Changing Of The Guard(s And Tackle)March 29th, 2014
The Bucs’ offensive line is sure going to be different, and that doesn’t even factor in what may happen with left guard Carl Nicks.
Both Bucs general manager Jason Licht and coach Lovie Smith all but promised changes to the offensive line prior to the free agency dinner bell rang. And changes, they sure made.
Depending on Nicks, the Bucs could have four new starters up front as the Custodian of Canton, eye-RAH! Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune points out.
@IKaufmanTBO: If Carl Nicks doesn’t return, the Bucs will have replaced 4 of their 5 OL starters. If you saw the group play last season, you’d understand
What interests Joe about the new offensive line is how they are strong pass blockers, as the stat nerds at ProFootballFocus.com point out.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: One area the Buccaneers improved is pass protection. Anthony Collins led all offensive tackles in Pass Blocking Efficiency at 97.2 while Evan Dietrich-Smith has a PBE of 98.1 which was tied for eighth best among centers. As a team the Buccaneers offensive line was eighth worst with a PBE of 75.4.
So Lovie says he wants to run the ball, but the guys he is bringing in on the offensive line are better pass blockers than run blockers. What gives? Is this a clue to the Jeff Tedford offense, that it will be more pass-happy?
Or could it be the Bucs think they can coach guys up to run block; that pass blocking is more formidable and if an offensive lineman already has that down, then he can be taught to run block?