Aqib Talib The Coach

June 28th, 2011

Like virtually every person in the Tampa Bay region that calls himself a sportswriter, Joe was at the IMG Academy for the first day of Josh Freeman’s three-day minicamp, replete with classroom sessions, weight training and the dreaded two-a-days.

Joe could hardly find a player that was hating life, though Gerald McCoy did admit he was struggling with the Florida heat compared to the California heat he was battling throughout the offseason.

The players Joe spoke with generally seemed excited to be back with their teammates and to be on a football field again, albeit in shorts and T-shirts and using IMG football coaches rather than Raheem Morris and his staff.

Two things struck Joe: How players not thought to be leaders accepted leadership responsibility with the absence of their normal position coaches. They took over as substitute coaches of sorts.

One was GMC himself. He physically took rookie Adrian Clayborn under his wing, often showing him how to perform stunts and moves and putting an arm around Clayborn’s shoulder like a father figure.

It really took Joe aback. Here was a guy who didn’t even play a full season his rookie year, had many games where he was frustrated with the (lack of) coaching from Todd Wash, and now there was GMC giving Clayborn whatever knowledge he had.


Then, Joe had another surprise. Joe was talking with cornerback E.J. Biggers and Joe asked Biggers who was coaching up the secondary, like Freeman was the offense and GMC was the defensive line.

Biggers’ answer? Aqib Talib.

“We are all young, somebody has to be the leader,” Biggers said. “Somebody has to step up to the plate. What [GMC] is doing for his defensive linemen, we have guys doing that for the defensive backs, Talib. Yeah, he’s doing that for the defensive backs. We help get each other better.”

Like his teammates, Talib really seemed to be enjoying himself following the afternoon session. He was laughing and joking as he walked off the IMG football fields.

Sure didn’t seem like a guy buried with worries.

8 Responses to “Aqib Talib The Coach”

  1. bucnoleguy22 Says:

    think you can say what you want about the off the field stuff but these boys clealy respect and like talib..sure hope this kid can clean up his stuff so he can stay on the field. Maybe it’s to late.

  2. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Is it possibe to give more insight on how everyone looked and/or played? Did anyone stand out as being in great looking shape, or out of shape for that matter? Even though it’s basically flag football, did anyone’s play in particular catch your eye?

  3. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    @HawaiianBucs — Almost ridiculous to go there. Guys aren’t in uniform or jerseys. It’s also not set up where you can get right up close to all the action. Grimm admitted to sucking wind, but he’s coming back from injury. We had a post on that earlier. Not much to glean from this, other than it being organized, guys showing leadership and the turnout.

  4. Joe Says:

    Hawaiian Buc:

    Tomorrow morning Joe will have an extensive photo gallery posted. Took Joe three hours to edit all the photos.

    It was very difficult to watch the practices, mostly because for the morning session, the skill position players were largely at the far ends of the field where credentialed media were not allowed. Without uniform numbers, unless you were on top of the practice, if was difficult to decipher who was who, save for dreadlocks of Davin Joseph and Jeremy Trueblood’s dome and Jeff Faine’s tats.

    For example, Kareem Huggins was there but Joe never saw him do anything. Practices were on two fields and not a square inch wasn’t used.

    The biggest thing that jumped out to Joe was how GMC was coaching up his fellow defensive lineman.

  5. Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    Talib has little need to worry. He will beat the charges with a plea to a lesser one. Tampa does not want to lose him, and will not cut him. The biggest mystery is what the NFL is going to do ?

  6. Papo Says:

    Talib walks I guarantee it, prosecution would have give him a deal already, he walks!

  7. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Thanks Joe, that’s kind of what I figured. I look forward to seeing the photos!

  8. FreemanBomb5 Says:

    Great to hear that even though those horrible rumors started by Rick Stroud haven’t turned Talib into a stranger. Hopefully this proves that he really is dedicated to his team, just got thrown into a horrible situation. Hopefully some of the other guys on the team make sure he actually realizes his importance