How Many Starters?

May 14th, 2014
The only Bucs draftee that you can surely bank on starting Aug. against the Stinking Panthers is WR Mike Evans.

The only Bucs draftee that you can bank on starting Sept. 7 against the Stinking Panthers is WR Mike Evans.

It would be both bad and good if a team started all of its draft picks.

Good in that it would appear on face value the front office did one helluva job cherry-picking players who could start. Really, really bad in that your incumbent starters were losing gigs to third-day draft picks.

It is a no-brainer that Mike Evans, short of an injury, will start. There is no point in discussing that. After that it gets tricky. Austin Seferian-Jenkins may start, but it’s not like Tim Wright is chopped liver. And remember the Bucs sought Brandon Myers for a nice payday. Guys like that generally don’t watch from the sidelines.

For the same reasons ASJ may not start, even more dramatic is the steep hill Charles Sims must climb. The backfield is loaded, crowded. ESPN’s Pat Yasinskas believes the Bucs have but two starters they found in the draft last weekend.

I think the first two draft picks, Mike Evans and Austin Seferian-Jenkins, will be in the starting lineup in September. Evans is a very safe bet to be there because the Bucs have no other real threats to win the starting position opposite Vincent Jackson. Evans is a plug-and-play starter and I think he’s got a very good chance to be productive with opposing defenses also having to deal with Jackson.

I also think Seferian-Jenkins will be an instant starter, even though he’s going to have a little more competition than Evans. The Bucs already had Tim Wright, Tom Crabtree, Brandon Myers and Luke Stocker. All four of those tight ends have some positive qualities, but Seferian-Jenkins has the potential to be the most complete player of the bunch.

Now Joe is going to throw out another possibility of a starter. Offensive tackle Kevin Pamphile out of Purdue. No, he will not unseat Demar Dotson or Anthony Collins. But Bucs general manager Jason Licht did say the team would experiment with Pamphile at guard.

There is no question the Bucs have a need at right guard. If the Bucs do not address that between now and the regular season, then don’t be so shocked if Pamphile finds his way there.

Unlikely for Pamphile to start at right guard? Yes, but not totally out of the question.

21 Responses to “How Many Starters?”

  1. HFXBUC Says:

    I get the sense that ‘starter’ isn’t the right way to look at it. With the exception to the 2 OL dudes, the other picks all have specific match up traits. We have the big trees, a RB who can catch really well out of the backfield or from the slot and the smaller speedster to stretch the field and challenge the ‘big’ CB’s everyone is drafting. I look at the draft and see the offence as a really diverse set of players that let us attack the weakness of a Defense from week to week. Much the same way NE changes their primary offensive approach week to week (Fantasy Football players know what I’m talking about).

  2. Harry Says:

    I read a crazy Yahoo article yesterday that attempted to identify players who were on the cutting block bc of the new draft picks. No surprise, the writer saw that the Bucs are overloaded at TE. Who did he predict would be cut loose? Not Luke “my friends call me ‘IR'” Stocker; no, not Tom Crabtree either. This crazy person said Tim Wright would be cut. Ridiculous.

  3. Patrick McV Says:

    wow picking starts now is like picking draft picks .. let them show their talent in camp and pre season … some how i think others will shine to soon to say really

  4. Patrick McV Says:

    I said no Qb in the draft unless muray late . love the direction of the team are you kidding . We have the land of the giants in the red zone and great backs . Hello

  5. Willy the Purple Helmeted Warror Says:

    JOE WROTE ” Really, really bad in that your incumbent starters were losing gigs to third-day draft picks. ”

    Joe do I read something applicable to one of your favorite themes here?

  6. stanglassman Says:

    Simms will get plenty of snaps, I don’t know if he will qualify as a starter but he will be used much like the Bengals rookie running back last year Giovani Bernard.

  7. terraj35 Says:

    Good article. The million dollar question remains, what will tedford’s offense look like? Drafting a TE in the 2nd round with the depth in place makes you think 2 TE sets will be common, but I dont think Wright will resemble a tight end in the ways hes moved around this season. My guess is brandon myers will be an early down back with ASF being worked in on 3rd downs and red zone situations. My favorite part of this draft was what we leanred about Tedford.

