Bucs’ Unknown Minicamp Is Playing A Role

April 25th, 2014
Read this and you'll understand why Josh McCown is the unquestioned leader of the Bucs offense

Read this and you’ll understand why Josh McCown is the unquestioned leader of the Bucs offense

There’s a reason the Bucs didn’t look like a brand new offense with a free agent quarterback during their first practices under the Lovie Smith regime this week.

That’s because the entire offense — yes, everybody — was together multiple times on local ball fields between the time Lovie and Jeff Tedford passed out playbooks on April 7 and the opening minicamp on Tuesday, which was the first time coaches could work with players outside of meeting rooms.

Practices are allowed by the NFL if players gather on their own time — at their own location. The unquestioned leader of the Bucs offense, Josh McCown, is single-handedly driving the team to beat the learning curve of their offense, much like the Bears offense did with first-year coach/offensive guru Marc Trestman last year.

Frankly, Joe was stunned to learn about this. Sure, it’s common for a handful of receivers to get together with quarterbacks to work on running routes and passing. But it’s a whole different animal to have offensive linemen and 30+ guys in all going through walk-throughs and jog-throughs and learning a playbook together.

“Everybody is so hungry to learn,” Luke Stocker said. “No one knew we were out there. There were about four [non-Buccaneers] out there on the field jogging and you could see they were a little confused. But when they saw all the Buccaneers shirts, they figured it out pretty quick, I think.”

“All three of our quarterbacks did a great job leading the group and they came in with a good understanding of the offense. Learning the cadence, learning the huddle system, learning no-huddle stuff.”

(JoeBucsFan.com is not revealing the park location)

From Stocker to newcomers Brandon Myers and Louis Murphy, no veteran Buccaneers had ever seen an assembly like that before, so they told Joe.

Murphy said he was blown away and the workouts were more serious than the less formal sessions he experienced during the NFL Lockout of 2011.

“That says something about our group. Everybody on the offense showed up. It was great for building chemistry and just to get going and learning. It was very serious. Very professional,” Murphy said. “With the CBA rules we can’t do it here, so our leader Josh [McCown] callin’ up, we had great sessions. Great for team chemistry.

“There were very little mistakes in [minicamp this week] and that had a lot to do with it.”

It’s a Bears thing

Myers described the informal practices as very technical and about education of the offense.

McCown told Joe he was duplicating sessions he and Jay Cutler were a part of with the Bears after they got a new playbook from Trestman.

“There’s only so many hours. So you gotta do something else. You’re a new offense. I mean you’re not on the field with the coaches and you’re going to go out and do a minicamp like we did this week? And compete against defense? McCown said.

“Jeff Tedford’s in the NFL for the first time, so a lot of the terminology and things are different. So we needed to go through that process. There was a lot of value in it. You saw that this week.”

Lovie weighs in

Joe talked to Bucs head coach Lovie Smith about these player-only sessions this morning at a Tampa charity event. Of course, Lovie noted that he and his staff had nothing to do with planning or executing the effort. But Lovie said it’s the kind of thing that is commonplace for Josh McCown.

“Josh will surprise you, and he’ll surprise fans and his teammates, but he won’t surprise me with the effort he’ll put forth to make this organization a winner, and to always help those around him,” Lovie said. “I’m sure he’s got all kinds of things planned. I trust him with our offense.”

It’s that same trust Lovie referenced repeatedly when McCown was signed, versus the unknown of Mike Glennon, Mike Kafka or any QB the Bucs may draft.

Joe noted a couple of times this week in his “practice notes” that McCown surprisingly looked like a deeply entrenched leader already. What Joe has learned of these hidden practice sessions, it’s now obvious why McCown looked the part at One Buc Palace.

And another thing McCown told Joe, expect these private, players-time practices to continue.

55 Responses to “Bucs’ Unknown Minicamp Is Playing A Role”

  1. BigMacAttack Says:

    Outstanding!!!

  2. BucsfaninChina Says:

    F**king fantastic.

  3. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Very impressive.

    Freeman led the ones during the lockout, and these are more serious? Kind of makes me wonder if Freeman was very good at it at the time. He had good intentions though.

    This caused McCown to score some points with me, I won’t lie.

  4. Sweets Willie Says:

    So excited for this offense!! Great news, nice to know they aren’t satisfied. Can’t wait for the draft to pick up more weapons!!

  5. Bucky1 Says:

    McCown is looking good so far and it appears that he is comfortable with Glennon and Glennon with him. If Lovey is all about trust, if he picks a new QB at 7 or latter, I bet McCown will still be the starter unless he Sh!ts his pants.

