Raheem’s “Christmas Gift” Debuts

August 26th, 2011

"Merry Christmas, Free. We hope."

One thing that frustrated Joe about the Bucs’ offseason was the scant, if any, upgrades to the Bucs offense.

More juice at wide receiver? No.

Scat back type? No.

Yes, the Bucs were roughly the 10th best offense in the NFL over the second half of the 2010 season, but it seemed that with legend-in-waiting Josh Freeman at quarterback, the Bucs might have wanted to added more weapons around him.

This seemed especially important to Joe with Arrelious Benn coming off major surgery and the Bucs waving goodbye to their productive third-down back, fan favorite Cadillac Williams.

Essentially, to get more dangerous, the Bucs drafted running back Allen Bradford — a longshot to wear a helmet on Sundays — and grabbed rookie tight end Luke Stocker with their late fourth-round pick. On paper, they’re hardly impact moves. But Stocker makes his debut Saturday following a training camp injury, and Joe can’t wait to see him, especially after Raheem Morris raved about the young man at his Friday news conference.

“Stocker’s really been fun to watch because he’s kind of that new present you get at the end of the day on Christmas. We finally got a chance to gift wrap him last week and this week,” Raheem said. “And looking at him go out there, he’s a big blocker type but he also has some foot quickness. We’re starting to see the stuff we fell in love with at the Senior Bowl come alive for him. …  I’m really fired up about that young man.”

Joe’s been naughty, but he’s ready for a Merry Christmas. And surely Freeman earned something from Santa. Hopefully, Stocker is another late-round gem from Mark Dominik.

9 Responses to “Raheem’s “Christmas Gift” Debuts”

  1. BennySaxon Says:

    I think it’s especially exciting because young Freeman spreads the ball to so many peeps!

  2. SteveK Says:

    On drafting Stocker, “grabbed rookie tight end Luke Stocker with their late fourth-round pick.”

    Didn’t we trade up with Philly to get him?

  3. jvato24 Says:

    Stocker cost the Bucs TWO 4th Round Picks. He needs show his value because he had some expense.

  4. jvato24 Says:

    Did anyone catch the stat in the 1st pre-season game that Freeman had something like 13 receivers with over 10 receptions last year and it was an NFL record.

    Any chance you can find that info Joe ??

  5. Meh Says:

    Would have liked some serious offensive line upgrades more than a playmaker.

  6. Architek Says:

    Not adding more speed on offense is going to hurt us when teams press all the time. I dont even want to talk about the offensive line, imo, it’s offensive. Sorry.

  7. Joel Says:

    The thing that people forget when talking about the Bucs offseason upgrades is that our main offensive weapons still have a ton of upside. It’s not like this is the Steelers or the Packers, where everyone has produced consistently for a few years. Freeman, Williams, Blount, and Benn all have room to improve and grow together. I think we already have the “playmakers” everyone is asking for, they just need to have the time to develop into those roles.

  8. So. Ill. Bucs Says:

    @jvato: I think he also had a record for amount of receivers with a catch, 21 or so.

    One of the upsides to Luke Stocker is that he is an excellent blocker. While it is yet to be proven in an NFL game, if he pans out as both a receiving threat and a powerful blocker we will have gotten an extra pick’s worth out of him.

  9. Dan Says:

    someone today somewhere was speculating about us trading for chris johnson… talk about

    ‘scat back type’ right?