  8. Rrsrq Says:

    I love the height for red zones, but just as excited for first downs “finally”

  9. Bucamania Says:

    Good call on Sims being used like Giovani Bernard. He won’t start in front of Martin but I expect he’ll be a key contributor, catching passes out of the backfield, split out wide, and even carrying the ball.

  10. BucsQcCity Says:

    Evans for sure
    ASJ + Simms in rotation
    Heron might have a shot at SB

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Not considered starting but I think Sims will be there on 3rd downs….Heron on 3 WR sets……maybe.


    Wow so we are resorting to doing mock depth charts now???

  13. Espo Says:

    People, it’s spelled Sims. One M. It’s not a big deal but if he has a long and productive career I’m sure you will still get it wrong, ala “Rhonde.”

    Back on track. I don’t care for the term starter. I care more for contributor. A slot receiver won’t technically start but will get plenty of playing time. Our backup, and maybe 3rd tight end, will play often.

  14. William Says:

    Wow! are we in for dramatic change on the offense.

    I will not be surprise to see the preseason games sold out. Speed is the theme this year. Hopefully we might add ticket sells to the “speed” theme. I’m really done with blackouts. I heard new jumbo screens will be added in a couple of years. That would make me buy tickets more often. What we have now is so outdated.

  15. Macabee Says:

    “Starter” is a term carried forward from the old days of football. Today it simply means the player that is listed in the first position on the depth chart. “Rotation” is a more apt term in today’s NFL. The player that starts (takes the first snap) more frequently depends on the game plan and the first play called. It is today more the recognition bestowed on a player or an acknowledgement that he is the best player at that position on the team. A defensive line player may also play multiple positions, inside or out, DE or OLB. Who starts and where the player plays depends on the play called. Still nice to be recognized as the “starter” on a team.

  16. BamBamBuc Says:

    Actually, “starter” is the group of personnel on the field for the opening offensive and defensive possession of a game. So, if a team comes out in a 4 WR set, the #4 WR is a “starter” for that game. If we run a 3 TE set to open up, our #3 TE is a “starter” for that game. Same if we start in nickel or dime on defense, we could have a #3 or 4 CB as a “starter” for that game.

    So, whether it be “contributor” or “rotation” or whatever, I like to think we have “producers” behind the “starter” that have “roles”. I certainly hope that if ASJ starts, then Tim Wright (and Myers) produce when called upon in 2 and 3 TE sets. I certainly hope when Martin takes a breather on 3rd and 7, that Sims is productive either as a blocker, or outlet receiver to pick up the 1st down. We got 4 potential producers in the draft at skill positions. If one of the OL we drafted gets any starting time this year, I hope he produces well. I am most skeptical of the OL producing than the skill players. But then again, probably wouldn’t take much to out-play Oniel Cousins or Jamon Meredith.

  17. Pete 422 Says:

    It seems to me that Tedford’s offense will be predicated on keeping the defense off balance by using the skill positions in a variety of ways such as Sims out of the backfield, from running from scrimmage and in the slot.

    I also see a lot of double TE formations with ASJ & Time Wright. Have them block and/or get out on a passing route (Crabtree and Myers) can be put in that mix as well). The question is do they want to keep 4 tight ends? I see Stocker going bye bye. Maybe trade Crabtree to Myers? Do teams keep 4 TEs?

    I expect at least one of the OL draft picks to start at Guard. If Nicks can’t go, then maybe both of they can beat out Meredeth.

  18. Mr lucky Says:

    Picking starters from the draft is as common as people picking their nose – it’s just gross and serves no purpose other than to make the picker feel good.

  19. Couch Fan Says:

    Joe, just out of curiousity. Why do you think Pamphile will start over Kareem Edwards at guard?

  20. kh Says:

    Agree couch fan – think its more likely Edwards would start even coming from a small school given his experience at guard and because he was drafted ahead of Pamphile.

  21. BoJim Says:

    William Said:

    “Wow! are we in for dramatic change on the offense.

    I will not be surprise to see the preseason games sold out. Speed is the theme this year.”


    Wasn’t last years Revis Island? 😉