April Smokescreens

April 10th, 2014
smokescreen

How a smokescreen helped build a Bucs champion.

Yes, Joe is as guilty as the next person. So-and-so is visiting the Bucs. NFL news!

Hey, Joe is hungry for the beast. And that beast is the draft. The beast got bigger this year because the NFL moved the draft two weeks later to avoid a scheduling conflict collect big paychecks during May TV sweeps month.

So with NFL fans aching for every morsel of information in April, visits and pro days become news, TV events, chatter. But how much is real and how much is smokescreen? It’s possible these events are really nothing more than smokescreens.

Consider this little tidbit from Joe’s friend Jason McIntyre, founder and CEO of TheBigLead.com, which suggests visits by prospects to team facilities are a waste of time to discuss.

According to the site Draft Ace, the Patriots had 43 players in for a visit in 2013 leading up to the draft (teams are only permitted 30, so this list likely includes regional players, who don’t count against the 30). Guess how many of those 43 the Patriots selected in the 2013 draft?

None.

New England had seven running backs visit and didn’t take a ball carrier. They had 10 wide receivers come in for a visit and selected two pass-catchers (Aaron Dobson and Josh Boyce). There could be a dozen reasons this happened. Didn’t like anyone they saw up close? Plausible. Smokescreen? Perhaps. Already loved a guy they didn’t have visit, but wanted to take a gander at a few others at the position? Sure. Maybe some of the players flubbed their interview for whatever reason, and got crossed off the board? Maybe.

The same could be said for former Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik. Last year the Bucs brought in the following players, per DraftAce.com:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
RB – Christine Michael, Texas A&M
RB – Le’Veon Bell, Michigan State
OT – D.J. Fluker, Alabama
DE – Corey Lemonier, Auburn
DE – Ezekiel Ansah, BYU
DE – Cornelius Washington, Georgia
DE – William Gholston, Michigan State
LB – Dion Jordan, Oregon
LB – Sio Moore, Connecticut
CB – Tyrann Mathieu, LSU
CB – Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Connecticut
CB – Dee Milliner, Alabama
S — Ohrian Johnson, Ohio State

Naturally, the only guy in that list the Bucs picked up was Will Gholston.

Then there is the matter of pro days. Remember Mike Mamula, the combine workout warrior who had the Eagles in full erection mode so bad, they basically gave the Bucs the franchise’s lone Super Bowl win? Pat Yasinskas detailed it in a story for ESPN back in 2008.

After all, [the Bucs] sent a huge contingent of front-office types and coaches to Boston College for a post-combine workout, where Mamula solidly backed up his showing in Indianapolis. But Rich McKay, Tampa Bay’s general manager at the time, now admits that was all a smokescreen.

“Mike had a great workout,” said McKay, now team president of the Atlanta Falcons. “But we decided early on that he was an undersized, pass-rushing end and it wasn’t in our best interest to draft him that high.

“We were in a situation where we needed players, not just one player. We thought Mamula was a guy that might have greater value to other teams, so we didn’t dispute the speculation that we were interested and we did everything in our power to push him up the board.”

The Bucs had the seventh pick in the draft and swapped it for the Eagles’ first round pick along with two second round picks. With the pick from the Eagles, the Bucs drafted Warren Sapp. The Bucs then used the two second round picks to move up to select Derrick Brooks.

So remember, even it is draft news, be careful for the smell of smoke. The draft is a too long four weeks away.

34 Responses to “April Smokescreens”

  1. Macabee Says:

    Players that have/had private visits/workouts with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

    Alex Bayer, TE, Bowling Green
    C.J. Fiedorowicz, TE, Iowa
    Dee Ford, DE, Auburn
    Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn
    Billy Turner, OT, North Dakota State
    Larry Webster, OLB/DE, Bloomsburg
    Martavis Bryant, WR, Clemson
    Garrett Gilbert, QB, SMU
    Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville
    James Wilder, Jr., RB/FB, FSU
    Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois
    Garrett Scott, OT, Marshall
    Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M
    Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama

    Players that have been interviewed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

    Justin Anderson, DE, UMass (PRO)
    Lamin Barrow, ILB, LSU (COM) (SR)
    Blake Bortles, QB, Central Florida (COM)
    Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh (COM)

  2. You go Joe Says:

    Dam joe I saw honey badger made a visit last year… If only rock star drafted him instead of Banks or Glennon. The kid was a HUGE steal for Arizona, a first round grade CB with iffy issues since he puffed on the magic dragon.

    I hoped licht has magical draft powers for this years draft. I love the 2012 draft as we got Barron, Doug Martin , and David. Hopefully we can do the same!

  3. WalkdaPlank Says:

    Interesting only one WR on either of those lists Macabee.

  4. Buc1987 Says:

    I’m stuck on Evans at 7, Oline, or trade down.

