Draft Approach Hinges On Urgency

March 21st, 2010

"So when exactly do we need a winning record?"

Joe’s asked all the time, ‘What will the Bucs do in the draft?’

Lately, Joe spits out the same answer: ‘That depends on how secure Mark Dominik and Raheem The Dream feel they are in their jobs.’

The reality is that Dominik and Raheem The Dream will have one approach if they feel they need wins to survive past 2010, and another approach if they are simply trying to add talent and re-build the team with a precise map for success in future seasons.

Sure, the two approaches could go hand in hand, but that’s highly unlikely.

Joe believes that if Dominik and Raheem The Dream are feeling pressure to win now and keep their paychecks, then the Bucs will draft two wide receivers and a running back among their first four picks (three rounds).

Wide receiver and running back are arguably the two positions that could have the greatest immediate impact on the Bucs in terms of wins and losses. And fast improvement in those areas is most likely to accelerate the development of Josh Freeman, whose successful progression is closely tied to the futures of Dominik and the head coach.

Going that route improves the odds for 2010, versus focusing on other positions where players need more time to develop.

A group of potential playmakers on offense will help prevent the young quarterback from regressing, and possibly flat out win more games this season than, say, finding Ronde Barber’s future replacement and only one receiver in the second round, a promising safety in the third, plus a first-round snag of a defensive tackle, who surely will need at least a season to develop.

If the pressure’s not there to win now, then Joe has to believe the Bucs will draft heavy on defense, with a wide receiver in the second round and maybe another in the late rounds.

Raheem The Dream is a defensive coach, who no doubt believes he can have the NFL’s No. 1 defense with the right horses in his stable. He’s got to be salivating at the thought of adding as much defensive talent as possible.

Plus, Joe senses the Bucs overrate their current offensive talent and the ability of Greg Olson. Without feeling pressure to win, Joe can easily see Dominik and Raheem The Dream believing that simply a season of stability on offense will deliver enough improvement (for them) in 2010.

30 Responses to “Draft Approach Hinges On Urgency”

  1. TJ Tillman Says:

    You hit a key point it is 50/50 the draft and Freeman’s progression. He showed promise but 18 Int’s in 9 games are alot, that is not counting the ones the defeense dropped. Later in the year when they got a winning streak they depended on the run, like they siad they were going to do when jaqz was the O-cordinator. Think about Flacco, Rotheliesburgher, Sanchez as rookies good running game they were not asked to be like drew brees . So drafting a game breaker running back is a priorty only problem we need like 2 game breaking recevieers too. And that is just scary cause rookies are hit and miss

  2. Eric Says:

    A firm grasp of reality is not their forte.

    If I had to guess, I think the Dream will insist on a lot of defense, and not a quick offensive fix.

  3. 2 Buc Bill Says:

    If Freeman is going to succeed, he needs the O-Line to step up and start hitting guys in the mouth. Trueblood sucks, and who knows if Sears will be able to contribute at a high level this season. I’m surprised more people haven’t talked about going O-Line with one of our early picks. I was sold on one of the DTs for the past couple of months, but with every day that passes, Okung just seems to make more and more sense, especially if we can trade back and still snag dude. A big part of a QB’s development depends on him being able to drop back and know he’s got time to throw. Just sayin’.

  4. 2 Buc Bill Says:

    not Sears, meant Joseph…sorry.

  5. George C. Costanza Says:

    We oughta take a look at Kevin Curtis, recently released from Philly, and, yes, even Javon Walker, the released Raider.

    In the draft we should go DT, WR, CB, OG in the first 3 rounds. Wait for later to add an RB.

  6. zech Says:

    We should draft a DTackle and then wr and OLB and then Rb and then safty and then D-End and then cornerback

  7. Mike Lang Says:

    Honestly, it doesn’t seem very fair if the Glazier’s want Raheem to win right away but aren’t allowing the money for top end free agents to help him do so. My guess is he has at least 2 years which means Suh or McCoy in the first (assuming 1 will still be there) and most likely WR and a DE or Safety in the second.

    The truth is that our first 3 picks could realistically make us better in 2010.
    I also like the brute force and fiery nature of RB Blount as a 3rd round pick should he still be there. He was described as a “Bulldozer” in the Senior Bowl. We could use some good ol’ fashioned bulldozing in our backfield!

  8. Jackson Says:

    I’m really trying to get JBF back into my daily routine of Buc viewing, but its stories like this that keep me away. How many rookie WR’s have a huge impact the first year let alone translate into to more wins. It’s a NO BRAINER that we have to get help on the D-line, no matter what approach you take, DT in particular. If we cant stop the run, we lose PERIOD! Calvin Johnson is example 1A.

  9. sgw94 Says:

    I disagree with the premise. The truth is you win quicker by adding defense than you do by adding to offense. How many years do you see these teams with high flying offenses that never make the playoffs? It happens all the time, most recently down in New Orleans before they finally hired a good defensive coordinator and signed better defensive talent. On the flip side you look at the best defensive teams and by in large they will be in the playoffs. The Jets offense sucked balls this year even with their running game but their defense was good enough to almost take them to the superbowl after not making the playoffs the year before. Its actually pretty simple when you think about it. If your defense doesn’t give up many points then your offense plus your special teams only have to score maybe one touchdowns and then kick some field goals to win. You always have a chance and that includes the defense scoring as well. Getting some wide receivers and a running back won’t help our offense get to where they are scoring 30 pts a game and that’s what they will need to score if we spend those picks on offense and don’t address the defense, real talk.

