith. It is that attention to detail that fans see on the field, Evans explained.

“You can see [from his play] the work that he puts in,” Evans said.

“Mr. Beasting,” Robert Ayers, is a huge fan of Beckwith. Once after a training camp practice, the Bucs defensive end walked up to Joe, pointed to Beckwith, and said, “You need to talk to him. He’s a monster.” So when Joe talked with Ayers yesterday about Beckwith, Ayers admitted what he says about Beckwith might sound like fluff because of his over-the-top enthusiasm for the rookie. But Ayers stated his words are true, not hype.

“That’s a [email protected]#$ing dog, that’s what he is,” Ayers said. “Man, he is just impressive. He is very aware. [Linebacker] is natural to him. His game is not forced. He has a natural feel to beat blocks and to be physical and to be aggressive.

“Dude is going to be a monster. We’ve been seeing it since he first got here. He has just been building and building and building and slowly taking control of the defense.”

That’s the thing that is really intriguing about Beckwith. It’s one thing to rack up 14 tackles, but to do so while calling defensive plays against Brady and Belicheat, that’s rare for a veteran much less a rookie in his fourth game.

“He takes coaching well and he is a player that is very smart,” Bucs corner Robert McClain said. “With his physical attritutes, he should be a great linebacker in this league. He is a player that understands this game. Rookies sometimes, take a while. I don’t see rookies like [Beckwith often].”

So from the other side of the line of scrimmage, what does receiver Mike Evans see in Beckwith? Blame it on his college, Evans said.

“It’s those guys from LSU, they’ve got some players,” Evans said. Beckwith “is just a natural. He just plays fast. He’s big; he’s physical and he can run.”

Likely sooner than later, opposing offenses will take notice. There is plenty of game film on Beckwith and he shouldn’t be much of a secret. If teams start to try to take him out of the game, will or can Beckwith adjust?

Beckwith said he wants to be that guy, a guy offenses target. He may just be that object of focus quicker than he realizes.

37 Responses to ““I Would Like To Be That Guy Someday””

  1. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Anyone think with a tighter salary cap coming up with Evans/Winston/Marpet/Smith/Kwon second contract that they will let #54 sign somewhere else and have Kwon move to WILL, Beckwith to SAM, and Glanton/Bond MIKE?

  2. MadMax Says:

    Try him at DE!!

    Why not?

  3. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Got that backwards ^^^ Beckwith Mike and Glanton/Bond SAM.

  4. Bucsfanman Says:

    I loved this pick from the start but never in a million years would I have thought that he would progress THIS rapidly.
    THIS is the guy who should be labeled “BEASTLY”!

  5. SB Says:

    If Kwon and David are healthy there is not better LB trio in the league IMO

  6. Dewey Selmon Says:

    DE might be a good option MadMax, He is stronger than Spence. Could be faster also.

  7. Oj "I Got The Juice" Howard Says:

    I was thinking DE too.

  8. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    @Bucsfanman

    I honestly thought the kid would redshirt his 1st year – because of the injury.
    But Wow – was I wrong. This kid plays lights out.

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    @LUV- No doubt! What a steal. Not too many naysayers now, are there?!

  10. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Kendell Beckwith aka “BULLY” Beckwith
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxoW_zBZrKw

  11. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    @Bucsfanman

    Might have to change my thinking on drafting – injured players.

    Good Lawd

  12. Lamarcus Says:

    ” He is our most instinctive player on the roster”

    I will never forget.

    How this coorelate to GMC? Other than beckwith makes the players better around him unlike gmc? No shot just stating the obvious

  13. Bucsfanman Says:

    Great analogy LUV! There’s an uncanny resemblance with that Pit!

  14. MadMax Says:

    And I still think we should pursue Ezekiel Ansah! But in the mean time, look at this Beast Beckwith.

    Sup Luv, been a while.

  15. darin Says:

    I didnt like the move to trade up for him during the draft, as Ive stated. I thought coming off that injury he would still be there in the 4th, and we keep trading picks we need for other spots. After seeing his play tho I dont have a problem with it now. Id be nervous he might be gone too, had I known he was this good. He kept us in the patsies game. Im a big fan. Lets hope the others get healthy for this week so we can see some great lb play across the field. Great job Kendell. Go Bucs

  16. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    MadMax – Sup brotha

    Ezekiel Ansah – Hell F##K Yeah

    Seems like just yesterday – we were talking about drafting this kid.
    When many at the time – had the kid listed as a late – to early 2nd round pick.
    Then after the combine – he shot up the draft board.

    He’s everything we thought he was.

  17. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Bucsfanman

    No doubt! Blue Ribbon all the way

  18. Canadabucsfan Says:

    The guy never stops smiling. Love for the game mixed with that talent…. no telling how far this man will take us. I am pumped about him. I hope we can do more down with him in it when everybody is healthy.

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    This is shaping up to be one of Licht’s best drafts…….Howard, Evans, Beckwith & Godwin…..not bad, not bad at all.

  20. Defense Rules Says:

    Bucs have a goldmine at LB in David, Kwon, Beckwith, Glanton & Bond. All of them can make big-time plays. We’ve still got 2 years minimum before we have to worry about contracts, etc. Smitty is still trying to figure out IMO how to use his LB corps, the most talented group on the Bucs. Too often folks think in terms of either having 2 or 3 LBs on the field depending upon the game situation (passing or running downs?). I personally wouldn’t be surprised to see 3 LBs on the field in the majority of downs, and possibly even 4 LBs in certain selective situations. Bucs desperately need to pressure opposing QBs and improve underneath coverage. We don’t appear to have the DEs who can accomplish that right now, nor do we have the secondary that can take away underneath throws. Guess is that Smitty will figure out how to use our strength … our LBs … more effectively to accomplish that.

