Is Character Really A Concern?

February 15th, 2011

Joe is confident his readers are monitoring his good friend Justin Pawlowski, the critically-acclaimed WDAE-AM host of “The Blitz,” sometimes heard on Saturdays, who delivers unequaled daily draft coverage for Joe.

Of course, Pawlowski over the next couple of months will focus on what the Bucs need in the draft.

Steve Wyche of believes the Bucs are in need of character.

3. What are the biggest areas of concern?
The character of nucleus players Blount, Aqib Talib, Williams and maybe Tanard Jackson is more of a concern than their talent.

Let’s start with Blount and Williams, who had great rookie seasons. They were top-tier talent coming out of college who fell in the draft — in Blount’s case, fell out of the draft — because of character concerns. Both players stayed the course in 2010 and had great seasons, in large part because they were hungry and eager to prove themselves to teams that passed on them. Williams, especially, has Pro Bowl potential. Blount only signed a one-year deal but Tampa Bay retains his rights. They’ll probably keep him on a short leash in the hope that he continues to develop.

If their success takes away their edge, then their production could decline. Morris has to monitor this.

Joe has zero idea why Wyche would invoke Williams’ name. With all the stabbings and assaults going on with NFL players in the past couple of days, Williams’ “offense” shouldn’t even register a blip on the radar.

Is Wyche also writing about other NFL players who were guilty of the cardinal sin of speeding, really? There must be scores of NFL players who have been popped for speeding since the end of the regular season, but Wyche decides to focus on Williams?

Exactly why?

Now Joe believes Wyche had an interesting point in referencing Talib and Jackson as players who walk a dangeous line due to their behavior, but Williams should not be lumped in with these two guys.

It’s not only grossly unfair to Williams, it’s simply inaccurate and destroys whatever premise Wyche is trying to build.

37 Responses to “Is Character Really A Concern?”

  1. jvato24 Says:

    Williams was only a character risk due to not finishing the season as a senior in college and is an atleast noteable off field concern.

    But mainly what he said about not letting success take away their edge .. that is critical.

    I actually thought Wyche is pretty tuned into the the Bucs and by far the most informed national Reporter on the Bucs.

  2. Thomas 2.2 Says:

    Williams is a HUGE risk of ending up suspended. The reason why he QUIT his Syracuse team was because he knew that he was about to be suspended AGAIN for violating team rules – he was already on probation for multiple violations.

    Also, was also previously suspended from school for cheating, allegedly multiple times.

    We all know about Mike Will’s issue this year, although not acriminal offense it certainly showed a proclivity for poor judgment (it was after 2am and they were flying to calif for a game 6 hours later).

    Blount’s punch of the Boise player was not an isolated incident: He also punched a Titan’s player in an on-field fight that wasn’t a huge deal but taken in totality may explain why the Titan’s exposed him (they expected problems).

    THC Jax should just be written off – if he will smoke away the kind of money that he has – he has a real problem. Talib is a difficult one though – he is hotheaded which suggests a probability of problems but he has not had a recurrence of his pre-draft weed problem.

    These are important players who all have character issues suggestive of future problems – that is what you get though if you want talent and arent willing to pay for it.

    You wait for players with character red flags and risk whose stock has fallen and you take them in later rounds of the draft and make them starters. You sheep may call this brilliant management by the Glazers – we will see – I agree it is if they stay out of trouble. At Least THC Jax has failed in that regard.

  3. eric Says:

    The overall point is a good one, they have to maintain their intensity and drive to build on their success.

    We have seen the one year wonder rookie routine around here before.

    I doubt that will happen with these guys but you never know.

    Williams proved he has plenty of character and the school thing should no longer be an issue.

  4. JDouble Says:

    Blount shouldn’t lumped in with with that crowd either. His only incident was on the field. He lost his composure while on the field and that was in college. He has never been in any sort of trouble off the field and I have read from at least 20 different people that say he is the kindest well mannered guy they know. Unless he does something stupid in the future that deserves criticism, everyone really needs to get off this kids back. It’s like the media is TRYING to make him into a bad guy.

