“Too Early To Tell” On Johnthan Banks

June 6th, 2014
Cornerbacks coach Gil Byrd weighs in on Johnthan Banks and ridding of the Schiano ways

Cornerbacks coach Gil Byrd weighs in on Johnthan Banks and ridding of the Schiano ways

The deprogramming of the Buccaneers cornerbacks is in full swing.

The radical change from the New Schiano Order approach is very evident in the secondary, not just on the defensive line, where the endless dancing is over.

Joe chatted 1-on-1 with Bucs cornerbacks coach Gil Byrd and the change in approach with teaching corners within Lovie Smith’s scheme.

One thing Joe asked was whether Byrd would label Johnthan Banks more of a cover corner or a press corner. Byrd said there are so many new techniques being learned that he has no good read yet.

“It’s really to early to tell because a lot of these guys have only played a certain way all their careers, but that doesn’t mean they can’t play the way we’re asking them to play,” Byrd said. “Banks and all of them have shown glimpses that they can play and do the things we’re asking them to do. The key now is who can do it consistently and not revert back to the, and I’m not going to say ‘bad habits.’ Like I told the players earlier, what they were taught in the past wasn’t wrong, it’s just not what we do.”

“So it’s just a preference. We prefer to do things differently than the old regime did, or when they were in high school or college. But it doesn’t mean it was wrong, it just doesn’t fit us and our scheme.”

Now Byrd is a classy guy and a very straight-shooter, but it sure seemed that if he didn’t want to say, ‘bad habits,’ then he at least wanted to say something that conveyed habits that weren’t professional enough for the Lovie Smith regime.

Byrd talked about how coaches have been studying cornerbacks’ strengths and providing customized techniques, where every player has his own “menu.”

Bryd said techniques that “fit your stature best” are being conveyed to players. “One way doesn’t fit everybody,” Byrd said, “especially at this position.”

The broader question, one of the biggest of the 2014 season, is just how much Lovie’s coaching staff can draw out of a talented defensive roster.

Last year, Greg Schiano found a way to be average on defense. Joe suspects Lovie will take it up a notch or two. And moving the chains in the second half once in a while should help, too.

27 Responses to ““Too Early To Tell” On Johnthan Banks”

  1. Wienaman Says:

    Who is Jonathan Banks?

  2. Meh Says:

    Seriously Wienaman? Starting cornerback (CB2), last year’s 2nd round draft pick (our first pick). Ringing a bell?

    I agree. Too early to call on Banks. He looked like a rookie last year, but the defensive scheming was terrible. I’m excited to see what he can bring this year.

  3. blackmagic00 Says:

    I have a feeling Banks won’t do well in cover. I hope I’m wrong.

  4. Bill Says:

    He’s in the bigger corner mold that worked in the cover two here: Barber, Kelly, Smith, etc.

  5. Alex Houpt Says:


    I pray that wasn’t a serious question….

  6. Touch_Down_Tampa_Bay Says:

    You know “JoBanks” – The corner who shut down Megatron when Revis got hurt… lol

  7. SAMCRO Says:

    If Banks is going to line-up on the X or Z receiver he needs to be able to master both cover and press. He has the length to press and cover the taller receivers but lacks the first step hip turn needed for the smaller receivers in press coverage, especially if he’s unable to deter the receivers break from the line of scrimmage. He needs a little cushion to keep these receivers in front of him. The good thing with the old Tampa 2 is that I don’t think Banks or any outside CB will be left on an island very often, but it’s nice to know that you can trust your guys when they are. I think our growing pains on defense this year will be on the secondary again. If we can generate that elusive pass rush it sure would take the pressure off, and minimize a lot of weaknesses that may exist with our DB’s. I hope the upgraded scheme and coaching makes the world of difference, and the fact that our corners will practice against quality receivers will certainly help also.

  8. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    If the roster was talented why did Lovie sign so many free-agents??? or are we trying to re-write history???

