Should A “Top-5” O-Line Make The Playoffs?

July 8th, 2013

What do the Ravens, Patriots, Broncos, Niners and Buccaneers have in common?

They’ve all got a “Top-5” offensive line, per a recent NFL Network breakdown by former All-Pro center Matt Birk. (You can catch the video here.) Another former offensive lineman, Brian Baldinger, doesn’t argue with the Bucs’ ranking at No. 5, but he wants to throw the Seahawks’ O-line into the greatness mix.

Hmmm, look at the caliber of the teams not from Tampa. They’re all powerhouses. Four out of five of them won a playoff game in January.

This makes Joe wonder whether a top-5 offensive line should put the Bucs in the playoffs, especially considering the skill position weapons Josh Freeman has at his disposal.

This is yet another example of what should make this Bucs season so engaging and exciting. The Bucs are absolutely loaded with talent and have, as of now, no excuses.

39 Responses to “Should A “Top-5” O-Line Make The Playoffs?”

  1. tampabaybucfan Says:

    Our O-line is certainly good enough to provide running lanes and protect the QB no matter what rank they are.
    Our problem last year was our pass defense and at QB.
    It is unargueable that Freeman’s inconsistancy was a problem
    The only other area of concern is gameday coaching. That could have lost 2 or 3 games.
    Hopefuilly all of those problems have been solved.
    I’m with Joe…..the difficulty of the NFC will make it harder for the Bucs to make the playoffs.
    I’m looking for at least 10-6 and will be satisfied with not making the playoffs if that record isn’t good enough.

  2. 1jwbucs Says:

    I am over all the discussion, speculation and prognosticating…. Lets get on with the Pro Football Season!

  3. SteveK Says:

    The O-Line is good enoug. Is our QB?

  4. Buc1987 Says:

    I’m looking for Russell Wilson to have a sophmore slump. Much like Cam did. I’m also looking for the Saints to drop off. Don’t expect much from Dallas. I don’t see the Vikings repeating a playoff berth either. So to me the NFC is not as deep as Joe or others might think. We’ll see.
    Do you fans remember all the buzz around the NFL after the 2010 season about Freeman? Well Wilson has been all the talk on NFL network this offseason too. So was Cam last summer. Again we’ll see just how deep this NFC really is. I consider our team to be part of that deep NFC as well. Call it homerism if you like. I don’t care.

  5. koda Says:

    I really think we are going to make a leap in the same regards as the Niners made a few years ago. Freeman and Alex Smith are very similar in regards to consistency before Harbaugh got a hold of him. They had a great def, we have a top ten offense from last year with Freeman throwing 17 ints. We now have the same Hawk who patrolled the secondary for the niners. Revis is better than any Cb they have. Lbers while we don’t have the household names of Willis,and Bowman. I do believe David is a Stud and Foster is good and can become even better. Are d line also doesn’t have the big names minus McCoy. But you have to remember Bowers was projected to be top 5 pick and a lot of people had him going number 1, Clayborn is a Bull. Now on Offense we have a much better Offense then tht SF team had. Only player I would say 49s would have the advantage over us would be TE!Jackson, and Williams are better than any Wideouts 49ers had or have now. O line when healthy is a wash and rb I would take martin over gore because gore has tons of miles and is 30 I think or older. 11-5 I think and we are a dark horse for a long Playoff Run

  6. robert Says:

    I hear ALL the talk about how friggen great our O line is……..

    outside of Penn, I have yet to see the type of consistency and dominance that would warrant that talk about our O line.

    and I know our 2 gaurds got hurt last year, but I did not see them pancacking anyone or blowing holes open (like they talk about) when they were in the game.

    The O line needs a reality check. The field is what matters, not their contract or draft status.

  7. Buc'n Junkie Says:

    The one thing all those other teams have in common are either great defenses or they are in weak divisions. Our defense has to step up because we are definitely not in a weak division. That’s our only chance of making the playoffs with this mammoth offensive line.

  8. Buc1987 Says:

    @robert…you fail to mention Nicks?

  9. Tampa2 Says:

    Weak division? That’s a weak assessment. Denver, and Bmore were/are just plain better than everyone. Doesn’t freaking matter what division they’re in. Also, Baltimore’s D was not anything close to being great. You know what they had? Great QB play! Freeman should try it sometime.