  21. MadMax Says:

    Yes Sir Luv!!! Great minds my friend…just like when I wanted Grimes and we finally got him (thanks to Smith)

    We should work for the Bucs as intel and get paid for it….but we’ll settle as keyboard consultants in the meantime hahaha

  22. LakeLand Says:

    Kendell Beckwith is a true MIKE, that’s his position. At LSU, Kwon Alexander, Deion Jones, Duke Riley played outside. The Bucs and the Falcons converted Kwon and Deion to Mike. But the MIKE is Beckwith natural position.

  23. 813bucboi Says:

    beckwith is a beast!!!!…GO BUCS!!!

  24. Nick2 Says:

    I am looking forward to what should be a completely different Arizona game from last year. Beckwith should be the difference maker on defense and hopefully Doug and Desean will be that for our offense. They will key on Evans with Patrick Peterson but we owe the damn Cards and they will get theirs. Someone said on here yesterday that Arians was saying they should have crushed us even worse. Damn those are some fighting words if Jameis can bounce back from last weeks (only good in the 4th) performance we might be in for a pivotal game in our season. IF we lose to the freaking Cards I just see bad things happening afterwards.

  25. Buc believer Says:

    Figures that there must be a GMC reference in an otherwise stellar piece about a truly hard working Buc instead of a showboat look at what a great religious guy I am player who goes on the bench in the fourth quarter when we need him the most player.

  26. James Walker Says:

    Hitting on two LB so close together has me thinking that either scouting, or coaching may also be a important factor.

  27. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    MadMax

    Lol – Its helleva lot better than being a keyboard warrior

  28. SOEbuc Says:

    Lakeland

    Good point. So what’s gonna happen if Kwon and LVD can come back full speed? Beckwith is a true MIKE LB. Smitty is not gonna just automatically turn this into a mostly 3-4 defense and we have to have all three of these guys starting somewhere on Sundays. SO I ASK ALL THE JBF POSTERS TO TELL WHO GOES WHERE WITH THE HEALTHY RETURN OF KWON AND LVD??? My bet is on Beckwith going back to SAM for now, but things could change further down the road.

  29. NCFlorIdiot Says:

    Wooohooo…. 1996 all over again… Good read Joe!

  30. Brandon Says:

    If he keeps pushing like this, he’s going to push Kwon into Lavonte’s spot, and Lavonte off the roster. Three great LBs is actually one great LB too many in today’s game. Lavonte is making all the $$$ and hasn’t lived up to his promise from his early years. If Beckwith keeps this up, Lavonte will be gone.

    Funny thing is, everybody is describing Beckwith as “fast”… something few said about him in college. He was more of a 2 down thumper, not great in coverage. Then he blew out his knee. I don’t know what happened, but he is currently reminding me a little bit of Brian Urlacher when he was a rookie. Big, fast, smart, and productive.

  31. Capt. Blighe Says:

    Hey may be the best LB on the team. When all are healthy it will be very interesting how they lineup. I think it will be LVD54 that loses snaps.

  32. Joe Says:

    My bet is on Beckwith going back to SAM for now.

    Correct.

    Bucs are not going to a 34 base anytime soon. Have a hunch might see more 34 though. Maybe David, Kwon, Beckwith and Spence at LB and blitz David more on passing downs?

    Delicious possibilities.

  33. SOEbuc Says:

    The trade of LVD after this year would save the Bucs a butt load of money and if not a quality player(s) than some very high draft picks or possibly both.

  34. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Its amazing the exact same detailed posts that is written in this thread, Kobe has posted 5 weeks ago”

    “My Morgan & Morgan Attorney will be sending out cease and desist letters to every poster on this thread! You are forewarned!”

    Kobe Faker

    #FREEOJSTOCKER

  35. SOEbuc Says:

    “The trade of LVD after this year would save the Bucs a butt load of money and if not a quality player(s) than some very high draft picks or possibly both.”

    Move Beckwith back to MIKE and Kwon to WILL where he could ball out.

    “Build through the draft.” Hot damn Jason! You got it down making me want to trade mid aged vets that I love and are still pro bowl materiel.

  36. orlbucfan Says:

    LVD isn’t going anywhere. I’m about to brain a few on here for even thinking it! Now, are LVD and the Kwonster playing next Sunday? Didn’t Dungy’s defense have plays for 3 LBs? We all remember what a monster defense THAT was! The coaches need to catch up with the talent that’s assembling on this team. That’s the biggest problem. Go Bucs!!

  37. RickinFtMyers Says:

    Let’s keep in mind Mike Smith has on more than one occasion said he want to put the best 11 defenders on the field. So, my thinking is once Kwon Alexander and Lavonte David are healthy we’re going to see more 3-4 schemes from the Bucs’ defense. I think we’ll see Alexander and Kendell Beckwith at ILB with Alexander at the Will, which is typically the faster and more athletic of the two ILBs and Beckwith at the Mike, which is usually the bigger and stronger of the two ILBs. We’ll see David and either Davonte Bond or Adarius Glanton at OLB, with Bond or Glanton playing the Sam backer position, a traditional Sam type player and David playing the Joker or the fourth pass rusher position.