  6. Bucsfanman Says:

    Gotta love it. Leadership, teamwork, and chemistry, these are the building blocks for success. One thing’s for sure, Josh is makng his mark!

  7. Couch Fan Says:

    I’m liking McCown more and more. He’ll make a better mentor than Dan O did when Glennon takes the job from him.

  8. bucrightoff Says:

    This article is just another reinfocement that Josh McCown is the unquestioned starter, and there is a 0% chance a QB is being drafted at 7. Lovie isn’t creating a controversy, which drafting a QB at 7 is guaranteed to do.

  9. duthty rhothdes Says:

    Awesome glad their is some leadership back in Tampa

  10. biff barker Says:

    BucRight, agree about a QB going first round. Maybe it’s going to be Murray in the 4th if we shuffle for the pick.

  11. lightningbuc Says:

    (JoeBucsFan.com is not revealing the park location)

    _________

    For fear we might climb the monkey bars to get a better look?

  12. William Says:

    @Bucsfanman – Perfectly said!

    Right on Track!!!

    I was one hoping to see Vick here. I’m glad we did not get him. Josh will be the perfect mentor for the drafted QB.

    Go Bucs!

    Connor Shaw is coming to Tampa.

  13. Joe Says:

    For fear we might climb the monkey bars to get a better look?

    If Joe outed the location, of course fans would mob the place and Joe understands that. But the players want to do this in a place that is about as private as they can get. They would be pretty peeved if Joe outed that secret hangout.

  14. Joe Says:

    Connor Shaw is coming to Tampa.

    For a Rays game?

  15. Ryan Says:

    Stop it, Joe. It’s only April, I shouldn’t be this excited for football.

  16. Mumbles Says:

    Sounds great! Leadership is needed. Maybe, just maybe!!!

  17. Jason Says:

    I disagree, Bucrightoff. It’s not controversy when the starter is 35 yrs old. If he were 28…hell, even 30, then maybe. As it stands, the Bucs need a QB of the future and unless the leadership thinks Glennon is that guy (which im guessing they dont, due to bringing McCown in), theyll need to draft one sooner rather than later.

  18. Buc1987 Says:

    McCown, Glennon, Kafka. McCown was brought in because Lovie trusts him ( a familiar face) and he has never worked with Glennon before, tape or no tape. I think Lovie and Tedford do like Glennon, and that’s why I think they keep him. I’m sure his tape also showed what he was working with out there and the inefficiencies of Sully and Schiano too. Of course they’ve seen plenty of tape on Glennon and that’s why I think they will declare him the back up after training camp ends.

    There will be no QB drafted in 2014.

  19. Barry Says:

    Excited about a career backup leading your team? Hummmm, interesting.

  20. Patrick Says:

    Glennon will beat McCown in the pre-season.

  21. Buc1987 Says:

    Also to the people on here that say that there are many national analysts that believe Glennon showed promise. You’re right. Search the net people. Many outside of the Tampa area(media and fans) think Glennon is pretty decent.

    They never mention that he’s a nice guy though, like someone I know.

  22. panhandle buc Says:

    The bucs do need a QB for the future. I just watched Grudens camp on JFB (all 45 mins) and I got to say, he impressed me (Joe will be excited). Hand size, foot size, arm, smarts…… he is a better version of Russel Wilson. Aron Murray is my second QB pick! I think its safe to say josh will be the starter this season, so having JFB or murray on the sidelines for a year would be great!

  23. Buc1987 Says:

    This is a good draft to pick a QB. I think L&L will pass on all of them.

  24. bucrightoff Says:

    Jason Says:
    April 25th, 2014 at 11:43 am
    I disagree, Bucrightoff. It’s not controversy when the starter is 35 yrs old. If he were 28…hell, even 30, then maybe. As it stands, the Bucs need a QB of the future and unless the leadership thinks Glennon is that guy (which im guessing they dont, due to bringing McCown in), theyll need to draft one sooner rather than later.
    ___________________________________________________________

    Every QB drafted in the 1st round since 2009, except Josh Freeman and Tim Tebow, has started right away. The fans will demand it quite frankly, because the fans will automatically annoint a top-10 picked QB as the franchise, and that’s where the controversy starts. So while they may draft a QB, it will not be at #7. 0% chance at all.

  25. tiny tim Says:

    @ Buc Bonzai

    This has nothing to do with Freeman. Murphy was not even playing for the bucs when Freeman led the unofficial workouts. He was on another team. How you seem to draw a comparison to Freeman is beyond me.