  10. Sneedy16 Says:


    “and I know our 2 gaurds got hurt last year, but I did not see them pancacking anyone or blowing holes open (like they talk about) when they were in the game.”

    For one thing Joseph was hurt in the 1st or second preseason game and Carl Nick played on a bum foot. To say that they didn’t blow anyone up you will have to look at the tape from 2011. Carl Nicks was a man amongst boys in New Orleans. Most of the runs were off Carl Nicks side before he left.

    Reality check? hmmm. Top rushing team with backups… OK.

  11. Buc'n Junkie Says:

    ^^^^ You’re wrong, when you play 6 games against the Bills, Dolphins and Jets, that’s practically six games in your win column. Or how about 6 games against Raiders, Chiefs, and Chargers.

  12. the_buc_realist Says:

    Even though the o-line is top 5, it is very difficult when the Jfro-6pak is beyond the 20’s. As i have stated many times, The rest of the team will have to drag the Dline and JFro-6Pak to the playoffs.

  13. Tampa2 Says:

    Lowest common denominator argument. Good teams destroy lesser opponents. THATS WHAT GOOD TEAMS DO! Bucs play in a tougher division. Well whoop di do. If they play Denver or BMORE 10 times they lose 8 of those games. Fans keep talking about parity and any given Sunday, but when it comes to justifying another teams great record you can’t asterisk it by saying “errr uhh, yeah well…they had a weak schedule!” Herp derp..You can’t have it both ways..

    If for example, the Patriots were average then they would not be beating up on the Dolphins etc every year. Trying to minimize the fact that they are just good is idiotic. I swear, football fans are the least objective group of people there is.

  14. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    “Should A “Top-5″ O-Line Make The Playoffs?”

    As long as they are not playing on the same team as the second worst pass defense of all time, then yes!

  15. robert Says:

    @ buc realist…

    I’ve been saying jfro 6 pack Jackson was outside of my top 20QB’s……..and gotten pummeled for it. LOL

    funny I am ALWAYS right!

    this O line better stop reading the headlines, cause they aint that good.

  16. Biff Barker Says:

    Losing Nicks last season was downright painful. Dudes a manbeast. It probably was a greater loss than Joseph because of the killer attitude. Nicks would talk of seeing the pain in his opponents eyes.
    The talent is there but the mauling mindset is exactly what we need to make the playoffs.

  17. Macabee Says:

    Having a Top 5 O-Line helps, but is no guarantee to go to the playoffs. Depending on whose Top 5 list you’re using, RotoWorld’s 2012 list only had 3 teams make the playoffs. The Giants and the Chiefs did not make it.

    Rotoworld’s 2013 list is the same as Matt Birk’s list except for the Ravens at # 4. They again have the Giants at #4. Both have the Bucs at #5. My opinion, given the drastic changes in their offense, I don’t think the Ravens or the Patriots are a lock for this year. The Giants are not favored to win the NFC-East either. The Bucs can do it this year with a little luck and no injuries. #fingers crossed!

  18. RCH Says:

    “Should A “Top-5″ O-Line Make The Playoffs?”


  19. lightningbuc Says:

    “Should A “Top-5″ O-Line Make The Playoffs?”

    As long as they are not playing on the same team that has Josh Freeman as its starting QB.

  20. Buc1987 Says:

    When the Bucs win the South…remember where you heard it first.

  21. Sneedy16 Says:

    My mistake it was 3rd preseason game.

  22. Buc'n Junkie Says:


    For sake of argument,

    Won PATRIOTS 52 BILLS 28
    Won JETS 26 PATRIOTS 29
    Won BILLS 31 PATRIOTS 37
    Won PATRIOTS 49 JETS 19

    6 – 0 against own division 6 – 4 out of division


    6 – 0 against own division 7 – 3 out of division

    The Bucs have to at least go .500 in our own division if they want a shot at the playoffs.

  23. Buc1987 Says:

    @Tampa2…ahhh I hate to bring up that other F word, but Freeman is in the same boat as Flacco was prior to the 2012 season. Course Flacco had playoff appearances, and not by his own doing either. Many people were questioning his ability too. I don’t think Freeman is going to entirely straighten his game out, but I do think he will be improved enough.

  24. loung Says:

    you tell me … nfc south def.. stop 22 running ????