  9. Buc the Haters Says:

    Banks could be our younger version of Charles Tillman… And in college, a scheme similar to a Tampa 2 is where Banks gained his notoriety as a ballhawk/playmaker. I see big things for Banks in the Tampa 2 with his combination height, length, and good football speed.

  10. 1bucfan88 Says:

    Banks always had good athleticism, but his long speed has been his “weakness” if he has one. This scheme (predominantly zone) should help cover that up. I sure hope they keep coaching Banks up on being a press guy though. Cover 2 is nice as your base D but you need to get in the receivers face from time to time to throw off route timing, and from what I’ve heard Verner is a guy who almost never jams off he line.

  11. sam Says:

    I’d perfer mike jenkins too be our second corner. I think in this system he could be very solid.

  12. Buc the Haters Says:

    Personal preference on Banks vs Jenkins, but Banks is 3 inches taller. Better for us if he beats out Jenkins.

  13. Buc the Haters Says:

    Banks shut down Calvin Johnson for 30 minutes. No other CB on our roster has the combination of size & skills to accomplish that feat.

  14. ToesOnTheLine Says:

    Touch_Down_Tampa_Bay Says:
    June 6th, 2014 at 11:41 am
    You know “JoBanks” – The corner who shut down Megatron when Revis got hurt… lol

    Was going to say the same thing. Banks will be our best CB in a year or two…take it it the ‘Bank’

  15. ToesOnTheLine Says:

    Agreed Buc the Haters

  16. Destinjohnny Says:

    I worry about his speed or lack there of

  17. BFFL Says:

    It’s all about the pass rush

  18. Chrisfresh23 Says:

    I agree with 1bucfan88 jbanks speed has been an issue… He’s been getting dusted often besides making a play here and there.. He needs to get faster somehow … Other than that, I have a feeling he’s going to be a good player under lovie…….

  19. buc89 Says:

    Who “dusted” banks? He can make up for speed with high football IQ

  20. buc89 Says:

    I remember Leonard Johnson being the problem. Banks had some rookie moment but give him time

  21. Wienaman Says:

    Joe could have done the courtesy of deleting my post when he changed the title…original title of post was ” ‘Too Early to Tell’ on Jonathan Banks”. I know who Johnthan Banks is, just not Jonathan 🙂

  22. owlykat Says:

    Banks didn’t knock the ball loose from Megatron and save a touchdown. The rookie Safety from Miami did that and Banks just lucked into catching the ball the rookie knocked loose, which preserved the win and he then took all the credit! Hope he gets better in the Tampa Two but he has been an underachiever so far. I hope the Veteran All Pro from USF beats him out!

  23. Danati74 Says:

    He’s the the 6’2″ corner that won the J.Thorpe award for being the best corner in NCAA that year. He fell to us cuz his speed, but the guy the Jets drafted didn’t do any better. Takes time to be a good corner. We have always had small corners, but Lovie had Big corners in Chicago. We can mold this guy. Also is a bright kid with a family too. Were not the only team in the NFC south with big receivers.

  24. Hoppy Says:

    I look out for Banks to have a breakout year with these new coaches. I also believe that Ronde could have had another season if Lovey had been the coach last year.

  25. Bucfever40 Says:

    toesontheline, I too agree that Banks will be a well known name in this league, personally I thought he played rather well last year, some of his picks were out of pure athleticism, I’m telling you that we have a star in the making with Banks, I feel he’s similar to Aqib Talib, without the gangster mentality. Jonathan Banks will end up a fan favorite Buc for several years.

  26. RP Says:

    No more trail technique and never seeing the ball. ie keep the guy in front of you. Yeah!

  27. KeithInTampa Says:

    I agree that Banks showed a lot of promise last year, (especially as compared to Leonard Johnson) but Banks did make a number of rookie mistakes. Having said that, with Banks’ speed, I do think he can fit nicely into Lovie’s version of the “Tampa2”.