  5. Thomas 2.2 Says:

    Eric, I disagree with you on Williams. I think that he is in fact more of a concern than Blount. Williams had repeated infractions at Syracuse, some involving academic dishonesty. The final straw was that he was in a car accident at 5:00am very far from campus on a night that there was a curfew – that was a serious violation of the probation that he was on due to his history. This is virtually indistinguishable from what occurred here in Tampa on the night before they were traveling to San Fran. Although I agree that it was not criminal, it certainly suggests a failure of maturity.

    Blount has punched three people: Coach Belotti (possibly accidental as the punch was intended for another player); the Boise kid and the Titans player (but that was a practice fight). Anger issues maybe but not necessarily character problems like Williams.

    Blount was a virtual angel since he arrived here.

  6. McBuc Says:

    Williams has been an angel since arriving here too. Not a shock that a 23 year old kid does not show great maturity; however, since when is going a little over the speed limit deemed “immature”. If it is there sure are allot of immature people in this world.

  7. nick Says:

    Thomas is quick to mention whenever one of our players farts in church but at the same time chastised the Bucs for not getting the likes of Santonio Holmes or Brandon Marshall.

  8. McBuc Says:

    I forgot about the moratorium of replying to Thomas…Sorry guys, I will start ignoring him again now…

    Nick, You hit the nail on the head.

  9. Brad Says:

    I agree with Jdouble I don’t think Blount should be lumped in as well as Williams. These guys have done nothing since they have been here to get such scrutiny. I would have thought this article would have come from Ira.

  10. jvato24 Says:

    Brad .. Before you criticize the article try reading in entirety.

  11. Derf Says:

    Maybe the DUI arrest had something to do with lumping Williams in with the others?

    Having said that I watched the police cam and there is no friggin way Williams should have been pulled over, non-theless booked. In fact from the manner in which Mike Williams handleded himself on that tape my respect for the young man improved.

    Now it was in bad judgement to be out at that time of night during the week – but hey we’ve all been there at one time or another right? PASS

  12. Thomas 2.2 Says:

    I laughed at the “fart in church” comment.

    McBuc, it wasnt the speeding that was immature and you know that, it was staying out late and drinking while driving (no not over the limit but he was .06) when you have to travel to a game in a few hours. That, among other things, is what got him in trouble at Syracuse and if you watched the youtube video above was the final straw. Is it impossible for a 23 year old with his history to not go out late from Thursday night until after the game on Sunday?

  13. Derf Says:

    Nick wrote: “Thomas is quick to mention whenever one of our players farts in church but at the same time chastised the Bucs for not getting the likes of Santonio Holmes or Brandon Marshall.”

    He who farts in church sits in their own pew!

  14. oar Says:

    Shame on you! You are to go directly to jail! Do not pass go and do not collect $200!

  15. oar Says:

    Ma always said, I was uglier than fart’n in church!
    BTW is that the same thing as a fart in brazil?

  16. eric Says:

    Williams and Benn seem to be refreshing non-divas to me.

    Unusual for the wide-out position.

    having said that, id still love to have gotten Holmes or Marshall.

  17. gitarlvr Says:

    Thomas never ceases to amaze with his stupidity. He thinks Mike Williams is a HUGE risk to get suspended because of his academic violations in college. So I guess when the NFL starts giving its players English and Algebra exams Mike Williams is in BIG trouble.

  18. oar Says:

    “So I guess when the NFL starts giving its players English and Algebra exams…….”
    They do and they’re called “plays”. LOL!
    I think he’ll be just fine!

  19. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I have never seen or met anyone who hates the Bucs as much as Thomas. That includes fans of other teams. For myself, I hate the Panthers more than any other team, but nowhere near as much as that douche hates the Bucs.