  25. Couch Fan Says:

    What do the Ravens, Patriots, Broncos, Niners and Buccaneers have in common?


    Yes they all have good O-Lines. They all also have great QBs or QBs who stepped up when there team needed them most… Well except the Bucs.

  26. Buc'n Junkie Says:


    That goes without saying …. and the beat goes on……..

  27. Couch Fan Says:

    @Buc’n Junkie

    Lol, hey if the Freeman humpers can insert there 2 cents about the defense in every article, I can do the same!

  28. robert Says:

    we don’t have a top 5 O line!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    just like we don’t have a top 5 QB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    they both have the *cough* “potential” to be top 5………..

    but until I see it on the field I will continue to see things as they are. mediocre.

  29. robert Says:

    get em couch…

    jfro, 6 pack jackson wanna be is on his way out!!!

  30. Couch Fan Says:

    The Bucs have to at least go .500 in our own division if they want a shot at the playoffs.


    I agree though i would say with our schedule the way it is, we need to come out of our division with 4 wins. (hopefully beating carolina twice then splitting with NO and Atl.

  31. Buc'n Junkie Says:


    You’re right .500 may not be enough. We need 4 wins in our division to have a chance. Of course we have to go more than .500 out of our division too.

  32. Buc1987 Says:

    Why don’t we ask Doug Martin how good the O-line is?

  33. Tampa2 Says:

    Wow, you copy and pasted last years schedule Buc Junkie. How impressive.. You play what’s on your schedule. No excuses. Stop trying to spin shit. The Bucs have what is considered an “easier” schedule this year based on winning %. Are you going to apologize if the Bucs go 12-4? No, of course not so stop being a gd hypocrite. And ONCE AGAIN – if these teams weren’t any good then they would not be beating up on their division. You do understand this right? You act wins are a given. Winning on Sundays is hard, and you shouldn’t take winning for granted. Teams that win consistently are kinda good and stuff.

    Buc1987 – Fair point. I don’t disagree per se but a key word you included in your statement is PRIOR to 2012. It’s not 2012 and prior anymore. A lot has happened since then, such as Flacco having one of the greatest statistical playoff runs ever. Flacco/Freeman comparisons are over and frankly is insulting to Flacco at this point. Flacco upped his game. Anyone can qualify it however they want but he did and time for number 5 to do the same. I’d rather throw to Vjax and Williams all day. No excuses.

  34. Buc1987 Says:

    Yes Tampa2 your right. What I’m saying is this could be Freeman’s year but like Ravens fans were prior to last season, Buc fans are this year. Ready to throw Freeman under the bus. I’m not there yet. Because I’ve seen Dilfer, King, Erickson, and Vinny. I don’t place Freeman in that group.
    Again we’ll see.

  35. Jeff Says:

    REALY a top 5 offensive line, they must think more highly of Ted Larsen and Jamon Meredith. Not to rain on any ones parade but what should have been one of the top o-lines last year was decimated by 2 season ending injuries. Bob Bostad did a GREAT job preparing these guys to play but come on add Demar Dotson and that is 2 undrafted players that are starting at the end of the season, Meredith was draft and cut by the Bills… Who knew, I had to look it up. Freeman’s late season struggles and the teams fall from playoff contention coincide with their inability to run the ball and then compounded with the inability to protect Freeman. I won’t say it was all the collective offense’s faulth, the defense couldn’t stop anyone through the air but… My point is, this top o-line has never played one regular season game together so lets have some RESERVED OPTIMISM. I’ll be at the opener, hopefully we won’t make Sanchez look like Foyles, probably the worst game of the season. Bostad is the man, Oden can’t be worse than Cooper, I still don’t like Sheridan but… GO BUCS!!!!

  36. Buc1987 Says:

    That’s cool Jeff so you live in N.Y. then or are you traveling to the Jets game?

  37. Piratic Says:

    I wish that our O-line could use lightningbuc, Free’s A Boob, the_buc_realist, robert, loung, et al., as blocking dummies, because that’s all they’re good for–other than whining like little girls.

    ESPECIALLY loung. That cat is worthless.

  38. scubog Says:

    Thank you Piratic for posting the most intelligent and factual post I’ve read in a while. Isn’t it funny how they will cite anything they can find to support their total disdain for our QB. Yet when something promising about our talented O-line is published it is met with the same regurgitation of doubt. Fans?

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