Being “Bold” On Will Gholston

June 15th, 2014
william gholston 0204

Can Will Gholston out-perform Adrian Clayborn?

Joe makes no apologies that he has been rooting for defensive lineman Will Gholston since the Bucs selected him in the fourth round last year. Gholston looked every bit the part of a future defensive end stud.

Questionable discipline, in part, pushed him down to Day 3 of the draft out of Michigan State. But Gholston had talent and one reason Joe became a fan of Gholston was his hellish background.

Gholston easily could have taken the wrong turn in life, but instead chose the hard way and look where he is now. Those who meet Gholston could never guess he came from a nightmarish upbringing. At one time, he was homeless.

How could you not root for a guy like that?

Gholston started off as a bubble player but before the end of his rookie season, he was starting. Gholston worked his tail off and he’s shown more promise that Da’Quan Bowers. Joe believes there is a high ceiling for Gholston, as well.

It seems Scott Smith believes the same. The multimedia maven of addressed the likelihood Gholston would out-produce both Adrian Clayborn and Bowers this fall.

Again, I agree on the classification. This one is bold simply because it’s predicting relatively big things for a second-year player with two career starts and two career sacks. Gholston did indeed come on strong at the end of his rookie season, but he still has to prove himself to a new coaching staff, as do Clayborn and Bowers. Predicting Gholston to out-sack Bowers isn’t particularly bold, in that Bowers has had longer that Gholston to try to establish himself and hasn’t really done so yet. Predicting Gholston to outdo Clayborn is bold, however. Clayborn had 7.5 sacks as a rookie, missed most of 2012 due to injury and then came back with 6.0 sacks last year. Those six sacks came during a season in which he didn’t always get rave reviews. That is, that wasn’t the best Clayborn has to offer, probably, and he still got six. Consider that a baseline, and now you’re probably saying that Gholston will have to get six or seven of his own for that prediction to come true. That’s pretty bold.

This is obviously a key year for Clayborn. He was coming off an ugly knee surgery the past season, and it is not uncommon for big guys who work in the trenches to need two years to fully recover from that.

The Bucs, however, are in a show-me mode. Notice the Bucs declined to pick up the fifth year option on Clayborn? That is a not-so-subtle message.

As Joe has stated previously, there’s little hope Bowers will realize his potential. Clearly, he’s running out of time to do so with the Bucs if his position coach is calling him out in June.

25 Responses to “Being “Bold” On Will Gholston”

  1. bigpoppabuc Says:

    I’m confident in our D line rotation. The addition of Johnson and the development of guys like Gholston and Means puts even MORE fire under the arses of AC and Bowers. I also like the rookie from S.C.

    the cream will rise and the system will produce pressure.

  2. finishers Says:

    I think Gholston is going to kick ass this year!!! he’s a beast!

  3. OB Says:


    I am with you on this and with the mentoring he is receiving, I believe the only ones that should worry about our defense is the other teams offense.

  4. Jim Walker Says:

    Clayborn was abysmal last year. I hope Gholston has heart, cause Clayborn plays with no fire.

  5. Bobby Says:

    I think being able to rotate in Clayborn and Gholston is going to be awesome. Both of those guys can bring the heat if the defensive scheme stays away from the stupid stunts we ran last year. I think Lovie is just going to let these guys hunt. Should be fun to watch.

  6. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    If it was not for the draft status Clayborn would have been replaced. Really hope that Gholston starts, We have seen what Clayborn can do, and its nothing special. Worst case scenario is that they let Clayborn start this year and they just let his contract expire. Then Lovie and Licht will find a true pass rusher if Gholston can not cut the mustard.

    Clayborn is solid
    ” and solid will get you 4-12″ says Lovie.

  7. biff barker Says:

    Clayborn plays with fire in the belly. He has always been a high effort guy. Last year he was coming off an injury and in a dismal scheme.
    He can still contribute.

  8. SteveK Says:

    William Gholston is an example of Schiano’s talent identifying talent. Next to improve: Mike Glennon and Johnthan Banks.

  9. SteveK Says:

    Schiano’s talent identifying skills*

  10. Netwalker Says:

    I think you guys are being unfair to Bowers and Clayborn, especially Clayborn. These guys were stuck most of the last year wasting time and energy on stunts that gave quarter backs too much time and sapped their enthusiasm. The complaints were well known throughout the season. I’m interested in what will happen once they’re turned loose in a system that utilizes their inherent skills.

    Bowers being out of shape is another concern. Can’t give him a pass on that. Let’s see how he does in training camp, whether he takes a vacation between now and then or gets in shape. Then lets see how the whole unit plays in preseason. It’s only then that we’ll know what we have.

  11. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    If Available- Trade for LDE-Derrick Morgan (Titans)

    Source: Nashville Tennessean

    A base 4-3 defensive end ever since high school, Morgan has never played in a 3-4. “Now that I have been in the defense a couple of months, I love it. It may be a blessing,” Morgan said. “I never thought I would drop in coverage, but now that I am doing it, it is becoming more natural.” Morgan is down to 260 pounds after playing near 270 last season.

