Lovie Wants To Run, But …

May 12th, 2014

doug martin 0916The Bucs drafted two fifth-round guards this weekend on the heels of signing two starting offensive linemen in free agency who are best known for pass blocking.

Lovie Smith and Jason Licht also snagged a rookie running back, Charles Sims, whose value is in his receiving hands, with the 69th overall pick.

Lovie has said he wants to run the football, pound it with a bellcow back, but that’s a fuzzy image right now with the current offensive line and after seeing the Bucs’ approach to the NFL Draft. The offensive line remains thin. Heaven forbid the Bucs’ depth is tested there in 2014.

If the Bucs and Jeff Tedford are going to play to their strengths, then fans likely are to be treated to a pass-heavy offense.

Joe’s just fine with that. Lovie had eight years of subpar offenses in Chicago, with one solid one in 2006. A change in approach is welcome.

The pick of Sims, though, remains puzzling on a variety of levels.

Does anyone remember — inside or outside One Buc Palace — that Doug Martin caught 49 balls as a rookie? Joe’s got a feeling Martin’s going to be fighting for carries for the first time in his career.

Joe gets that the Bucs are going to gamble on the offensive line this year. Next season, if necessary, Carl Nicks’ massive salary can come off the books with no penalty, and the Bucs can use some of that cash on the O-line, and pick a premium guy in the draft. Lord knows the Bucs won’t be drafting a quarterback next year. They’re all set for the future at QB.

38 Responses to “Lovie Wants To Run, But …”

  1. Warthog Says:

    Joe, he was probably ranked higher on their board than any available ‘need’ player. Probably don’t need to read any more into it than that. Agree that the OL lacks depth but in recent years the Bucs have gotten into trouble reaching in similar situations. Happy to see them just stock up on talent.

    Can’t agree with you since they only drafted one offensive lineman under Dominik, a fifth-rounder. High O-linemen picks are among the lowest risk (fail rate) in the NFL. Lets’ hope they’ve made some great picks and Nicks can contribute.–Joe

  2. Architek Says:

    Sims is by far the most all-around and explosive RB on the roster. He was projected to go earlier and he was there so they pulled the trigger!

    This guy cuts and vision is ridiculous – he can run legit routes and has very good hands. I think this takes the pressure off of injuries plagued issues we had.

    I love this value pick not need!

  3. BucsfaninChina Says:

    Lol love the sarcasm about the QB joe. Gotta agree with you that L&L are already playing it very dangerously when it comes to the O line. Empasis on the pass gamr or run game, you have to have guys on the line to do both.

    One area I was very surprised to see wasnt addressed was at linebacker. With both Casillas and Foster in contract years, you’d think they would want a backup plan in case they do not want to extend either next year. Sure, less emphasis is put on having a premier SAM LB these days, but still…

  4. Warthog Says:

    And RE drafting a QB this year, I expect we will see both McCown and Glennon play at times this year, as L&L try to assess whether QB is something worth chasing going into the 2014/15 offseason and draft.

  5. Oil Derrick Brooks Says:

    “Lord knows the Bucs won’t be drafting a quarterback next year. They’re all set for the future at QB.”

    You don’t come off bitter at all. Try holding your breath, that might work.

    Not a bitter bone in Joe’s body. –Joe

  6. Eric Says:

    Kinda hard to fix everything at once when inheriting a disaster from the Rock.

    You know your offense REALLY sucks when….

    Lovie Smith takes over your team and doesn’t pick a single defensive player in the draft.

  7. Oil Derrick Brooks Says:

    “Not a bitter bone in Joe’s body. –Joe”

    And it shows.

  8. d-money Says:

    “Does anyone remember — inside or outside One Buc Palace — that Doug Martin caught 49 balls as a rookie?”

    Does anyone remember how many times Joe has complained that Martin was injured running a wheel route?

    Yes, and probably all 49 of those balls were not wheel routes. Joe didn’t like Martin in the wheel route because the Bucs used it multiple times after Martin didn’t look good in it initially. How very Benn’d Around. After Joe complained about it, then Martin got hurt on it. Joe never wrote that Martin shouldn’t be catching passes. –joe

  9. Jim Walker Says:

    Martin needs to fight for his carries. It will make him a better back. He is the most talented and proven back, but this pick tells him not to be complacent.

  10. biff barker Says:

    It’s all hazy at this point but my guess is Tedford is going to attack weaknesses rather than go the scripted play, “we didn’t practice that” route. (Which still pisses me off beyond belief)
    You take what the defenses give you.
    Frankly, I don’t see how teams are going to stack the box given the size and type of recievers we have.

  11. Brandon Says:

    Martin looked natural in his rookie season catching the ball, last season he could barely catch a cold. I don’t mind the wheel route, if it worked we probably scored. A RB is far less unlikely to get injured running routes than actually carrying the football.

