Phillips Might Move To LinebackerMarch 18th, 2009
While Joe isn’t about to throw Bucs general manager Mark Dominik under the bus only a few weeks into his new gig as general manager, it’s becoming more and more obvious that Dominik made a terrible mistake in letting go linebackers Derrick Brooks and Cato June.
Granted, linebacker wasn’t a strength for the Bucs last season. But it wasn’t a gaping weakness either. It sure is now.
Since getting rid of Brooks and June, the Bucs have done nothing in free agency to plug those holes and haven’t made any trades to add depth to the position (as Dominik did at tight end and nearly pulled off at quarterback). So thin are the Bucs at linebacker that the Bucs are talking about moving oft-injured safety Jermaine Phillips to weakside linebacker.
Oddly enough, this information comes from Buccaneers.com.
The Buccaneers are not putting all of their eggs in one basket, of course. The team is still interested in seeing what it has in such in-house linebacker candidates as Quincy Black, Geno Hayes and Adam Hayward, and there remains the possibility of an addition at the position through free agency and the draft. Still, the team-oriented Phillips, who is called “Flip” by most of his fellow Buccaneers, didn’t hesitate to take on this new challenge.
As can be expected since this article is on the Bucs’ website, the story is so full of wildly crazy spin it would make Sean Hannity blush. The article compares Phillips’ moving to linebacker with Shelton Quarles moving from strongside linebacker to middle linebacker.
Moving from safety to linebacker is another world compared to switching positions at linebacker. Besides, one of the critical elements of playing linebacker is to tackle. Phillips likes to tackle with his arms more than his body which is why he’s always breaking an arm.
Hey Dominik, just do yourself and the team a major favor, swallow your pride, and get Derrick Brooks back to One Buc Palace.