  26. Navfree17 Says:

    @Barry-

    Just as excited the Rams were when they picked up a Arena Football player. Worked out pretty well for them!

  27. You Go Joe Says:

    Dam joe great story!! Reveals a lot of character and leadership in our offense. It gives fans a calm knowing we have a leader like McCown.

  28. Danati74 Says:

    I still wouldn’t be surprised if the Bucs don’t draft Derrick Carr. Not saying it will happen, but anything is possible. He probably knows Jeff’s system 1st hand. He ran a 4.69 40 at the combine, just behind Joe’s man crush and he is a family man. I think he has all the intangibles the new regime likes. I don’t think he will be their #7 pick, but I would be surprised if they moved back in the 1st or 2nd to get him. I could see more needs(OL n WR) also, but the new regime’s QB list is probably a short one.

  29. The 300's Says:

    This is the epitome of a professional Joe! You can’t party and bring the ladies home to the stripper pole every night to be the professional every day like it takes!

  30. Bucky1 Says:

    @Jason Sounds like you have never been in competition for an important position in your work field. Competition brings tension, discontent, disdain and pure contempt. Frankly, I for one, am pleasantly surprised with the maturity and comradery that has been exhibited between McCown and Gleenon. L&L would destroy all that has been accomplished in this short time if he brought in the wild west/new york wannabe called Johnny “F” Football. You will just have to live with what we have for this year.

  31. Gusjackson Says:

    This is huge, remember when the bucs needed time for the offense to gel because they didn’t understand it back in 2012. This is what you do to close the knowledge gap

  32. Bucky1 Says:

    @300 We saw how well that worked out for our #2 receiver didn’t we? L&L is not going to put up with any Crap! There will be no spinning disks on the side (K2).

  33. Gusjackson Says:

    Why does said quarterback NEED to start right away if picked in the first round. Let’s DEVELOP a quarterback. If we bring one in they will compete for the starting role and may the best man win. It could Mccown it could be a rookie hell it could be Glennon. Only time will tell

  34. Scoobs Says:

    A keen observer picked up that Tedford would change a play because of a mismatch and the offense would execute it. This is the same park Shaun King throws picnics for himself.

  35. bucrightoff Says:

    Gusjackson Says:
    April 25th, 2014 at 1:02 pm
    Why does said quarterback NEED to start right away if picked in the first round. Let’s DEVELOP a quarterback. If we bring one in they will compete for the starting role and may the best man win. It could Mccown it could be a rookie hell it could be Glennon. Only time will tell
    ____________________________________________________________

    Again, if the QB is drafted at 7, he will be anointed franchise QB right away. The fans will demand he starts over the 35 year old. And if its Manziel, Skip Bayless and the media whores will be demanding he start too. Not worth the headaches at all. QBs drafted in the first round, unless they are clear projects (and why would they be drafted in the first round if they are?), start now in the NFL.

  36. Hank Says:

    Very glad to hear!

  37. chickster Says:

    I want glennen outta here man I need a new team

  38. passthebuc Says:

    Best article in 2 months

  39. Kevin Says:

    I’ve seen them ALL out at the skyway football fields off of the eisenhower on my way home from work. Glad to see them working hard. 100% attendance on voluntary workouts. GRET NEWS!!! Can’t wait to draft McCown late in my Fantasy league after the bucs take Evans or Ebron.

  40. UnderDog Lefty Says:

    Looks like McCown will be the perfect mentor for JF!

  41. RIs_Buc Says:

    This is nice and all but…..

    Remember the “collective bargaining” year when there was no offseason. Freeman had 40+ players at IMG for the better part of a month.

    Howd that work out?

  42. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    “Many outside of the Tampa area(media and fans) think Glennon is pretty decent.”

    ——-

    You said it all right there – OUTSIDE the Tampa area. You really believe these “experts” saw all 13 of his games. You think they saw every snap? Ha ha, yeah right they did! Anyone who saw all his games and has any football knowledge would be very hesitant to put our franchise on his back. Lovie and Licht came in, watched every snap and came to the same conclusion. So you think we should side with the people who don’t watch everything over those that do (and whose jobs are on the line)? Hmmm, interesting. I’ll go ahead and trust my eyes, as well as the eyes of the professionals running the organization. But good news is if all these “experts” love Glennon so much, we should have no problem trading him for a first round draft pick, right? Wouldn’t these teams be beating down our doors for the opportunity to get a young, talented QB like Mike Glennon?

  43. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    tiny tim Says
    @ Buc Bonzai

    “This has nothing to do with Freeman. Murphy was not even playing for the bucs when Freeman led the unofficial workouts. He was on another team. How you seem to draw a comparison to Freeman is beyond me.”