    As for Mike Williams, it’s hilarious that the one person that criticizes him would be Thomass. he mentions all these things that happened in college, all of which he doesn’t know the full details (because the full details were never released). He criticizes Williams for being falsely arrested, even after video evidence clearly shows it wasn’t justified. He also conveniently forgets to mention all the great things Williams has done since he has been in Tampa. He was our first player we drafted to sign. He didn’t care about money, he just wanted to get to work. He also did tons of work in the community, but all that is irrelevant to Thomass. It won’t matter what he or any other Buc player does, Thomass will continue his mission to hate everything Buccaneer. It’s so pathetic that he has nothing else in his life but to come on and criticize the team.

  20. Hire Greg Olson! Says:

    Thomas is right. Cheaters never win in the NFL. You think the Patriots and Bill Belichick got 3 super bowls in the last decade because they were chea….uh-oh…

  21. Dew Says:

    The players should start hiring private dicks to dig up dirt on Ahole writers. 🙂

  22. thomas 2.2 Says:

    If Mike Will did great work in the community I commend him I just didnt hear about it.

    I didn’t know that Bill Bellichick was put on probation for multiple cases of academic dishonesty in college, if so, that evidences a possible character issue as well. Spygate was a rules infractrion but whether Bellichick ordered that it be done was questionable and I recall his position being that all teams were doing it (not a valid excuse but may negate knowledge of the rule).

    I do not hate the bucs, they are my favorite team since I was a young child attending my first game in 79 and I was a multi-seat season ticket holder for 20 years. I am not happy with the state of the org so I express my opinion on this blog which I believe is open to all opinions – not just sappy fanatical unrealistic pro-organization rhetoric. I do hate what has happened in terms of spending on players, org perception in the community and nationally, horrible attendance, blackouts, poorly qualified coaches and GM’s etc.

    The economy was a contributor but not as much as 3-13 and the gutting of the team only to replace them cheap rookies. If the team makes the playoffs great, if they miss again I will continue to weigh-in!

  23. Joke Says:


    Wyche is clearly talking about Williams’ issues in college, not his arrest this year. In fact, he said that Williams, like Bount, “stayed the course in 2010”. I thought it was pretty widely accepted that Williams was a first-round talent who dropped to the fourth because of his problems at Syracuse.

    That said, I have no real concerns about Williams. He busted his ass and played hard for the Bucs. He was a team guy. And he took responsibility for putting himself in a bad situation with the arrest. I’m sure he’ll be fine.

  24. MOBucs Says:

    In all honesty, I hated the idea of bringing in both Williams and Blount because of their past problems. They didn’t seem to fit Rah and Dom’s plan of bringing in responsible, smart leaders. I’m so glad I was dead wrong about them! Williams and Blount have been model teammates off the field and their work on the field needs no mentioning. Everything I have ever read about these two since they became Bucs has been positive. In my opinion, the Bucs have much bigger concerns than character issues. Rushing the passer and stopping the run worry me much more then a couple of young studs with slight blemishes on their records.

  25. gitarlvr Says:

    Hawaiian your so right. Thomas is not a Bucs fan. He hates everything about the team. He hates the players. He hates the coaches. Why is he here? The answer is that he has a mental disorder(s).

  26. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    The problem is, Thomas, you are so biased against the team, your arguments are easily seen as nothing more than hate. When every single article you comment about is spewed with your negativity (and I mean every single one), you lose all credibility, and people don’t respect your opinion. Last year when we were winning games, you either didn’t show up, or still chimed in with negativity and excuses as to why we won. That is nothing but sour grapes, and that qualifies you as a hater.

    The organization is headed in the right direction. How quickly we get there is a matter of opinion, but we are in much better shape now than what we were 1, or even 2 years ago. Even if we had kept all our veterans (Brooks, Dunn, Hilliard, etc.), they would be pretty much done by now anyway (father time gets everyone). Even if you want to argue the coaches were not qualified, they are now. Like the players, they are only going to get better with experience.

