Top 10 Bucs X-Factors For 2016 – No. 2

July 15th, 2016

EvansJacksonThe Bucs have a pile of key question marks entering the 2016 season. Most teams do.

For this countdown series, Joe looks at this year’s top X-factors, guys with question marks who could be great difference-makers, positive or negative, based on changes in their performances.

Vincent Jackson – No. 2

This was an easy pick for Joe, though many Bucs fans might find it controversial. But just look at what happened last year — and what didn’t happen this offseason.

The Tampa Bay offense crumbled without Vincent Jackson, who missed eight games with two different knee injuries. The Bucs didn’t have the depth to recover, and they didn’t invest in receiving depth this offseason. Joe remains in disbelief at the latter.

So is V-Jax a 33-year-old embarking on the season that knocks him out of football after an injury-plagued campaign? Or is he a contract-year veteran, one who takes meticulous care of his body, waiting to explode for a new contract?

A down 2016 for V-Jax spells a sure losing record for the Bucs, Joe believes, and it forces their hand in the 2017 NFL Draft. A solid, healthy year, by Jackson’s standards, takes a mountain of pressure off Mike Evans’ K-Y hands and provides America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston, the diverse offense he deserves.

Jackson’s season easily could swing either way.

Mike Smith – No. 3

Kwon Alexander – No. 4

Jacquies Smith – No. 5

Brent Grimes – No. 6

Jameis Winston – No. 7

Charles Sims – No. 8

J.R. Sweezy – No. 9

Gerald McCoy — No. 10

20 Responses to “Top 10 Bucs X-Factors For 2016 – No. 2”

  1. cmurda Says:

    Agree with Joe on this one. V Jax is a giant X factor for us this year. Considering the turmoil that has been caused due to ASJ being either unable to stay on the field or to act like a professional when on it, I will predict ASJ at #1.

  2. Bucsfanman Says:

    A lot of people will point to offensive stats from 2015 and say we did OK. I disagree. Much of that was “garbage time”. This offense really struggled without VJax. A healthy VJax, even at 33, equals better offensive production and possibly more wins.

  3. TEBUCS Says:

    I agree with this one!

    Any guess on who Joe will pick as the #1 X-Factor? I’m going with Doug Martian staying healthy for back-to-back years and giving America’s Quarterback a much needed running game….

  4. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Kenny Bell should have been #2.


  5. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    #1 has to be Koetter.

  6. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Ding ding ding! Bonzai got it. Of course it is Koetter. Lol at Kenny Bell being #2. The only question about Bell is if he will make the 53 man roster.

  7. DB55 Says:

    So is V-Jax a 33-year-old embarking on the season that knocks him out of football after an injury-plagued campaign?
    Although I hate to say it, yes. But I think a baptism by fire for the youngsters would be a good thing. Adversity is what makes you great.

  8. chromolly Says:

    ole kenny bell..All draft classes have their ‘dexter jacksons and in this case “kenny bell’s

  9. Pickgrin Says:

    If Jackson plays in all 16 games. he will surpass 1000 yards again and is probably good for at least 7 or 8 TDs.

    I would not be at all surprised to see Jackson resigned to a fair for both sides 2 year deal at $4-5M per year.

    VJax takes great care of his body and strikes me as one of those players that will be able to stave off father time an extra couple seasons more than the average player and still be a very effective NFL receiver into his mid 30s

  10. Asdf Says:

    Mike Evans #1

  11. Buccfan37 Says:

    I suspect opponents will tackle going after VJ’s knees and production. The Bucs are likely better ready to substitute a capable but nowhere as experienced replacement.

  12. tmaxcon Says:

    vjax is key to offense this year. bucs could lose Martin but they can’t lose vjax not a single proven player on the roster at wr after evans and vjax.

  13. DefenseRules Says:

    Love VJax and agree that the Bucs missed him big time last year. Really hope he makes it injury-free through this entire season, but still … Don’t see VJax as being that critical cog making the difference between a winning and losing season. My gut feel is that Coach Koetter and Jameis will spread the ball around much more this year than they did last year. Ball-control and time-of-possession will be the keys to our offensive philosophy I think. The run-game will be almost as big this year as it was last year (our OLine is better at run-blocking than pass-blocking most seem to feel). TEs will get more balls thrown to them, as will the RBs. WRs will get their share, but I doubt that Bucs will have 2 WRs with 1,000-plus yards each. What I find interesting in this list of 10 is that Mike Evans is missing (at last thus far) … Mike has to pick up his game significantly for the Bucs to have a winning season.

  14. 813bucboi Says:

    1.roberto….GO BUCS!!!!

  15. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    Anquoin Boldin can replace him if we’d go out and sign him.

  16. Harry Says:

    V-Jax was an excellent choice Joe. He could be a huge difference maker.

  17. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    chromolly Says
    “ole kenny bell..All draft classes have their ‘dexter jacksons and in this case “kenny bell’s”

    That’s going a bit too far. Dexter Jackson II was afraid of being hit. So afraid that he couldn’t even catch kicks.

    Kenny Bell is still an unknown potential. He could still be good. Or not. But we won’t know until TC, PS or RS.

  18. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Just realized…our freshly drafted DE is not on the list. That might make #1 more of a 50-50 shot.

  19. » Blog Archive » Top Bucs X-Factors For 2016 — No. 1 - Tampa Bay Bucs Blog, Buccaneers News Says:

    […] Vincent Jackson – No. 2 […]

  20. Bschucher Says:

    “A down 2016 for V-Jax spells a sure losing record for the Bucs”. Speaking in such absolutes as it relates to football is ridiculous.