  10. Jonny Says:

    At least 50% of the very few supporters Rah and Dom have at the moment is because of the promise they saw out of Josh Freeman last year.

    But, I doubt if adding few receivers and RBs is all that necessary. All Rah and Dom need is Freeman’s progression. What ever Freeman did last year, he would have done it with or without Antonio Bryant.

    You had Stovall catching everything that came his way, Stroughter doing the same and Winslow getting open easily along with his catching.

    It was Olson that sucked balls in play calling last season and the O-line that was so inconsistent in pass blocking. Receivers were a problem only after that.

    I will say that Freeman showed flashes despite Olson and his line which is why I think he will get better with an off season.

  11. Jonny Says:

    Mr. White. I understand your point, but I think Joe is right on point when he says WRs and RBs make immediate impact and I doubt if Rah and Dom really care about team’s future over their current job situation.

    You obviously are more qualified in commenting on this issue, but to my knowledge DTs and DEs take their time to make an impact don’t they.

    As a Bucs fan I would like to see DTs, DEs and CBs being drafted. How ever I doubt if Dom and Rah are in agreement with us here.

  12. Tom Says:

    The Bucs will not draft 2 WR’s and 1 RB in the first 4 picks. Entire draft, likely, but not the first 4 picks.

    Rookie WR’s are known for having one of the toughest transitions and are some of the least likely to make an immediate impact of all positions drafted. If you took two at a high position (think Washington) you’re looking at them fighting each other for PT, and likely only one of them getting much while the other sits on the bench. As bad as the WR corp is, Stroughter will man the slot and one vet (pick one, any one) will remain a starter. Leaving one rookie prime slot for PT. Two? Not so much.

    If Bradford goes Number 1 you are talking about a DT locked in as one of your top 4. It’s basically a lock that a WR will go in the next 3 selection, but a near lock they will take a DE/CB within the top 4 picks as well leaving little to no chance they will spend 3 of their first four picks on O.

  13. CreamsiclePasties Says:

    This team needs defense…no doubt about it

    But let’s pretend they swap first rounders with Denver for Brandon Marshall, and then snag CJ Spiller at 11……with K2 & Freeman already on the squad, throw in Stroughter for good measure….you can’t tell me that doesn’t sound like fun

  14. Matt Says:

    I would prefer we use the draft to upgrade our defense.

    However, Morris and Dominik’s fate is tied to Freeman. The simple fact is this: If Freeman looks like a franchise QB next year, they will probably be given another chance in 2011. Offensive weapons are the easiest way to accomplish that.

  15. polkcountydude Says:

    Tom hit the nail on the head. After QB, WR is the most difficult position to adjust to for new draftees. WRs have to know coverages nearly as well as the QB to successfully get open in the NFL. I would give a link but I’m too lazy to figure out how to embed links here. If the Bucs draft a WR early, he will almost certainly not have an impact in his rookie season.

  16. thomas Says:

    sgw94-right on.

    rb’s are the least valuable and most interchangeable of all positions i.e. denver, pittsburgh, baltimore.

    wr is a need and outside playmakers are valuable.

    but qb, d-line, o-line, lb and corners win championships. this team is probably well below average in all of those areas, except maybe corner.

  17. Eric Says:

    I dunno Steve, this isn’t Tony Dungy’s NFL anymore.

    Look at the play off teams, other than the Jets. All had high powered potent offenses with sophisticated passing attacks.

    I for one am a bit tired of watching buccaneer offenses without any playmakers.

    Plus, wouldn’t you agree that if you commit to a young franchise QB with the big arm that you need offensive weapons for him?

    That being said, i am aware of course that being the bottom ranked team against the run is a total disaster. But, the big DT at number three ought to help that.

  18. Marc Says:

    “not Sears, meant Joseph…sorry.”

    Are you absolutley,positivley sure you meant Joseph?? SERIOUSLY?
    Davin Jospeh and Jeff Faine are hands down, thwo two best lineman we have on our team. There is no arguing that. Its not a question of “if” they will produce but rather “how” they will produce.

  19. 2 Buc Bill Says:

    exactly…i said we don’t know if he can produce at a “high level”, which we don’t

  20. BigMacAttack Says:

    I think Dominick will draft heavily on Defense this year, mostly early, and I don’t think any of us will be disappointed. I can also see Mark using some 2011 picks to move up and down at certain times. My only complaint right now is that the Draft is still one month away.

  21. KevinK Says:

    Great argument. This is what I like about this site. I think Joe’s talking more about the percepton game and hitching their wagons to Freeman more than anything else. And you can all say what you want, the Bucs are hurting for receivers. If they bring in a pair to grow with Freeman and hopefully hit the jackpot with one, then the game has changed.

