Stocker Could Log More Snaps Than Expected

May 28th, 2013

luke stocker

Just reading the tea leaves and sifting through the scant quotes about the tight end position since Dallas Clark left the Bucs/unofficially retired, it sure seems on paper that Tom Crabtree is your starting tight end.

Now Joe knows some Bucs fans slammed empty beer glasses because Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik didn’t draft a tight end. In some ways, that would have been a wasted pick. Despite those Bucs fans wanted, it actually was a non-move driven by Bucs offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan and his hybrid Giants offense in which the tight end is not valued as a receiver.

Joe spoke to someone a few months ago who met quarterback Josh Freeman in a public setting. There, Joe’s acquaintance told him, Freeman was asked if the Bucs should draft/sign a top shelf tight. Freeman shrugged his shoulders and said, “We don’t use the tight end that much in this offense anyway.”

Crabtree, various Packers beat writers have documented, is a strong blocker and some scouts — including Bucs coach Greg Schiano — believe Crabtree has the capability of being a fine downfield pass catcher. He flashed that ability from time to time in the limited chances he got on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field.

But here is why Joe thinks Luke Stocker would get plenty of action even if Crabree is the starter: Crabtree has never started for a full season. Remember, Crabtree was in a logjam with the Packers stuck behind Jermichael Finley. In three seasons, Crabtree has started 16 games.

No one really knows how Crabtree will hold up physically for a full 17-week season as a starter.

This is why Joe is of the belief that Stocker would log quite a few snaps — to ease Crabtree into the transition from a part-time player to a full-time starter.

15 Responses to “Stocker Could Log More Snaps Than Expected”

  1. Joc Says:

    2 wasted picks

  2. Mike J Says:

    Clark was targeted 65 times; Stocker caught 16 passes. So, on average, 5 of the 35 passes Freeman threw per game went at 2 TE’s.Not a huge percentage but pretty significant.Crabtree might up the percentage.
    I thnk we will see more two-tight formations on running downs, maybe with a single back most of the time.Stocker with his weight gain will be like an extra tackle, & Crab will be the move guy.

  3. Bill Says:

    It’s a been a while since a team basically only employed third tackles as tight ends. Looks like the Bucs are headed that way.

  4. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I believe Stocker will be named the starter on day one. I think Crabtree will be depth.

  5. MR.T Says:

    Stocker, if he is now 275, will be the blocker, at that weight cant see him getting separation from many lb’s on passes. Crabtree or someone else, the pass catching TE.

  6. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Joe,

    With another OTA starting today, What day this week will you and others be allowed to go out there to make observations?

  7. the_buc_realist Says:

    The Pop-star always knows how to crowbar his draft picks into the lineup. Who cares about the win/loss record, as long as the boy-genius gm is among the top of having draft picks on the team!

  8. Stanglassman Says:

    Stocker is listed 253 lbs, how do you know he has gained that much weight?

  9. Nick P Says:

    Then I would question, why don’t we use the TE more? Supposedly we are a running team. Wouldn’t Josh benefit from a safety blanket 5-10 yards away? If Doug gets us 4 yards on first down, 2nd and 6 is where a good TE is invaluable.

  10. tonytwocents Says:

    Stanglassman Says:

    “Stocker is listed 253 lbs, how do you know he has gained that much weight?”

    Justin Palowski tweeted it:

    “#Bucs GM Mark Dominik said that TE Luke Stocker is up to 275 lbs during his interview w/ me on @987TheFan today.”

  11. Biff Barker Says:

    @ mike j
    I’m thinking we will be throwing out of the 2 TE set since it causes inherent mismatches for the secondary because you have to respect Martin as a receiver too.
    It’s doubtful the TE’s will be on many deeper routes in this scenario, but still effective when factoring a big bodied guy getting some extra YAC.
    An added benefit is how this can help set up the shots downfield.

  12. tonytwocents Says:

    I want to see what Luke Stocker can do as a starter. He’s been stuck behind 2 pro bowlers since being drafted, but he’s made some plays. Plus this is his 3rd year working with Freeman.

    But like Mr. T said, I hope his 275lbs doesnt affect his ability to get separation. Thats a LOT of weight for an all around TE. Itd be a shame if it was predetermined that he’d be a blocker, so they told him to bulk up. He deserves a shot as a starter.

    the_buc_pessimist, what is your problem? just a mess of negative energy.

  13. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    the_buc_realist Says:
    “The Pop-star always knows how to crowbar his draft picks into the lineup. Who cares about the win/loss record, as long as the boy-genius gm is among the top of having draft picks on the team!”

    Wow.

    How do you even enjoy football with so much sarcasm directed in the Bucs direction?

    Ah, who am I to talk? I’ve been sarcastic a bit in recent years too. I finally realized nothing I say matters, so I might as well take what comes, go to games and find things to enjoy instead of things to hate.

  14. TimBukTwo@OneBucPalace Says:

    I think when training camp is over and they have to choose a depth chart, Tom Crabtree will have surpassed Stocker as the #1 TE. He’s way more athletic than Luke even when Luke was at his slimmest. Tom can do both, block sufficiently, and seperate for catches, which makes him way more valuable even if the TE is somewhat devalued in this offense.

  15. Joe Says:

    With another OTA starting today, What day this week will you and others be allowed to go out there to make observations?

    Wednesday.

 
 

Leave a Reply

Current day month ye@r *