  12. Eric Says:

    All will be apparent when Sims makes some key plays that help us win games.

    Pick will look real good then.

  13. Architek Says:


  14. biff barker Says:

    We are going to see a lot of three step drops, moving pockets, misdirection and multiple back sets with movement IMO.
    We should be making opposing defenses stay in base and keep running.

  15. mpmalloy Says:

    Lord knows the Bucs won’t be drafting a quarterback next year. They’re all set for the future at QB.

    You’re damn right they are.

  16. BucsFan47 Says:

    I love the hate you have for Mike Glennon lol. Get used to it Joe, HE’S HERE TO STAY! Lovie saw on film what the MGM saw last year, a player that had little support do the best he can. His only receiver was Vincent Jackson, COME ON MAN! Please don’t say he had Tim Wright, he was an UDFA that was a WR in college. He made Tim Wright good, not the other way around. Now with a solid OC, good pass blocking and actually having more than just 1 weapon, Glennon is going to flourish. GO BUCS!!!!

  17. Big Rob Says:

    I think the Bucs lack of O-line acquisitions can be attributed to what you said in your last paragraph. They may just want to see what they got and wait until they can cut Nicks to really upgrade that line. That’s what’s been on my mind after this weekend.

  18. biff barker Says:

    BTW, Glennnon is here until they find somebody better. Ditto McCown.
    It’s the same on 31 other teams.

  19. Dean Says:

    Many of you tend to overlook the fact that the Bucs were pitiful in several areas. DE, WR, TE, DL, QB, OL…just to mention a few. Now look….Strengths are WR, TE. Acceptable, but improved are DE, DL, QB. That still leaves more work to do on OL. But look how far we have come. You can always find another area of need, but take some time to see just how much better we are right now, as compared to last January. Hang in there guys. Rome wasn’t built in a day. There was just too much to correct to be able to fix it all in 6 months. But this sure is a tremendous improvement. How would you like Carolina’s receiving corps?

  20. Lou. Says:

    I see the Sims pick as making sense — not as a RB per se but in the context of the overall passing game. The Bucs had a wideout (Jackson) and added another (Evans). The team has a group of slots and added one (Herron). They have Wright and a group of tight ends and brought in a new, well-rounded stud (Seferian-Jenkins). As a pass catching RB, Sims is a definite upgrade on Brian Leonard and may diversify the attack.

    Also, more generally, The L&L approach to the o-line seems conventional: they want to set the edge (i.e., the tackles) and fill in at guard. Schiano tried the opposite and was not successful, whether due to talent, luck, or scheme. L&L also have some punch in the blocking from the wing receivers — how that plays out, who knows? Remember that Schiano tried to build the defense back-to-front, which several commentators on local radio (like Chris Landry) panned as unrealistic. We shall see how successful this new approach proves.

  21. Warthog Says:

    Joe the point I was making about the Bucs reaching for need wasn’t specifically in regards to the OL, more guys like Dexter Jackson who were panic ‘need’ picks. So just in terms of overall draft philosophy, I’m happy with the pick.

  22. Sweets Willie Says:

    Someone didn’t read the mini camp reports. JMac has a Usain Bolt lead! JMac was accurate and throwing before receivers came out of their break. MG8 held the ball too long, never trusted play or receiver. This is why he was sacked so much. Reporters all wrote obvious #1 is JMac.

  23. phattitudes Says:

    Joe, Joe, Joe. You did your best to show the Bucs front office your stuff and it didn’t work out. You’re feeling hurt and lashing out. You’ll parse every Bucs comment and catch them in their lies. You’ll show them Joe. You ordered a whole new box of pins to stick in their doll. Your not going to let them get away with it. Take a pill Joe. Relax. Search for the high road. Go back to being a FAN.

    Joe’s fandom includes focusing on how the Bucs will win the Super Bowl without a great quarterback.–Joe

  24. Jeagan1999 Says:

    I was a little taken aback by the Simms pick too…but when you think it through, it’s not so far fetched. Martin is coming off an injury. Mike James is coming of an even more serious injury. Bobby Rainey showed some talent last year…but I don’t think he is a “bellow”. All the scouts says that Simms reminds them of Matt Forte of the Bears….nice runner, very good receiver. So you bring him in as insurance against Mike James, and in the hopes that he can spell Doug Martin a little here and there so we don’t wear him down over the course of a full season and the playoffs (hopefully!). I think we were all hoping the Bucs would invest a little more in the O-line, but there are still some choices out there (Davin is still unsigned, Incognito, possible trades, and a whole second round of Free Agency once camps begin). I think Simms is just another offensive weapon brought in to make the Bucs a more explosive team and I look forward to seeing what he…and Evans and Sefarian-Jenkins, and all the other new players can do on the field!

