V-Jax Plays “Small-Guy” Game

June 14th, 2014
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A fresh scouting report is in

Those who claim Bucs rookie Mike Evans is a clone of Vincent Jackson aren’t being fair.

Joe’s seen with his own eyes that Evans is raw, which he’s supposed to be at just 20 years old and only a few years into his football career. It’s evident in practice in route-running work.

On the flip side, Jackson is unique for a man his size.

In case you missed it, Jackson’s peers voted him as the 44th best player in the NFL and the ninth best receiver overall for 2014. Bucs cornerback D.J. Moore says Jackson gets the respect because of his versatility, in addition to his production.

“He’s a tall guy that runs small-guy routes,” Moore told Joe. “He gets up out of the routes real well, and he doesn’t just line up at the bottom of the numbers and run he kind of gives you a little extra and what not.

“I had the pleasure of covering Steve Smith last year in practice [in Carolina]. He would do the same thing. The older guys kind of make it harder for you. They read your releases and stuff like that. Vincent is really good at that and can be effective anywhere on the field.”

What can Joe say about V-Jax? He’s a great football player, though Joe holds out hope Jackson can be better, maybe fight a little harder to not get caught from behind, cure the dropsies that plagued him a bit in 2013 but not in 2012, and show less frustration on the field.

Big picture, however, Joe is splitting hairs with that critique of Jackson. The big man is one of the great pass catchers in Bucs history coming off back-to-back 1,200+ yard seasons.

15 Responses to “V-Jax Plays “Small-Guy” Game”

  1. biff barker Says:

    With Murphy’s or Maybe Owusu’s speed on the outside, VJax can take some snaps in the slot. With Evans and Wright in the mix, that’s pretty tough on a secondary.

  2. biff barker Says:


    If we carry 6, We may see Streeter as the dark horse. He may be a bit raw, but he has both the size and speed the Buc’s covet.

    Joe, have you seen enough of him in practice to think he has a shot?

    Streeter definitely is talented, and he’s a big body they seem to covet. But Joe’s not thinking he’s got a shot unless there’s an injury. Definitely, add Eric Page into the mix there and Russell Shepard, who already is getting top roles on special teams like he had last year. Lavelle Hawkins is still around, and preseason will be big for him. And then there’s the mysterious potential use of Jeff Demps. Throw in the Bucs planning a bunch of two tight-end stuff, and Streeter has bad odds.–Joe

  3. Macabee Says:

    The good news is that Jackson is coming off back-to-back 1,200+ yard seasons and it doesn’t matter who the QB is. That’s really good news for Josh McCown!

    On Streeter. I hope we find a place for this guy. With his measurements, speed, and skills plus his knowledge of the Tedford playbook, the Saints and Panthers are going to be all over this kid like a cheap suit. The Panthers are in dire need of WRs and the Saints are not having good luck with the 6-6 Coleman kid they picked up from Rutgers!

  4. OB Says:

    Joe with Evens, another big TE, and either a fast HB and/or fast slot, VJAX will not be like a Recon pilot, alone and unafraid like last year. Not to mention the theatrics in our QB follies last year.

    Based on what you have said so far this year, I am sure that in some games, the only limit on points and yardage will be how fast the Defense can get the ball back. I would also say that the prima donnas are also gone, so, except for effort, it may be a boring time for the pen and mic club.

  5. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Big picture, however, Joe is splitting hairs with that critique of Jackson. The big man is one of the great pass catchers in Bucs history coming off back-to-back 1,200+ yard seasons.

    Couldn’t have said it better myself Joe. I’ll just say Amen!

  6. Harry Says:

    Joe says, “A lot of people are banging a drum for Texas A&M’s Mike Evans, who is basically a clone of Vincent Jackson.”


    I think you said it Joe, lol.

    Yes, Joe’s written that before, doesn’t mean it was fair and on the money. Plus, Joe’s had more time to watch Evans. –Joe

  7. biff barker Says:

    “Throw in the Bucs planning a bunch of two tight-end stuff, and Streeter has bad odds.–Joe”

    Thanks Joe. This was the insight I was looking for on Streeter.

    Paige has shown promise and his fate will come down to ST I suppose. With the explosive speed of Herron underneath, and maybe Demps seeing some slot duty, I just can’t see needing a third undersized guy like Paige if he can’t lock down a return job.

  8. Westsidebucsfan Says:

    I think the entire team was frustrated last year. New year, new coach, new attitude. Let’s see what that brings… But he’ll still get caught from behind

  9. Bee Says:


    I know this is unrelated to the article but what are the chances of the Bucs signing CB Brandon Flowers? I know he might be expensive but it would be great to see him and Verner on the field together.

    Flimsy chance. –Joe

  10. Netwalker Says:

    I have little concern of him being caught from behind as long as he’s caught the ball. Getting caught from behind in the endzone is not a problem. The drops are troublesome, however. But with his YPC he will at least move the chains. Catch the ball and the rest will take care of itself.

  11. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    VJ will be 32 before the NFL season ends. At this stage, receivers usually do not get faster. The Bucs need other options to become offensive threats so VJ will see more favorable matchups. Of course this could mean his opportunity could be a lot less due to spreading the ball.

  12. Kevin Says:

    It really is splitting hairs….I was PISSED when Jackson had all those drops last year….but he was pretty much being targeted 40 times a game. It was stupid. This coaching staff has put together a great group of guys on offense. All the right pieces in the right places in terms of weapons. The OL is still a little concerning but I’m trying to focus on the good and remain optimistic going into the season. I look for Jackson to have his best year in the NFL this season. He’s gonna KILL defenses with this cast playing around him. Let’s just hope everyone stays healthy and I smell the playoffs for Bucs in 2014!!!!!!!!!!!! FIRE THEM CANNONS!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. ForgotAboutDre Says:


    I think we’ll be solid with Banks and Jenkins, I don’t think we need to bother spending a lot of money on another CB. I’d rather that money be but toward resigning Gerald McCoy.

  14. owlykat Says:

    Hey the way Murphy is playing now he needs to start and let Evans have the opportunity to watch VJax and work up to a starter gradually and just spell Murphy after he scores on his go routes. That will really open up things for VJax too since teams may start doubling Murphy. One day Evans will take VJax’s place and he needs to learn as much as he can now, and we will need Murphy ready then to be a star as our number two receiver.

  15. Doug Z Says:

    Touched on one thing… “showing frustration on the field”… I was often take aback by VJax’s poor body language after bad or poorly thrown plays.
    For such a well-spoken, classy guy, I always found it a turn off and somewhat surprising. It is a terrible quality for a supposed leader.
    That being said, I always wondered if what was going through his head was “Damn that clueless Josh Freeman (or hesitant MG rookie) for throwing that lousy pass, gonna get me clobbered”