    Okay, I’ll explain it. People around here seem to forget that Freeman led a players only camp nearly every year he was here. I was comparing the two.

    Really not hard to figure out for the people that actually know the Bucs.

  44. Buc1987 Says:

    Hawaiian Buc…and when he’s the Buc’s back up this season. What say you then?

  45. Dan Says:

    Props joe.

    Free speech does not protect visitors to privately owned venues (like websites). You can’t be arrested for saying it but you do not have to endorse speech you do not support on your property, be it business or private.

  46. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    @1987,

    When who’s the backup, Glennon? That would back up EXACTLY what I’ve been saying for the last year – that he’s a good backup QB. So are you now trying to stretch it to where him being the backup means he’s very good? I don’t follow your point. I have never once said he is horrible, and I don’t recall to many others saying that. I just don’t see him as a franchise QB, which is pretty much a necessity to win a championship in today’s NFL. If you don’t have a franchise QB, it’s not going to matter how great your defense, special teams, OL, WR’s, or RB’s are. I’m more than happy to have Glennon as a backup. However, if we do draft a QB in the first two rounds, then it’s going to be a longshot for Glennon to stick on this roster.

  47. Buc1987 Says:

    Hawaiian Buc…I’m saying the “experts” are saying he’s decent. Meaning I think, that they think he’s not leaving the Bucs either. Decent does not mean all world worthy of a 1st round pick in trade. Decent means, he’s going to make a decent back up for McCown. Many “experts” don’t even have QB listed as a need for the Bucs in this draft. I think Glennon is the reason why. Again not because he’s franchise material either, but because he’s going to make a decent back up.

    You’re right though of course if they take a QB in ANY round of this draft I see Glennon being traded or let go. I also won’t have a problem with it at all.

  48. Buc1987 Says:

    Also if they do select a QB in the 1st round. I hope everyone on here expects me to go ga ga for the new guy, because that’s what’s going to happen to me. I’m going to go all in on whoever the kid is. I won’t be able to temper myself either. I’ll be extremely excited. If or when McCown slips up, I’ll be screaming for the rookie. Even if his last name starts with an M and ends in an L. ( No sarcasm intended)

  49. Cody Says:

    Anybody that knows football knows that the Bucs defense and special teams got 100% better the day Lovie Smith walked in the door…The bonus is this Mysterious offense Ted Telford is bringing in…I expect big things from this offense…this team in general…

    Go future “back2back” NFC South Champion Bucs!

  50. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    If any expert doesn’t put QB as a need, it has nothing to do with who is or who isn’t our backup. It means they believe McCown, you know our actual starter, is a franchise QB. I personally am not so sure that we have a franchise QB on the roster, but I would trust McCown over Glennon if you forced me to make a choice. However, he’s obviously not a long term solution, so this may be the year to draft for the future. In my non-educated opinion, we aren’t going to draft a QB a 7 (Manziel will probably be gone), and we will end up drafting either Carr, Bridgewater, or Garropolo with our second pick. In that scenario, I think they’ll let the rookie hold a clipboard for a year (unless of course McCown struggles). If that happens, I would imagine we try our best to trade Glennon on draft day, but I don’t think we’ll get a whole lot for him. Regardless, I don’t think Glennon will be a starter for us, or any other team, in the foreseeable future (unless Schiano gets another job, in which case all bets are off.

  51. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    @1987,

    I love your attitude though if we do draft a QB. That’s the way it should be. We can race to buy a Johnny Football jersey!

  52. L&L Buc Says:

    @Hawaiian/steve We all know you hate Gleenon because you hated Schiano. Your bark has been loud and continuous. If Lovey want do what you demand are you going to turn on him also? As for Gleenon Lovey has already said as much that he likes a lot he has seen in Gleenon. If Lovey cuts or trades Gleenon, you will not see my name on this site again. (that will be my part of the bet) if he is still on the roster will you say you were wrong and you will get behind him and declare your support on your show? I started to suggest you play a round of golf with him, but given his height he would probably out drive you.

    If hes there at 7 I believe Bucs choose Mack .

  53. Chef Paul Says:

    “But good news is if all these “experts” love Glennon so much, we should have no problem trading him for a first round draft pick, right?”

    Could you imagine??!! If that happened, my wife would think I ODed on Viagra.

  54. BoJim Says:

    I’m feeling better and better about McCown and the up coming season. Yessssss!!!

  55. Bucs fan in Chicago Says:

    McCown is a class act. He will mentor a young QB even if the young QB is the starter….I have no doubts.

 
 

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