  25. BBFFC Says:

    Biff barker is right!

    Lots of weapons, quick throws. We now can make the defense cover every square inch of the field!

  26. Tackleblockwin Says:

    Why is selecting Sims such a mystery? Lol. Two of our RBs are coming off injury. Yes, we need help at G, but I think we will look to veterans via FA releases later to bolster the Oline depth.

  27. TAC Says:

    Doug Martin dropped off a bit last year IMO. Could have been the Oline problem though, so will see this year. He is a great RB once he decides to hit the trenches, and go downhill, but tried to juke around to much last year after hitting it.

    I hope he gets some of the load off his back, I suppose he needs to hit a stride within the game, so will still need the majority of carries. But splitting time will help the bucs, especially with Sims receiving ability.

    No weakness in RB’s for sure.

  28. Rob Says:

    “Does anyone remember — inside or outside One Buc Palace — that Doug Martin caught 49 balls as a rookie? Joe’s got a feeling Martin’s going to be fighting for carries for the first time in his career.”

    Good. Running Martin 30 times a game isn’t good for ANYONE.

  29. Buc1987 Says:

    “Lord knows the Bucs won’t be drafting a quarterback next year. They’re all set for the future at QB.”

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha Joe you’re a funny one. ha ha ha ha ha ha

  30. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:


    Mike Glennon is so good that Lovie replaced him as starter with an 11 year career backup. Suuuure, he’s the QB of the future…but only because Lovie knows McCown will get injured and he’ll have to play Glennon.

  31. bigpoppabuc Says:

    Lol…. Joe is so pissed that he’s wrong about Glennon. Get over it dude. The kid is better than ANY of us thought he would be and I only see him getting better. He’s got elite QB qualities. He’s going to be a self made man and he WILL win in this league.

    Joe is not pissed at all. And Joe doesn’t believe he’s wrong about Glennon. Glennon is a strong backup in the league that is thin at that position. –Joe

    the bucs are being cautious because he’s young, but they (and apparently others around the league) see just how good he can be. And he’s going to test Lovie’s stance come training camp. McCown is no threat to Glennon, just another guy he’s got to beat out on the field. I just hope this regim is able to make the right decision in the preseason instead of the middle of the season.

  32. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    And Sims is NOWHERE near as good as Doug Martin.

    I don’t care if he was projected by supposed “experts” to go sooner. TEAMS set his value by passing on him until he was actually taken.

    Or are we now going to say a bunch of media wannabe’s know more than actually NFL professionals?

  33. Kramden Says:

    “Joe’s fandom includes focusing on how the Bucs will win the Super Bowl without a great quarterback.–Joe”

    QB is a piece that looks to be improved at this point to attain Super Bowl heights. But I cannot fault the Bucs for not drafting a QB if they didn’t believe one of this year’s offerings were legit. Draft was very productive in my estimation for team building. Joe, you can’t fill all holes in one off-season. And this caution used in not drafting/forcing a QB in 2014 allows them to get a good look at MG8 with a supporting cast intact vs. throwing him out prematurely. IMO…

  34. VinceNY Says:

    @Buccaneer Bonzai

    Players slip every single year, and not necessarily because of a lack of NFL regard or talent. There is such thing as a value pick. Just because Sims went in the third doesn’t mean his talent couldn’t have warranted an earlier pick.

  35. tiny tim Says:

    I really do not understand why any educated football fan would be puzzled that the bucs took a running back in the third round. Am I missing something? Who is Mike James? A sixth round draft pick that had 1 1/2 good games. Who is Bobby Rainey? A player who has been cut by two teams who played descently in a tough situation. But lets not confuse these two guys for Barry Sanders and Emmit Smith. Therefore, collecting talent in the draft regardless of position was a good thing for the bucs. James may not even make the team. If he doesn’t, that means the bucs are better in the backfield than before period.

  36. Vico Says:

    Let’s lose 12 again and get Mariota. Wait, no, we might end up with his best WR this year.

  37. William Says:

    Smith is an intriguing choice. I like how our coaching staff thinks and acts.
    Smith & Glennon have a bright future with us.

    I am not bitter that Connor Shaw went to Cleveland. I actually have faith in Tedford and Arroyo to help Glennon develop to a starter within the next two years. I saw things I didn’t like last year but i also saw some bright spots for a rookie. Having McCown as a mentor to Glennon is another bright spot for glennon’s future. I’m not a QB coach so I don’t go into tantrums. But you know is a free country.

    I support our coaches decisions in 2014.

    Connor Shaw and Manziel went to Cleveland.

  38. William Says:

    sims not smith. although Lovie will too.