Bucs Need Strong Defensive Front

July 11th, 2011

Hey, fans are allowed to dream, right? Of course. And that’s the premise Dave Scheiber of FoxSportsFlorida.com took recently.

Scheiber decided to put fingertips to keyboard and pound out six things the Bucs must accomplish for the Pewter Pirates to advance to their second Super Bowl. Of the six is a dominant defensive line.

A disruptive D-line: The Bucs were among the league’s worst in stopping the run last season and finished second-to-last in sacks, but they have the makings of a much-improved defensive line heading into the season. Last year’s No. 1 draft pick, tackle Gerald McCoy out of Oklahoma, suffered an arm injury and didn’t get a chance to develop into the impact player the team expects he’ll be now that he’s healthy. And in the recent draft, general manager Mark Dominik tapped a pair of promising linemen: defensive ends Adrian Clayborn of Iowa in the first round and Da’Quan Bowers out of Clemson in the second. Second-year tackle Brian Price remains a question mark, trying to return from a rare surgery that repaired a torn hamstring and broken pelvis. But the defensive line features a promising blend of youth and experience (such as Roy Miller, Stylez White and Tim Crowder). And the unit, in spite of a poor turnout at Freeman’s minicamp, is positioned to turn up the heat on quarterbacks and rushers in 2011. For the Bucs to go far, it’s a must.

Just a hunch for Joe, but sans Miller, Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik is going to go all youth up front when the season begins (if it begins).

But Scheiber is correct: Dominik has spent much cash and collateral on the defensive line and it’s about time it starts to show results. Joe firmly believes Keith Millard will do wonders with Gerald McCoy and he certainly won’t hurt the rest.

It’s not farfetched to think the Bucs could be in a Super Bowl (no, Joe’s not saying the Bucs will be in the Super Bowl). Josh Freeman likes to talk about how the Bucs lost a playoff tiebreaker to the Packers. And it was the cheddar cheese and green that won the Super Bowl.

For the Bucs to accomplish such a feat, the defensive line has to dramatically improve.

10 Responses to “Bucs Need Strong Defensive Front”

  1. Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    The addition of the 2 defensive ends will make us much better. This will take the double teams off McCoy he saw nearly every down last year.
    We were a good team last year, and we got better this year. Of course, our schedule got tougher too.

  2. the_buc_realist Says:

    We had the one of the easist schedules in the league, We have rookies on the d-line. they will tell us a couple more years till we build a lasting contender. The whole d-line needs the emblem of crossed crutches. i see us finishing 3rd in the division, again!

  3. Garv Says:

    I thought there was a solid turnout for Freeman’s mini camp. That only injured players, players recovering from surgeries and the like, did not participate.
    Other than Ronde, Caddy and Greg White.

    LOVE the young and exciting new DL our team has. For this season and many to come.

  4. Meh Says:

    Price is a HUGE concern. I seriously doubt he’s ready to play early this season (assuming the regular season starts on time).

  5. McBuc Says:

    I find it funny that the Bucs always get the “easy schedule” explanation of why they played well last year, but the Saints and Falcons don’t…They play the same schedule with the exception of two games. The year before when the Bucs had a hard schedule, not one gave them a pass for having a hard schedule. It is a moot point, all NFL teams can beat each other at any given time.

  6. McBuc Says:

    Also the SOS does not show the entire picture. Take the Panthers for instance. Car has the number 1 spot this year playing the same schedule as TB, NO, and ATL, which are all in the mid to high teens for the 2011 season. This is because those three teams had great years last year as did the two teams they play. Using the logic of those that dismiss the Bucs due to SOS, the teams that are driving up Car SOS ranking all played easy teams…so it does not matter. It is a flawed way to judge in the NFL. Also, should we strip GB’s SB win, since they had an easy schedule as well?

  7. Architek Says:

    I think the Detroit DLine gets a lot of pub (As it should) but this young Tampa line should earn some respect and make some noise this year. Even without Price because of Miller and Okam getting a full camp.. if the coaching turns out to live up to the hype the Dline will once again set the pace.

  8. TrueBlue Says:

    Joe, any word on what’s happening at 1 Buc Place? An article on the what the coaches are doing to prepare during this lockout would be interesting. An interview maybe?

  9. Joe Says:


    Joe, any word on what’s happening at 1 Buc Place? An article on the what the coaches are doing to prepare during this lockout would be interesting. An interview maybe?

    Not a lot they can do outside of what they have been doing since the end of the season: watch college and NFL tape. That hasn’t changed.

    They likely have pink eye from watching so much tape.

  10. Espo Says:

    I want Scheiber’s job: stating the obvious.