Lorig Earns Schiano’s Nod

November 6th, 2012

As much as Greg Schiano talked all offseason about how he wanted to run the football, it surprised Joe a bit that the Bucs seemed content to hand the starting fullback gig to Erik Lorig, a converted defensive end with limited experience in the backfield.

Then as it became clear that the Bucs’ new offense would actually use the fullback more than most, Joe had his fingers and toes crossed that Lorig could deliver.

To date, Joe thinks Lorig has been better than expected. His blocking appears to have improved — he threw key blocks on three of four Doug Martin touchdown runs Sunday — and Lorig has been sure-handed and quick out of the backfield all season.

Last night, the leader of the New Schiano Order took to the WDAE-AM 620 airwaves and enthusiastically heaped hefty praise on his fullback.

“Erik Lorig has done a great job. I mean, being a lead fullback, catching the ball when we throw it to him,” Schiano said.

Joe’s got a lot of faith in Lorig’s ability to improve. Former Bucs defensive end Steve White documented one of Lorig’s blocking shortcomings weeks ago, which Joe has kept an eye on since. Joe has seen improvement. Plus, Joe got to chat with former Bucs FB/RB Earnest Graham about Lorig, and Graham asssured Joe that Lorig is an extraordinary athlete and has the work ethic to develop into a top fullback.

If Lorig keeps catching balls and lead-blocking Martin to a great season, he could end up being the first Mark Dominik draft pick to start a Pro Bowl, aka eat pineapple.

14 Responses to “Lorig Earns Schiano’s Nod”

  1. Tylund Says:

    He could absolutely be in the pro bowl

  2. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    The proof is IN the pudding, and the sudden emergence of the Tampa Running Game is a team effort. Both Lorig, and our O line are also responsible for the success Martin is having.
    You were right Joe, it was coaching! Mark Dominik has assembled plenty of Talent

  3. Snook Says:

    A fullback from the Buccaneers in the Popularity Bowl? Not happening.

    We’re lucky the masses know who Doug Martin is.

  4. Stranger Says:

    The Viking has been awesome.

  5. Brandon Says:

    Lorig is going to have tons of competition on being the first Buccaneer draftee to start a pro bowl.

    Offensively, Doug Martin might not be the leading vote getter, but he is more likely to ATTEND the pro bowl over Peterson and Lynch, so he has a shot too.

    Mike Williams has a ton of competition, but he is excellent in what he does. Josh Freeman has a shot as well, considering the likelihood that the other QBs (Brees, Rodgers, Ryan Manning) could bow out.

    Defensively, Mason Foster and Lavonte David are playing at pro bowl levels.

    McCoy has a shot if and only if he can add statistics to his disruptiveness.

    Mark Barron has been a huge addition and there aren’t many great safeties in the NFC. Considering the Bucs D is #1 against the run, this bodes well for Buc defenders.

  6. Travis Says:

    Relax on the pineapple references Joe… The first time it was clever, now its just getting annoying, its almost like your trying to coin the phrase…

  7. Luther Says:

    Count me as one of those that had doubts about Lorig. The guy has proven me wrong and that makes be a very happy fan.

  8. @CAeric Says:

    Pineapple express…..Barron, Barber, David, Foster, McCoy…….coin it Joe…..relax Travis

  9. RIs_Buc Says:

    Name a better Full time FB. Except for the guy in Houston it’s not even close. The guy is playing lights out.

  10. st augustine Says:

    this picture reminds me of warrick dunn and mike alstott =)

  11. Sneedy16 Says:

    @st augustine

    Yes it does, too bad Lorig isn’t a power back he would make a great replacement for Blount on goal line.

  12. Mike J Says:

    Luther , me too.Lorig has responded to the new regime’s coaching–Earnest Byner?? Starting to remind me of The Moose in Big D a while back.

  13. Oahubuc Says:

    Here’s a Hawai’ian vote in favor of the pineapple thing (even though we don’t really grow it here anymore)- love it, especially in reference to Lorig- one of my favorite Bucs- hanging out here and eating it. A couple of sources cited Martin’s lopsided stats with and without a lead blocker – read: Erik Lorig.

  14. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    It truly is amazing to me how many guys we have playing at a Pro Bowl level. We all know most won’t get in because they aren’t household names, but just playing at that level is good enough for me. You could make a case for all of our skill position players on offense, and a pretty good one at that (I don’t really consider TE a skill position). I thought Connor Barth was a lock, but he looks like he needs wider goal posts lately. I don’t know if it should be attributed to coaching, the off season, experience, or the scheme, but the improvement is extremely impressive.