    I thought this defense was already a lot better and of excellent caliber ot compete with anyone and beat New Orleans? Wonder what RahDom think about that?

  22. Louie Says:

    First, let me say I don’t think the Bucs are going to be successful this year no matter who they draft. Just how many of last year’s draft picks had a major impact last year (started on a regular basis)? One, right?. Having said that, I’m with Steve — you win championships with defense, so start there.

  23. Radio Mushmouth Says:

    We have watched inept offenses here in Tampa for 34 straight years .
    So it’s not surprising none of you give a shit about drafting offense.

    But if we’re going to suck anyways ( which we will) , I wouldn’t mind seeing us score some points and be exciting doing it.

  24. sgw94 Says:


    Here is the thing, you look at all of the best offenses in the league and they have stars at almost every skill position. You look at the best defenses and you have a few stars sprinkled with regular joes for the most part. You take away Revis and Bart Scott from the Jets and what do you have? You take away Ray Lewis and Ed Reed from the Ravens what do you have? We saw what happened to Pittsburgh when they lost Troy Polamalu. But then you look at the great offenses and they usually have so many weapons at skill positions that one guy doesn’t make a difference. Look at the Saints with 3 running backs, two hellafied tightends and more wideouts than they know what to do with. Colts with pro bowlers at tight end and wideout and they have so much talent that they could afford to lose a starting WR without losing a beat. Don’t get me started on Arizona with Boldin, Fitzgerald, Warner, et al.

    We need a lot on both sides of the ball but you will always be able to get away with just adding a few pieces on defense than you will just adding a few pieces on offense. Not only that, if you can’t stop someone from scoring then you are putting your offense and most of the time your quarterback in a position to get crushed because they will always be in catchup mode having to throw the ball when everybody knows you have to throw it. If you can name me 2 wide receivers and a running back coming out in this draft and I mean ANY 2 wide receivers and running back no matter how highly rated that you think we can plug in this year and up our scoring average to over 25 points I would love to hear their names. Because again, that’s what kind of point production our offense will need if we use those picks on offense instead of defense this year, knowing that we aren’t going to be active on either side of the ball in free agency.

    So please, somebody give me those names. I can give you the names of defensive players who could get our average against down to around 17 pts or less but personally I think we do need at least one WR in the early rounds. Id say the first 3 picks should be DT corner/safety and a WR and then after that whichever we didn’t get out of corner/safety DE another DT and several WRs in the later rounds and rookie free agents.

    Here’s the thing, we can draft offense in the first three rounds and we will score more but we will also lose more. So maybe fans like scoring and can put up with losing in that situation. But if we go defense we may be more boring on offense but we will also win more games. That’s my opinion but I think historically its born out as fact. To Eric’s point if you look at the Superbowl for instance make no mistake about it the better defense won that game. I think all things being equal the Colts had the better offense but unfortunately they had to play against the Saints defense instead of their own. And even with the Saints D you take away Vilma and Sharper and where are they? Probably not in the playoffs Id say.

  25. gotbbucs Says:

    Just wanted to add this to Steve’s post, the more opportunities the offense has the better the chances that they’ll put more points up. That comes from having a defense that can get off of the field and currently we don’t have that. I’ll agree that we need to find two or three offensive skill players in this draft but the majority of our early picks need to be defense.

  26. Eric Says:


    Most excellent response.

    I guess I am coming from more of a fans prospective, and would love to see the bucs have one of those highly skilled offenses for a change.

    But, if they get a smashmouth defense together like the old days, I surely won’t complaint.

    Lets just hope we don’t end up with a lousy offense AND a defense that can’t stop anyody. Nobody has the formula to win with that!

  27. sgw94 Says:


    To your last line I say AMEN!

  28. JDouble Says:

    I don’t think Dom and Rheem are tied together. Rheem’s job security may depend on the amount of wins we get next year, but I doubt Dom’s job is in jeopardy. I think when it comes right down to it, Dom is the decider when it comes to who we draft. He will not try to save Raheem by drafting differently some how. He will do his best do draft the best available players and have a great draft, because that is what his job security depends on.

  29. Eric Says:

    That may be true, but i don’t really believe the Glazers remotely expected a 3-13 season last year. I think they bought into the blame Gruden crowd and the player complaints about him and actually expected improvement.

    I also think they are realing a bit, so i strongly suspect both Dom and Rah are on a very short leash. Its very likely IMO that the CBA uncertainty is the only thing that saved them this year.

    I have nuttin to really back that up, but just an impression from listening to what little they have said, and their past behavior. Anything short of a major turnaround and their both doomed.

  30. RahDomDaBest Says:

    I think we are also thin at LB… I don’t care what you guys say about our LBs… I they are getting a pass on the defense not stopping the run.

    DT, CB/Safety and LB… then more defense.

    Look, we WIL NOT WIN WITH FREEMAN NEXT YEAR… give that one up already… let him spend another year developing… he needs to stop throwing picks, convert on 3rd down more and hand off, hand off, hand off.

    Because the best thing the Bucs could do would be to draft 10 defensive players… this would immediately improve the defense…