    You can either be a grouchy old man pissing and moaning about the team because you are unhappy with your life, or you can support them and enjoy the new team. Regardless, this is who the Bucs are going to be, no matter how much b!tching you do.

  27. RastaMon Says:

    A persons character should always be the first threshold before extending an invitation ….simple

  28. Hire Greg Olson! Says:

    “character” – NFL speak for the ability to not get caught.

  29. Mr. Lucky Says:

    Character for NFL players.

    In my opinion if there was a definition you would see pictures of Warren Dunn (and what he did for single moms in both Tampa and Atlanta).

    You’d also see a picture of Derrick Brooks taking the kids on road trips to Africa and other places.

    Those were two Bucs who had character to spare – isn’t it interesting how they both were fan favorites also?

  30. BigMacAttack Says:

    Warren Dunn. Nice.

    Sorry Luck, just messing with you.

  31. nick Says:

    How anyone cannot be a fan of what is currently going on with the Bucs is beyond me.

  32. eric Says:

    Dang sure right about that Mr. Lucky. Can’t do it any better than 55 and 28.

  33. Pete Dutcher Says:

    On the farting in church issue…
    They are called “pews” for a reason.

    On the character issue…
    We live in a world of extremes…and Bucs fans are no different. Whereas Thomas might take “bad character issues” to the extreme, other fans take things to the oposite extreme.

    I do believe there is a valid reason for concern on character for the Bucs. We have Tanard, who has been busted twice by the NFL for substance abuse. Jeremy Stevens also got released over the same issue.

    Talib is as violent as Blount. Remember his rookie year? A RB was cut because he and Talib exchanged fists…reportedly. He slapped a cabbie too. Last year he went after players on the field and teammates had to hold him back (meaning the 2009 season).

    Look at Trueblood. He has such an issue with temper that two years ago it was costing us games. He did do better this past year though.

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m not assuming they will go out and do something bad. I’m just saying that there is valid reason for concern.

    That said…
    There is not a whole lot the Bucs can do about it with a lockout coming. They have taken some risks on guys other teams steered clear of, and if the Bucs were a constant influence, I don’t think we would see many issues. But these are young guys that will not be able to let things out on the field…so it’s very possible something is going to happen off the field.

    I hope not, but I would not be surprised.

    The key elements to prevent it…
    …are Josh Freeman and Gerald McCoy. They need to step up and assert themselves as absolute leaders of their units.

    Josh needs to insist on they entire Offense getting together and McCoy needs to do the same with the Defense.

    They need to keep their teammates busy so they do not have time to get into trouble.

    But there is also another concern…
    If players get hurt while working out during the lockout, it will not be covered by NFL or Team doctors. That could spell disaster for injured players.

    Not only that, but the players already injured will have to rehab on their own.

  34. MichiganBucsFan Says:

    I may get chastised for this but I see no problem with the article. I don’t personally see any future problems with Blount or Williams, but its completely fair for a sports writer to say that its something for the coach to keep an eye on. They did have problems in the past, and although they’ve seemed to have just as much, if not more character than any other player on the team this year, 1 year of no problems doesn’t guarantee no future ones. I hope their are no future problems, but I am aware that it is possible their could be.

  35. gotbbucs Says:

    Not caring to go to class or study western civilization, throwing a punch in a football game or practice, and speeding are hardly big concerns to me.
    If Ray Lewis can get away with murder then I think I can probably be alright with speeding tickets and assignments being turned in late.

    Man the offseason sucks when this is the kind of sh!t that we have to discuss.

    Thomas, quit sh!tting on the current Bucs players just because Raheem brought them in. After all, your boy wonder Gruden brought in such angels as Michael Pittman, David Boston, Antonio Bryant, Tanard Jackson, Aqib Talib, and Jeremy Stevens. What Williams and Blount have done is baby sh!t compared to that crew.

  36. m.wesley Says:

    hey thomas mike tomlin inheherited a you see wat gruden should have done

  37. m.wesley Says:

    i know you wont answer