  5. Macabee Says:

    WalkdaPlank,

    I noticed that too! May know who they want and do not want to attract too much attention to the target. Already the Lions are posturing as though they want to trade up and get Watkins. Better to have an interested team think that the player may fall to them. And of course i’m guessing here. Great draft, but lots of drama unfolding.

  6. Buc1987 Says:

    Anyone remember these 2 on draft day? Ahhhhhhhhhh what a great pic!

    http://taylorblitztimes.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/sappbrooks.jpg

  7. Espo Says:

    Great story Joe. I had no idea how that came about. Thanks.

  8. BFFL Says:

    Teams are also doing everything they can to cause Manziel to drop. Don’t be surprised if the Rams are behind all this Johnny is a risk nonsense just so they can prevent teams from trading with Houston.

  9. Seth B Says:

    Joe,

    Do you think the Bucs will take into account the current sexual assault allegations against Colin Kapernick when considering drafting Johnny Football?

    I ask because the 2 guys seem to be cut from the same cloth of the younger hip hop generation and love the limelight and parties.

    Whether Colin Kapernick is even charged isn’t my point…

    Players who live in the limelight tend to be at the forefront of negative attention. Especially the players who are big on the party scene.

    I think you’ve said it more than anyonew that the Glazers hate to be embarrassed. By drafting a player like Manziel, wouldn’t the be going against the way they normally operate considering how Mike Williams was ousted…

    I like Johnny as a player and I’m a party guy… Just wondering how it relates to the Glaziers mindset.

  10. feelthepewterpower Says:

    Pearl Harbor as a smokescreen? lol

  11. zam Says:

    that’s pretty great analysis… You are a stats nerd Joe… embrace it.

  12. Ernest T. Bass Says:

    Loveboat is all about the Smokescreen!! Everyone they said was part of the team is gone. Who Loveboat really wants they met with at the senior bowl or combine in private.

  13. MR.T Says:

    Yep, won’t know till may what our plans really are. This will be a fun draft to watch.

  14. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Buc1987 I’m with you. Mike Evans at #7. He’s like a Vjax with more dependable hands. We still need to find some speed. I still miss a receiver that can get separation.

    Then again maybe Tedford can create some separation with his schemes if WR’s are not fast or shifty enough to do it themselves.

  15. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    We are NOT drafting a WR at 7. At all. Not going to happen.

    You may wish it will, but it won’t.

    Personally, I still think they will target oline or Carr.

  16. Jerry Says:

    Joe, there’s a report that Johnny was seen with Rachel this afternoon at Hooters.

  17. StAugBuc Says:

    At times, this site is as sleepy as our ex QB

  18. louden Says:

    Tyrann Matthieu would have been great pick last year – i agree!! i pleaded all the way leading to the draft, that bucs should pick him up with the 2nd rounder because he will likely be gone with the 3rd and he would have the talent to be a 2nd rounder..

    One year later – i am all in for DeAnthony Thomas in the 2nd!!! true play-/difference maker on a position of need with tons of talent – enough said!!

  19. Colb Says:

    I think the more relevant track record to post rather than the Dominick smoke is Licht’s. Who did the Cardinals bring in last year? How have his past team’s drafted. I’d like an article about this.

  20. Newschoolbucsfan Says:

    Colin Kapernick is going to make life hard for johnny football.I think the NFL is cracking down on behavior that sheds a bad light on the shield.Charecter is a huge deal,and I know people have aid that they dont want sunday school boys….But we had on in d.Brooks,how did that work out?
    I feel like there are alot of smokescreens,and right now all of those players are being vetted.Hopefully we get someone who will make not only the team proud during the game,but the community proud off of it.Someone we dont have to make excuses for,or coddle them and say ts ok if they had a mattress out front,they caught touchdowns! Its time for some proud players who dont scare the interviewer after the nfc title game.We need players who know playing for any team,even the awful browns is a honor,not a right.too many entitled and have a “posse”around them to pump them up without putting the work in.These self serving players make the ones who do the right thing be overshadowed.I feel liek thats what they are doing, I think IF this is the trend thats going,you will see alot more cuts and trades after the draft.Smokescreen or no,Alot of adult clubs will have much less revenue than before.lol

  21. finishers Says:

    @ Bonzai so glad you’re the head coach and Gm! we can just ask you every move the teams going to make from now on! lol

  22. Joe Says:

    Do you think the Bucs will take into account the current sexual assault allegations against Colin Kapernick when considering drafting Johnny Football?

    That’s a helluva leap to take shaky allegations on a guy and somehow claim that will also happen to a potential draftee. What next, a priest is accused of groping a girl and that means Johnny Football will bang some college chick if he is drafted by the Bucs?

  23. Joe Says:

    Joe, there’s a report that Johnny was seen with Rachel this afternoon at Hooters.

