“That’ll Never Change About The Game”

August 2nd, 2011

"We'll get you a new toy next year, Olie."

There are hundreds of cliches around football.

“It all starts up front” is certainly in the top 10 of all time. Joe’s never heard an argument against that one-liner. What’s to argue?

Speaking on WDAE-AM 620 yesterday, Raheem Morris stressed that the old adage has been key to the Bucs’ offseason priorities as part of their master plan.

“We talked about building our team through our lines. And, you know, we got a chance to build our team through the draft on defense. And we had a chance to re-sign some of our free agents that we had out there on offense.  We want to build those guys to protect and rush passers,” Raheem said. “It starts up front. That’ll never change about the game of football. And we certainly believe in that around here.”

With possibly the highest paid offensive line in football, and snatching four defensive linemen over the first two rounds of the 2010 and 2011 draft, the Bucs have invested mightily in the lines.

Hard to go wrong there.

If the D-line can only find a way to climb to the ranks of average in 2011, the Bucs should win a hell of a lot of ball games.

23 Responses to ““That’ll Never Change About The Game””

  1. the_buc_realist Says:

    I think we need to remember the sacrifice that Gruden and Allen made in Drafting heavily on the O-line Davin and Trueblood, Grabbing a high priced free agent such as Faine, and Scout guys like Penn,
    Thats who built the O-line

  2. Freeman4President Says:

    Yeah thanks Gru and Allen for hitting on that 1 first round draft pick in Davin Joseph, but lets not forget over paying an oft injured center, and generally failing with every other draft pick made …. btw I think someone else scouted out Penn…could be wrong but wasn’t that Dom?

  3. blountforce27 Says:

    LMAO @the_buc_realist you obviously have a man crush on gruden. You and thomas 2.2 should go have a threesome

  4. Mauha Deeb Says:

    “With possibly the highest paid offensive line in football….”
    I am not doubting that possibility at all. In fact, I wouldn’t doubt it. But I would love to see the numbers.
    If it is true…..I am unbelievably disappointed. Faine, Penn, Joseph…. None of those names stand out as great yet all three are making a King’s ransom.

    There is sooooo much money between those three and very little production to show for it. I think I’m gonna be sick.

    Why did you have to bring that up, Joe? Why?

    I should probably end this by saying I like all those guys(sans Faine) but there is tons of cash invested in those guys and last year, they all were awful. All three of them. I don’t think many would argue that.
    Perhaps it was the zone-blocking scheme. Perhaps it was just terrible coaching. Heck, in 2007 those guys pushed Earnest Graham into 898 yards/10 TDs rushing and 349 reception yards. Almost all in the span of 8 games. Perhaps it was the scheme. Perhaps it was great coaching. All I know is that since then our OL play has been a joke.

    Maybe this knew OL coach will turn things around(I believe he will) Our DL has been awful too, but at least with them there isn’t a history of failure given the new blood. At least there is some speculative hope for the DL. The OL we have now is basically the same OL that everyone was raving about to be the next big thing until they took a dump on our collective chests the past 3 years.
    I didn’t realize I was upset about this topic until I read those fateful words: “With possibly the highest paid offensive line in football”…. That stings so friggen bad because it is so friggen true.(At least top 5)
    I truly hope they bring it back to 2007 form. If J-Free gets the pocket time Garcia had, WATCH OUT!!!!( and don’t act like he didn’t have tons of pocket time. The guy just loved to break dance before he through the ball)

  5. Matt Says:

    I just wish the three pillars of our OL (Penn, Faine, and Joseph) played up to their contract.

    Penn is paid like a top 5 LT: Plays like a top 10-15.
    Faine signed the largest contract for a center when he came in: Plays like he’s middle of the road.
    Joseph is now roughly the 2nd best paid guard in the league: Has played terribly versus the run.

    I really, really hope some of that was due to coaching. All indications suggest our new OL coach is better and will help play to the strengths of our players.

    It’s vital for that to happen, our success this year will depend on our ability to keep Freeman upright. We’re not going to win another 10 games this year if our line plays as badly as it did last year.

  6. Mauha Deeb Says:

    *through* = threw

  7. Matt Says:

    @Mauha Deeb Wow, we just said almost the same thing at the same time 😉

  8. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Matt lol You said everything I wanted in so less of lines. I feel like an over descriptive putz lol

  9. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Matt hahahaha and we did it again! Are you single? 😉 jk

  10. Capt.Tim Says:

    Really excited about our D-line, especially with Price and Bowers both out there.. Gonna take a year or two, but those guys should be dominant.

