McDonald Removes “Complacent” From Spence

July 28th, 2014
Clinton McDonald

Defensive tackle Clinton McDonald, and his shiny new Super Bowl ring, have made a huge impact already.

The explosion off the Tampa Bay defensive line from new nose tackle Clinton McDonald was evident to those watching practice yesterday, the first of the season in pads.

McDonald, however, is a quiet guy off the field, very reserved around media but an open book and intensely driven with teammates.

Having a guy around like McDonald, who had 5 1/2 sacks in a part-time role with the Seahawks last season, is new experience for Akeem Spence, the Bucs’ second-year nose tackle.

Spence was gifted a starting job last season from the New Schiano Order. He played quite solid for a rookie, but Spence admits he wasn’t the player he should have been. Spence told Joe that McDonald’s presence has thoroughly overhauled Spence’s approach and attitude.

 “I like Clinton because he pushes me, you know what I’m saying, just him coming here and us playing the same position and he pushes me. And also, I watch how he works and he made me take my game to another level because last year, you know, at times I got complacent,” Spence said.

But now just having a guy to compete with every day, plus a guy who I can ask a lot of questions. You know he played on the Super Bowl champs and had a big role with great players to learn from. Whatever I can pick off his brain is valuable, and there’s a lot to pick and it helps.

“Doing it every day. Being consistent with him. Not just like coming to work and having a great Monday. He comes to work every day and he’s consistent and hard in every drill, from the bag drill to the sleds. I just like, ‘I gotta be like that guy.’ He’s got six years in the league. So I’m trying to be like that guy. I’m just mocking everything he and [Gerald McCoy] does.”

Keep in mind Bucs general manager Jason Licht and friends already have noticed a change in Spence and claim he’s in a position to keep his starting job.

Of course, Joe had to dive deeper into why Spence thought he got “complacent” last year. Was it commonplace in the locker room after an 0-8 start? Was it backlash on coaches?

Spence said it was simply his immaturity and inconsistent drive because he had no competition, “I knew I was going to be out there the next week.” He said he got too relaxed in his role, like a player might be at times in college.

Joe loves what’s brewing at nose tackle. Defensive line depth has been a foreign concept in Tampa for far too long.

14 Responses to “McDonald Removes “Complacent” From Spence”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We have several other positions that will benefit from competition this year….
    Think about……RB, TE, DE, QB, WR, CB & even S.
    Bringing in quality players to compete really helps our depth…

  2. buc'd Up Says:

    I like Spence. Hope he finds his inner beast and unleashes it this seaon. Also, looking over ones sholder is a great way to keep motivated.

  3. biff barker Says:

    These guys should be a very nice rotation regardless of who starts.

    Question, if Euclid Cummings winds up on the PS or elsewhere, could either of these guys play the 3T? I thought I saw somewhere that McDonald could play other positions.

  4. Touch_Down_Tampa_Bay Says:

    When there is nothing to look forward to like last year is good to have somebody ready to take your job away.

    Another evidence of “The General” being in command of his illusions…

  5. FanOfBucs Says:

    Competition is good!

  6. Harry Says:

    This is what depth is about. I am excited by what this will mean in terms of the players working harder and in the event someone goes down for a while (God forbid it be an OG! No depth there)

  7. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I loved Spence last year. I think he has a lot of potential unreached potential. His ‘dope’ experience concerns me, and I hope it is not a sign of things to come, because I think that he can be better than Booger was…a lot better.

    Tampabaybucfan Says
    “We have several other positions that will benefit from competition this year…Think about……RB, TE, DE, QB, WR, CB & even S.”

    There is no competition at quarterback. Josh McCown could have a horrid training camp and still be a lock to start the season as the number one QB. It was part of the commitment made to him.

    How many games into the season it lasts is up for debate, but there is no competition at QB in Training Camp. To say otherwise is thinking with your emotions because you want Glennon to start.

  8. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    And, as we all know, Training Camp is a different animal than live game situations. It is Live games that will determine McCown’s future. Not TC.

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  10. snook Says:

    Just stay away from the reefer please….

  11. mpmalloy Says:

    Lol, this is the happy comments section,
    unlike the Nicks post which is the unhappy
    comments section.

    Our defensive line is like The Avengers.
    Our offensive line (minus EDS) is like the lawn service crew.

    That just means the O-line needs to WORK 10x harder!

  12. Hawk Says:

    @ BuccaneerBonzai
    We may be thinking the same thing, but from a different perspective. I believe that you are right that the ‘competition’ at QB is not for the opening day starting role. First of all, the competition is Glennon against himself for his future. Then, based on his production, this TC and preseason will also tell the coaches how long/short of a leash they will give McCown.
    Do we disagree?

  13. pick6 Says:

    feels like old times with the d line coaches just uncovering seemingly capable players from all pedigrees, from touted players like booger to surprises like spires and stylez white. even nobodies like jovan haye and chuck darby would come in, learn the system, and contribute more than just about any DL not named gerald mccoy has contributed since those days

  14. Thomas Says:

    Get used to it, people. You now have a coach who knows what the heck he’s doing. Lovey ALWAYS has depth ad D-line unless its ravaged by injuries, which is what happened his last year in chicago.