    Lucky SOB!

  24. andres Says:

    U.S. Personnel Casualties Pearl Harbor

    Service Killed Wounded Total

    Navy 2008 710 2718

    Army 218 364 582

    Marines 109 69 178

    Civilians 68 35 103

  25. Buc1987 Says:

    andres…. liberals don’t care about that stuff.

  26. sethb22 Says:

    @ Joe,

    Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning… Would never be in a situation where sexual assault allegations can happen… They home with the wife…

    Colin Kapernick and Johnny Football are alike in the fact that they hangout with celebrities and out putting themselves in bad situations.

    Outside of Joe Namath, name another successful Party QB…I’ll wait!

    You want your QB to be a nerd! Johnny might be a dude I’d chill with because I like to party but I wouldn’t invest a #7 pick in anybody in my crew…

    My guess is after the Mike Williams events, you have to think the Glaziers won’t deal with embarrassment… Johnny Football is way to risky for them. Your Blinded by your Man crush Joe!

  27. Joe Says:

    seth22:

    Colin Kapernick and Johnny Football are alike in the fact that they hangout with celebrities and out putting themselves in bad situations.

    So, if you have celebrity friends, that means you will sexually assault women? First off, the allegation on Kaepernick is shaky at best (guessing you haven’t read up with that because it may prevent you from jumping to wild conclusions). Second, because a quarterback finds himself in a pickle, maybe, that means another guy will, too, you know, just because???

    Funny, Son of Saban hangs with celebrities, too. Is engaged to one. Funny you aren’t predicting him to get busted for assaulting women.

    Please document what Manziel has ever done that would lead anyone to believe he’s going to molest women? That’s just outrageous!

    Outside of Joe Namath, name another successful Party QB…I’ll wait!

    LOL Good, God. Just off the top of Joe’s head, Bobby Layne, Don Meredith, Kenny Stabler, Brett Favre, Sonny Jurgensen (who was Vince Lombardi’s starting quarterback), Jim McMahon and that’s just off the top of Joe’s head.

    Hell, Matt Stafford is a drunk. Often can be seen at Fergs since his brother lives down here. Know a cute barmaid (looks like Kaley Cuoco) he worked on for hours (with no success) while smashed. Tell me Stafford wouldn’t be an upgrade over what the Bucs currently have at quarterback?

    Dude, it’s OK if you don’t like Johnny Football. That’s fine. But don’t dream up sh!t and reach for wild accusations to somehow reinforce your views. Man!

  28. Joe Says:

    Tom Brady, Peyton Manning… Would never be in a situation where sexual assault allegations can happen… They home with the wife…

    Dare say if Cam Newton did what Tom Brady did, he’d be crucified: bailing on his babymama (an actress, you know, a celebrity) to run off with a model (another celebrity).

    So given one reader’s twisted logic, since Brady hangs with celebrities, we can expect him to be busted for molesting women. smh

    This is beyond the pale! A weakass allegation against Colin Kaepernick means Johnny Football will molest women. You guys are certifiable. Since we are adding two and two and coming up with 11, give Joe those Lotto numbers for this weekend, huh?

  29. Joe Says:

    Yup. Those Mannings, they lead a quiet, simple, clean life.

    Eli Manning drunk on his arse. Same guy who has two Super Bowl rings.

  30. Buc1987 Says:

    @Joe LMAO

  31. lurker Says:

    and buc87 shows his retardedness again.

  32. sethb22 Says:

    @ Joe,

    I’m a Johnny Football fan. Actually, I love Manzeil. You just routinely promote the hell out of dude. Where is the opposite argument… The “Fire Schiano” or “Keep Schiano” piece for Manziel?

    Its damn near propaganda…

    Just be real, were drafting an offensive linemen… guaranteed! I say its 70/30 we do it in the 2nd too.

    I made no accusations, I just said the Glaziers don’t want to be embarrassed and Johnny Manziel has the highest probability to embarrass them because he is always in the limelight.

    I don’t care about alcohol… He just has the potential to be out every night. Spend 10 nights out at least one of the nights something is going to pop off… Not sexual assault… not a fight, just something that embarrasses the org. Whether he is at fault or not.

    Same thing with Colin Kapernick… Dude loves the scene… That is what I was saying… His potential to be out everynight could be discouraging to the Glazier Family who doesn’t want to be embarrassed…

  33. Joe Says:

    Just be real, were drafting an offensive linemen… guaranteed! I say its 70/30 we do it in the 2nd too.

    Joe has no problem with that.

  34. BoJim Says:

    andres Said:

    “U.S. Personnel Casualties Pearl Harbor

    Service Killed Wounded Total

    Navy 2008 710 2718

    Army 218 364 582

    Marines 109 69 178

    Civilians 68 35 103″

    Flag waving?

 
 

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