Upgrading Will Gholston To “Average”

July 8th, 2014
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The numbers crunchers over at Pro Football Focus have changed their tune about Will Gholston.

Joe has been a big fan of defensive lineman Will Gholston since former Bucs rock star general manager Mark Dominik drafted him in the fourth round last year. Gholston had all the measurements of a monster defensive end (he also can play tackle). The only question was his motor; his heart.

Well, last year, Gholston showed more than a former second round pick of a defensive end had shown in three seasons.

Gholston went from very much a bubble player to being on the gameday inactive list, to spot action and finally starting in December.

The nerds over at Pro Football Focus have had a sudden epiphany over Gholston, it seems, and have changed his status, types Gordon McGuinness.

Considering his strong end to the season, we opted to up defensive end William Gholston to “Average Starter.” He struggled when he initially saw the field but finished the year strong.

Gholston is in a battle to win a starting spot at left defensive end with Adrian Clayborn. If Clayborn wins the battle, then Joe expects Gholston to get a lot of playing time despite not starting.

Gholston is very versatile. Not only would he likely be in a regular rotation at end, he very likely could be in a rotation at tackle on passing downs. Bucs coach Lovie Smith places a high priority on putting opposing quarterbacks on the ground. Gholston has shown he can do this better than others currently on the roster.

16 Responses to “Upgrading Will Gholston To “Average””

  1. flmike Says:

    I loved this pick, was standing next to one of our writers when it was made (yes they make us the weekends of major events) and his reaction was, “if they can keep him motivated, he’ll be the starter in 2 years.” The kid has literally unlimited potential, with his size, speed and strength he can be the dominant LDE in the league.

  2. Buc the Haters Says:

    I agree with Joe & flmike… He can basically be a stronger/little bit heavier version of JPP

  3. The_Buc_Realist Says:

    Clayborn will be the one who see’s limited play time if “Bucs coach Lovie Smith places a high priority on putting opposing quarterbacks on the ground.” Its a shame that the Bucs could not have got a low draft pick for clayborn as he will not be resigned once the season is over.

  4. biff barker Says:

    LDE, RG, QB and MLB are the biggest question marks this year. We need solid, not spectacular play from each to be a contender.

    Good luck to Gholston, the guy is bringing the effort forth.

  5. Adam L. Says:

    Saying he only has ONE QUESTION – his HEART is like saying, “It’s a nice car… it’s just the engine sucks.”

  6. Bucsfanman Says:

    @Biff- I’m not sure that I agree 100% about MLB and LDE. They brought in Fletcher for depth and I think Mason will do just fine. Clayborn’s got some motivation with moving to the left and the Bucs not picking up his option. Frankly I think he’s going to emerge as a force on the left. With Gholston, they have depth. All of this, of course, is predicated on these players picking up the system.
    If all goes well…”down goes Brees”,”down goes Cam”,”down goes Ryan”, says Gene Deckerhoff!

  7. Bill Says:

    I love Tyoka Jackson 2.0.

  8. Louis Friend Says:

    He was unmotivated at MSU, but it’s amazing what some paychecks can do for a guy once he realizes what his talent can buy him. And good for us that the light seems to have come on for him. He’s a freak athletically and I’m guessing he’ll only get better in 2014.

  9. Rob Says:

    We need Gholston to become the next Michael Bennett

  10. Clintro Says:

    So let me see a 4th round DL pick struggled in the beginning of his rookie season??? wow go figure. LMAO

    People expect every play to be a superstar fromday one??

  11. Bucsfanman Says:

    No excuses Clintro! He should’ve been Reggie White!

  12. biff barker Says:

    “Clayborn’s got some motivation with moving to the left and the Bucs not picking up his option. Frankly I think he’s going to emerge as a force on the left. With Gholston, they have depth.”
    I don’t see Clayborn starting at LDE for more than a few games. Gholston is by far the better athlete. AC will play LDE when Gholston moves inside but the primary role is to rotate behind Johnson IMO.
    I’m not dumping on Clayborn and hoping to be dead wrong, but he is just too slow off the snap and has limited pass rushing skills.

  13. Bucfever40 Says:

    I agree Biff, Clayborn really hasn’t had a chance to grow in a system while healthy. As a rookie, AC was busting up plays behind the line of scrimmage, and looked good rushing the passer, but having that serious knee injury and an abbreviated training camp, I think disrupted his growth in that position. This will really be his first “full” off-season and with Lovie & crew selling the Tampa 2 again, he amongst others, will show big gains in year 4!

  14. Bucsfanman Says:

    Well, I guess either way we’re in a good position. Like you said earlier Biff, we just need solid production at the position.
    @Bucfever- You might be right about the injury. He doesn’t seem as explosive as before. I’m chalking it up to the scheme and hoping for a “coming out” party for AC and company.

  15. Jim Walker Says:

    Clayborne is horrible. Rewatch the St. Louis game. After Long got hurt Clayborne got owned by the backup. Watch the play after his 15-yard Roughing The Passer penalty. Clayborne is thrown like a rag doll.

  16. PRBucFan Says:

    AC is horrible?

    Ahahahaha your like a broken record with your garbage ranting about the St.Louis game. One game is supposed to provide the end all be all of his abilities right?

    Cause he wasn’t a finalist for DROY and hasn’t been coming back from injury since and he didn’t come on strong at the end of last season when he was finally getting healthy again?