Offensive Line Will Be Tested Quickly

June 6th, 2014
If Bucs OT Demar Dotson and his fellow linemen can do just a decent job of pass blocking, maybe the Bucs offense will be OK.

If Bucs OT Demar Dotson and his fellow linemen can do just a decent job of pass blocking, then maybe the Bucs offense will be OK.

No, Joe cannot look at the offensive line with a straight face and say to anyone listening or reading, “Eh, no problem!” Joe sees holes.

Left tackle Anthony Collins may very well be a good tackle. He is sort of like the Josh McCown of offensive tackles. To use a term coined by the stat nerds, Collins has a small sample size. The guy has never started half a season. Not sure how that could inspire confidence in any Bucs fan.

Then there is left guard Carl Nicks, who has been virtually invisible since bowing out in the middle of the 2012 campaign because he could no longer physically push himself beyond the pain of his turf toe (Joe saw that toe with his own eyes and it was gross, damn near as big around as a beer can and cherry red).

Evan Dietrich-Smith is a fine pickup. No issue there at center. At right guard, a current coaching intern on the Bucs’ staff said on local radio if projected starter Oneil Cousins is in the lineup, then he will shut off his TV. Demar Dotson at right tackle is a competent player but, sorry, despite what the spreadsheeters say, Joe just doesn’t see Dotson as the second coming of Dan Dierdorf. Guards Jamon Meredith and Patrick Omameh aren’t soothing.

So forgive Joe if probably the most important unit on a team is keeping Joe awake at night.

It seems the “Custodian of Canton,” eye-RAH! Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune, isn’t yet won over and took to Twitter to explain his concerns.

Now Joe noted earlier this week how well Josh McCown played in a shotgun formation behind a suspect line in Chicago. At best, it appears the current offensive linemen are more adept at pass blocking than run blocking.

So maybe there is a reason offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford so much wants an “up-tempo” offense to mirror most teams’ two-minute offenses. If the line can block a little bit in a shotgun formation, McCown might be OK.

The pieces to the puzzle, some seven weeks before training camps starts, are beginning to take shape.

17 Responses to “Offensive Line Will Be Tested Quickly”

  1. buc4lyfe Says:

    The way our veteran offensive line played last year I’m not worried. look at the path Donald Penn took to become a big money starter, 1st round pick doesn’t always equal productive starter just ask lovie about gabe carimi

  2. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    I would rather have this line, with having a chance to play average, then the line of the past 2 years. They were a bunch of paper pro-bowlers. Penn gave up the second most sacs of all tackles, left and right last year. after the last 2 years even just rolling the dice on some new guys is a better alternative.

  3. phil Says:

    We can only hope that Greg Hardy is suspended the first game of the season.

  4. David Says:

    This is why L&L have come out wanting to have a mobile quarterback. Hopefully something changes. I’m nervous as hell about this line. But hey I complete confidence in last year’s line and that got me nowhere. Lol

  5. Harry Says:

    We might have more offensive weapons on this team than we have ever had: VJax and Evans split out wide, ASJ and Tim Wright in a dbl TE set with one in motion to fill the slot, and either Sims or Martin as the lone back. That is a great group, maybe the best ever.

    But it means nothing if that Oline can’t block. And the Oline is not Lovie’s strong suit. Lets hope.

  6. Captain Stagger Says:

    There is a very good free agent guard from JAX, Nwaneri, we have the cash, why haven’t we picked him up????

  7. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    If !!! He becomes available trade for G/T Alex Boone

    “49ers RG Alex Boone is unhappy with his current contract and is skipping OTAs.
    Entering season four of a five-year, $7.45 million deal, Boone is owed $2 million base salary this season.

    The 49ers conceivably could try to trade Boone if they think this will become a problem. However, if Boone were to hold out into the season, they also could roll the dice with Looney and/or Martin at right guard as long as Boone holds out. If Boone held out the whole year, his contract would toll and he’d go through this again in 2015. However, he can hold out up to ten games and then return to accrue his season toward free agency.