    Edge rushers are edge rushers in today’s game, so it might not be as big of a deal as it seems on paper. But with Kamerion Wimbley, Shaun Phillips, and Akeem Ayers also in the mix at outside ‘backer, it’s going to be a big training camp for MorganWe also can’t rule out a trade. Jun 10 – 10:39 AM

  12. surfbuc Says:

    Hoping this is the season where Gholston and Claiborne show their fire.I’m pulling for both.

  13. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    LDE-Derrick Morgan

    • Height: 6′ 3″ (1.91 m)
    • 40 yard dash time: 4.77 seconds

    Cap Number (2yrs Remaining on contract)

    • (2014)-$3,541,668
    • (2015)-$3,046,670

  14. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    *Derrick Morgan has more experience & production-from (4-3 DLE / 7 & 6-Technique) Then any defensive end currently on the roster. Keep in mind a statement recently made by-Former Buccaneers DE Steve White-“some guys will struggle lining up- in the gap between the RT and the TE”.

    Derrick Morgan Production LDE:

    (2013) Snaps (813) Sacks (7)- Tackles (25) Hurries (37)
    (2012) Snaps (930) Sacks (9)- Tackles (39) Hurries (42)
    (2011) Snaps (635) Sacks (3)- Tackles (23) Hurries (19)

  15. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Possible Depth Chart-(Defensive Line)

    • #90 Michael Johnson RDE 27 6-7 270 6 Georgia Tech*
    • #92 William Gholston RDE 22 6-6 281 2 Michigan State

    • #93 Gerald McCoy LDT 26 6-4 300 5 Oklahoma
    • #95 Euclid Cummings RDT 23 6-4 275 R Georgia Tech*

    • #98 Clinton McDonald LDT 27 6-2 297 6 Memphis
    • #97 Akeem Spence LDT 22 6-1 307 2 Illinois

    • #94 Adrian Clayborn LDE 25 6-3 280 4 Iowa
    • #91 Derrick Morgan LDE 25 6-3 271 5 Georgia Tech*Upgrade!
    • #56 Chaz Sutton LDE 24 6-5 263 R South Carolina

  16. LUVMYBUCS Says:


    • Seattle Seahawks- (August 29, 2011) Traded CB Kelly Jennings to Cincinnati for DT Clinton McDonald

    • Seattle Seahawks- (March 16, 2010) Traded DE Darryl Tapp to Philadelphia for DE Chris Clemons and a 2010 fourth-round draft pick.

  17. Discount08 Says:

    I agree guys, Gholston is some kind of freak of nature. He is built like Clowney in a way and is coming along great with no injuries or anything. “knocking on wood now”! But, I think Gholston will have an easy and I mean easy 6-10+ sack season this year. I mean look at his physique alone.

  18. kevin Says:

    I am still a believer in claiborne although he is not lovies typical long edge rusher….but bowers….I dont know. Seems like he may be a waste of talent after all

  19. PRBucFan Says:

    AC will be back with a vengeance this year.

    I still think about the very legal sack-fumble he had on Matt Ryan last year that was flagged and taken away.

    Pisses me off to this day.

  20. Waterboy Says:

    Don’t forget that perfectly legal sack fumble on Drew Brees that drew that a BS penalty also. AC will be fine, he was coming off an injury last season and playing in a terrible defensive system.

  21. Waterboy Says:

    Here was the hit. That fumble would’ve been a game changer.

  22. Back, from Davie Jones Locker Says:

    You guys aren’t being”unfair”
    You are being ignorant.
    Just like you were when McCoy was injured two years in a row. Same F^*%ing dumbasses wanted to cut him, Too.
    Yet- as dumbasses are so prone to do,- you’ve learned nothing.
    Explains your lofty status in life, I’m sure. Lol

    Both McCoy and Bowers were coming off terrible injuries last year. Injuries that weren’t fully healed. Bowers was far worse. Achilles’ tendons take forever to heal.
    Plus they worked for the leagues stupidest coach. He was a tiny lil dictator, who insisted they run defensive schemes from his crappy .500 tiny college team.

    I would imagine both would be back greatly improved. Being healthy does that for you.

    As far as Bowers being out of shape last year- well, yeah, brain surgeons! Achilles surgery! No bike, no treadmill. Nothing.

    I’m sure he’ll be ready to rock for training camp. He was rated the number one college player just 3 years ago. You don’t get that by being some lazy slacker! Being a lazy slacker gets you a job as an uninformed poster on JoeBucsfan!

    I hope that Clsyborn, Bowers, and Gholston all are emerging monsters this year.
    And I expect that will be the case

  23. Stanglassman Says:

    I couldn’t agree more with you PR about that ATL game that call still get me mad too.

    I think we should keep an open mind and wait to see how these players excel in this new system.

    Jim W.-I think you are the only person I have ever heard say AC plays with no heart. IMO When healthy AC sets the tone with his toughness and tenacity for the defense.

  24. Back, from Davie Jones Locker Says:

    PR and Waterboy,
    Those penalties both made me furious! The only thing wrong with those hits, were that they knocked to of the NFL’s lil darling into lala land.

    How they claim fair and completive play, when they blatantly protect certain players, in certain situations!

    Seattle could have sacked either if them, leading with their Helmets- for a helmet to helmet hit, and you wouldn’t have seen a flag

  25. cbell96825 Says:

    No mention of steven means here ?