Jonathan Casillas A Step Ahead From 2012

May 21st, 2013

jonathan casillas

When Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik signed free agent strongside linebacker Jonathan Casillas, there were various ways to look at the move.

Casillas could be just part of what Bucs coach Greg Schiano craves — competition. Or, Casillas could be the successor to Quincy Black.

Either way for Casillas, he’s ahead of where he has been in recent seasons, even if the Buccaneer Way is still a bit foreign too him. Last year ,Casillas was injured and unable to go to through OTAs with the Saints.

“It does help a lot,” Casillas told Joe just after OTA practice Monday. “It’s kind of a rare thing for me to be healthy at this time of the year. Good to be out there running around with the fellas and not so much the physical things but the mental things as well.”

Casillas was, in a way, a victim of circumstance. The Saints brought in overrated Rob Ryan as their new defensive coordinator, and Ryan is a 34 defense kinda guy. Casillas is a 43 outside linebacker kind of guy. So he was a man without a team when Ryan arrived in The Big Easy.

Currently, Casillas seems to just be happy competing on a practice field in May for a change.

It’s good man, good to get the juices flowing,” Casillas said. “It’s good to finally come out here and compete.”

Though Schiano’s practices are conducted with a sense of urgency, Casillas believed Sean Payton’s practices were even more so.

“It’s not as intense as Payton’s but the point is there, the purpose is there, the intent is there,” Casillas said. “We got after it really fast. The layout is something I have to get used to. Just out here trying to get my terminology down and learn this defense.”

It’s still way too early to determine who may have the inside track at replacing Black. That is what preseason is for. While he has the chance however, Casillas is trying to make an impression upon Bucs coaches.

“We have a great group of guys on both sides of the ball and the defensive guys are very fiery,” Casillas said. “We have a lot of guys with speed and power. We are all competitors, we are all competing. That linebackers room is very competitive.”

15 Responses to “Jonathan Casillas A Step Ahead From 2012”

  1. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    “It’s kind of a rare thing for me to be healthy…”

    That’s reassuring. I hope he stays healthy and can contribute but I doubt it.

  2. Lakeland fan Says:

    I think you mean Rob Ryan,Rex’s brother.

  3. peter king Says:

    this guy is really our only liabilty on defense I wish we would have signed smith from jax, but mark got me everyone else I asked for besides cribbs so I guess im ok!

  4. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    He may have screwed up, by saying Schiano’s practices are not as intense as Sean Paytons!
    That is borderline disrespectful, to his new coach, who prides himself on intensity.

  5. Couch Fan Says:

    Its not disrespectful if its the truth…. There is no code that says you have to pretend your coach runs the toughest practices in the league.

  6. Andrew 1 Says:

    looks like Im going to have to be patience when it comes to finding out who our new starting SLB will be.

    on a side note, Rob Ryan is the saints new DC?!?! where the hell have I been. dang, there might be a resurgence in new orleans. bad news for us.

  7. T in Orlando Says:

    I wouldn’t worry too much about the Saints D this year. Teams that transition from 3-4 to 4-3 or vice versa, typically struggle for a year or two, because the turnover needed in the personnel, as there are very few players that are suited for either scheme.

    The Saints offense on the other hand is scary, if no other reason, i believe Payton and Brees are coming into this season pissed off, and will want to take it out on every defense they come across.

  8. Joe Says:

    looks like Im going to have to be patience when it comes to finding out who our new starting SLB will be.

    Like August, and perhaps September.

  9. Joe Says:

    andrew:

    on a side note, Rob Ryan is the saints new DC?!?! where the hell have I been. dang, there might be a resurgence in new orleans. bad news for us

    Pppfffttt… Rob Ryan may be the most overrated defensive coordinator in the NFL. He’s on, what, his third team in like seven years and maybe one playoff appearance?

  10. Joe Says:

    Apple:

    He may have screwed up, by saying Schiano’s practices are not as intense as Sean Paytons!
    That is borderline disrespectful, to his new coach, who prides himself on intensity.

    What if it’s true?

    Yeah, Schiano is going to cut a guy because he said another coach had a more intense OTA practice, right.

  11. Macabee Says:

    The term OLB can be confusing because it includes both WLBs and SLBs. They are usually two different body types and can be different skills sets depending on the defensive scheme employed.

    According to a recent article by PR on Quincy Black’s replacement, Schiano and Sheridan don’t emphasize the SLB position as much as some teams as they played their base 4-3 only around 40% of their defensive snaps in 2012. The Bucs spent a majority of the time in a nickel (two LBs and one extra DB) and in dime coverage (one LB and two extra DBs) and in each case the SLB comes off the field.

    Even though they de-emphasize the position, it is still an important part of stopping the run, and the player that fills the role must also be athletic enough to drop into pass coverage at times, especially if the team drops into a Cover 2 or Cover 3 scheme. In the NFC South QBs are as likely to throw on 1st or 2nd down as they are on 3rd down.

    Casillas has never played the SLB position as he was a WLB at the Saints. Not saying that he can’t play in Schiano’s scheme, just seems like an odd choice for the position. I think I read somewhere that Dekota Watson on Monday was practicing with the first team. I guess we’ll have to wait and see who wins the job!

    I also read a piece at BucNation that said that Dave Wanstedt is wanting to bring in Dom DeCicco, former SLB from Pitt that was recently released by the Bears.

  12. Piratic Says:

    “I think I read somewhere that Dekota (sic) Watson on Monday was practicing with the first team.”

    I love it if that’s true!! I’ve been high on #56 since I first saw him as a Buc. If the light bulb comes on, he’s a playmaker.

  13. Macabee Says:

    Piratic,

    Here’s where I read about Watson.

    http://www.bucsnation.com/2013/5/20/4348636/dekoda-watson-johnthan-banks-buccaneers-position-battles

  14. Mike J Says:

    Casilas has 8 starts in the league, but he was almost exclusively a will in N.O.. Remains to be seen if he can cope at sam; he is a small guy.

  15. TheRealVince Says:

    Watson doesn’t have SLB size but with as little as we generally use a SAM backer I think he has the most upside to fill that position.

 
 

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