    Boone started all 32 games the past two seasons and was PFF’s No. 2 right guard in 2012 before falling off as a pass blocker in 2013. In 2013, Boone remained at right guard, but showed he retained his versatility when he replaced Joe Staley at left tackle in Week 13 against the St. Louis Rams. Where he line up across from Robert Quinn, and DOMINATED HIM. So for those that concerned about Anthony Collins or Demar Dotson-Boone would be a solid insurance policy.


    Colin Kaepernick ($126 million extension)
    *Which they had to convert $3.27 million of ILB Navorro Bowman $4 million (2014) base salary into a signing bonus in order to create cap space-for Kap’s extension..

    Then-the 49ers are going to find it extremely difficult to pay…

    -Joe Staley (In line for contract extension)
    -LG Mike Iupati (In line for contract extension
    -Vernon Davis (in line for contract extension)
    -Michael Crabtree (In line for contract extension)

  8. Jim Says:

    Can’t wait to see our QB of the future, ‘cement shoes’ behind this line!

  9. Bucnjim Says:

    For the past five years all we’ve heard is how good the O-line will be THIS year. Never living up to all the hype! Nice guys, but didn’t transition to the field very well. After watching the Rams game several times I’m going to ask all of you how much worse can it really be than that? Every single lineman that game was an embarrassment! Quinn knocked two of our O lineman on their A$$ on the same play. What a Joke! Your best lineman are usually the Blue Collar bad attitude guys that hardly anyone has ever heard of. Seems that is the direction of L&L. No big names just big nasty’s!

  10. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    buc4lyfe Says
    “The way our veteran offensive line played last year I’m not worried.”

    You should be. The entire offense is being adjusted to the strengths of Josh McCown and the two toughest games of the season come right at the start of the season. It is entirely possible that McCown will get injured in one of those games.

    And that would mean Glennon would have to play in an offense that is geared toward another QB with another play style. Glennon still needs time to grow.

    For example, Josh McCown is more mobile. The oline will be used to that. If McCown is injured, Glennon will come in and guess what? He’s a statue in the pocket. He may well get injured as well.

  11. Jim Walker Says:

    This unit is why the Bucs win 6 games tops next year.

  12. Joseph Falzone Says:

    I am very nervous about this new O-line. I want to believe that they are much better then last year. This offense is what is going to make us or brake us. Yes we have some real talent on offense But that o-line makes me nervous. I know defense’s win games but you need a good offensive line… We have Josh McCown,Vincent Jackson, Mike Evans, Doug Martin, A.S.J. but if we don’t have a good o-line none of these great players mean nothing. Sorry I forgot Charles Simms…

  13. buddha Says:

    Don’t see Carolina being much of a threat in Game #1. They have even a worse offensive line than ours and both starting wideouts from last year are gone as is their Al;l-Pro Left tackle. Cam has talent but he will be running for his life. Bucs 17-Carolina 10.

  14. Charles Says:

    You can’t rebuild a team as bad as the Bucs in one season. Year two, the emphasis will be on the OL.

  15. Pawel Says:

    If collins played a solid 8 games last year then why not 8 games this year, thats good enough for me!

  16. Swaggy64 Says:

    The most important man at One Buc Place this offseason is o-line coach George Warhop. He coached Cousins in Cleveland, so I’m assuming he recommended him to Lovie. Maybe Warhop thinks there’s untapped potential there. I’m dubious myself, but I won’t let go of my optimism for the season until reality forces me too. The question marks on the Bucs’ o-line are not holes, though, they are just unproven commodities. This is their chance to prove themselves. Did it ever occur to any of you moaners and groaners that these guys are very much aware of the situation they are in? Not every player who becomes a viable starter does so in a steady progression. Sometimes the light comes on all at once.

  17. fritz50 Says:

    On the other hand, I seem to remember the Joes & everyone else were pretty sure of the O-linelast year, including myself, of course….Just saying ‘ya never know’