    O-line hase depth and Talent. It should be play out to a talented bunch also.

    Good times!

  11. Mauha Deeb Says:

    egchhhh That doesn’t read as funny as that thought it would. I wish there was an “edit” or “remove post button” on this site. That last post isn’t going away anytime soon. uugghhhhh…..

  12. Matt Says:

    @Mauha Deeb Haha, well done 😉

  13. gotbbucs Says:

    mauha deeb, you pretty much said it all there. championship/dynasty teams pretty much all have the same formula, great offensive lines. until this o-line finally realizes that potential this team will always be one step behind the big boys.

  14. Matt Says:

    @gotbbucs Actually, I’m not sure I agree with that at all, at least nowadays.

    Steelers, Patriots, Colts, Packers…are any of those teams known for their dominant offensive lines? The Steelers and Colts in particular have have Ben and Peyton running for their lives the past few years.

    I actually think that an elite QB (which we may have), a great defensive line (which we have the potential to have), and a solid pass defense (which I believe we have) are the keys in today’s game.

  15. m.wesley Says:

    This has got to be a misprint, Joe you are mistaken!Those cheap Glazers arent paying anyone!

  16. BigMacAttack Says:

    Mauha Deeb, Good stuff all the way around.

    Will everyone please not speak of the highest paid Lines in the NFL. We don’t want to change the image of our owners being cheap, and Thommy boy’s head might explode.

  17. McBuc Says:

    How can you say Penn did not play well last year? He faced some of the best DL in football, and pretty much handled them. The back ups seemed to look better last year, but Penn was in there with them. The return to a power game will help them out, that is what they all were either drafted or picked up for. Also, why doo any of you care about how much any of these guys make? As long as they win, I could not care less if they are the lowest or highest paid guys in the league.

  18. the_buc_realist Says:

    We have a young locked up O-line, Who would be ahead of schedule if we did not try to change to a zone-blocking scheme with a Offensive-cord that could not call plays. remember that guy, Coach Jags. Who interviewed that guy anyways???

    As far as a man-crush on Gruden, not so much, but like Mr. Thomas 2.2 i just like to see my team in the playoffs!

  19. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Matt Patriots, Steelers and Colts all had top notch OLs when they won super bowls. All three patriot super bowl teams had stud OLs.
    Greenbay is an anomaly.(and they were only in their second year of a new defensive system(4-3 to 3-4)). I don’t know what happened, but that teamed turned into fire as soon as post season hit.

  20. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @McBuc The “pressures allowed” by Penn are very disturbing. 2nd most pressure in the league from the T spot from PPF and 3rd most pressures from FootballOutsiders.(You know who was #5? the RT spot of the BUcs.) I totally get that he was making up a whole lot of Larsen’s mistakes. Penn literally played LG and LT in every game. That is how bad LG was. Still, it all turned out bad. He will probably do better sans playing two positions at once. That would mean someone at LG needs to step up and step up fast.
    Regardless, our entire OL last year was awful. I mean really really bad. I mean like Joseph and Larson were two the worst guards in the league type of bad. PFF rated him the most overrated and worst guard in the league over the past three years(I totally disagree but the fact people are talking about it is not a good sign)

  21. Matt Says:

    @Joe: So apparently I’ve been banned on one of my computers, because random comments of mine don’t show up based on my IP. So could you either un-ban me or block my e-mail address entirely, becuase typing up a long response and not knowing whether or not it will go through is just frustrating! 😉

  22. jfgobucs Says:

    Well it sure won’t be RUUDs fault any longer…

  23. Matt Says:

    Let’s try this again…

    @Mauha Deeb Hmm, let’s use Football Outsiders as reference:

    2010: GB: 23rd, PIT: 19th
    2009: NO: 2nd, IND: 25th
    2008: PIT: 24th, ARI: 30th
    2007: NYG: 3rd, NE: 1st
    2006: IND: 5th, CHI: 7th
    2005: PIT: 12th, SEA: 6th
    2004: NE: 5th, PHI: 15th
    2003: NE: 22nd, CAR: 12th
    2002: TB: 25th, OAK: 3rd
    2001: NE: 12th, STL: 1st

    10 Year Average:
    Overall: 12.6th
    Winners: 13.3th
    Losers: 11.9th

    So basically they vary wildly by year, with the average coming out to be a few spots above the league average. In the last three years, only New Orleans has had a great line out of any of the Super Bowl participants, the rest have been terrible.

    I’d like to compare these stats to those of QBs and DL, but I’m a bit short on time at the moment. Maybe later 🙂