Hargreaves Practices As Starting Outside Corner

August 22nd, 2016

Part of a revolution in the secondary.

Not the happiest of days for Alterraun Verner.

It seems the Bucs were extra wowed by the two acrobatic interceptions for rookie Vernon Hargreaves on Saturday night in Jacksonville.

Per Dirk Koetter, Hargreaves practiced today as a first-team cornerback. Previously, the No. 11 overall pick was getting nearly all of his first-team work at nickel cornerback.

So now what?

Clearly, Brent Grimes is the top dog at outside cornerback, not Hargreaves or Verner. If Hargreaves starts at outside cornerback Friday night against the Browns and looks comfortable, Joe will have to think Hargreaves nailed down that job.

Verner, however, didn’t play well at nickel last year, and second-year man Jude Adjei-Barimah has had a good training camp there to date.

There’s also the matter of Verner’s nearly $7 million for this season.

Interesting times in the Bucs’ secondary.

41 Responses to “Hargreaves Practices As Starting Outside Corner”

  1. salish_seamonster Says:

    Did Hargreaves make his interceptions from NB position or outside? He could still be the primary NB and Verner goes outside in nickel.

  2. Cobraboy Says:

    Meaningless. PS is a time to see where guys can fit. It’s his time for some 1st team reps.

    Verner is going no where.

  3. D-Rome Says:

    This is interesting. I’ve been saying it with Banks this pre-season and now I’ll say it with Verner: Perhaps the previous coaching staff saw issues with Banks and Verner that the current coaching staff is seeing now. Perhaps last season the team simply wasn’t talented enough (which was my argument last season) despite people saying the players needed to be coached up.

  4. mike Says:

    Vh3 is off to a great start but will need some time. I think Verner we be on the field all the time too. Heck of a turn around for this position…. lots of talent and depth.

  5. Erik w/ Clean Athletics 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans' Says:

    I feel Grimes and Hargreaves is a stronger pair than Grimes & Verner.

    I do feel like Verner played pretty well at nickel though.

  6. Buc1987 Says:

    Banks and Verner are too tall for them…

  7. LargoBuc Says:

    Last year I recall Verner really struggling at LCB. In todays NFL you really do need four quality corners. So many sets with 4 wr 1 te, 3 wr 2 te etc. I think the “fab four”, Grimes, Verner, Hey Jude and VH3 Are all pretty good. On down and short, use Verner and Grimes on bump. On third and long, use VH3 and Grimes, as we’ve all seen how ineffective Verner is playing off. This is also assumeing the offense is in a 2 wr set.

  8. 813bucboi Says:

    @salish…the first came from the slot with verner at right cb….the second int came from the outside…VGH28 is a star in the making…he will continue to make plays that will impact the game….ramsey who?….GO BUCS!!!

  9. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    What a great problem to have….depth….

  10. Cobraboy Says:

    In today’s situational football NFL, there are no real “starters”, only 46 players for specific jobs on game day.

    Everybody is a starter on some situation, except maybe QB’s.

  11. Brian Says:

    Not sure they cut Verner loose even with his salary but I could def see VH3 at OCB… Hey Jude has also been a nice surprise and good to have.

  12. Lord Cornelius Says:


    Verner didn’t play bad in either preseason game from what i could tell. One of the big catches Robinson made was a freakish athletic catch on the sidelines that I’m not sure was defend-able. The TD to Yeldon wasn’t his fault – looked like a bad defensive call or missed assignment by a LB and it came after a turnover in our own territory. The TD to Hurns was just over Grimes hand and the only scoring drive that the defense gave up (that was not off a turnover).

    I don’t care if we have to pay our 3rd or 4th CB 7 million if it keeps our team deep. I’d be absolutely shocked if we cut Verner at this point. This is good news – we drafted Hargreaves in the top 1/3 of the 1st round – I’d hope he would be challenging for a top spot.

  13. Cobraboy Says:

    There is little purpose in saving money when the NFL has a cap as well as a minimum.

    Depth costs $$$. I LOVE having a seriously deep DBfield.

    Actually, this seems to be one of the deepest Bucs teams I can remember since The Glory Days.

  14. Kobe Faker Says:

    I like vh3 but wow

    Veneer went against Allen Robinson and burns with bottles qb and

    Vh3 went agianst bucsnation writers with henne throwing

    We need to sell more seats friday?

  15. unbelievable Says:

    It will be good to see VH3 out there against the 1’s… And see how he really matches up against other starters.

    I don’t think Verner is going anywhere yet though. I could also see VH3 moving between outside and nickel, the way Ronde used to.

  16. Kevin Says:

    I have not been impressed with the defensive scheme so far, but I’m hoping this weekend will look better. I’m not crazy about the corners STILL staying 10 yards back off the receivers off the line. I have been dreaming about watching a bucs game with press coverage for the last decade and I was convinced we would be seeing it. I realize there is a time and a place but you gotta at least USE IT when it’s necessary. You can’t let elite WR’s in this league just run around without disrupting they’re routes at all.

    As for Verner losing his starting spot to Hargreaves, that would just be stupid. If that happens and our kicker continues to miss than there is just a really strong mixture of bad luck and stupid in this team. I’m not freaking out but I am concerned. If this doesn’t improve dramatically when they play Cleveland….CLEVELAND!!!!!!!!! Then I will be freaking out!!!!!

  17. Trubucfan22 Says:

    I wouldnt doubt it if they groomed him in the mold of Barber. Outside CB in 2 WR sets and NB in 3 WR sets. I think he would be our best guy to cover inside routes. he has great athleticism, quickness, closing speed. No one else, other than Grimes, has those traits.

  18. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Kevin, the coaches are also testing what the players can and can’t do at this point in TC and preseason games. And they use the game tape to critique and learn from.

    The players and coaches want to win these games, but the most important things in preseason are staying healthy and learning, both for coaches and players.

    I would be shocked if Mike Smith rolls out off coverage every single play, like Lovie did. I think Mike is smarter than that.

  19. Pick6 Says:

    we will need all 5 CBs at different points in the season. Especially since Banks doesn’t seem to be making a strong case for the roster

  20. Defense Rules Says:

    Unbelievable and Trubucfan22 I agree with you … it’s just preseason and the coaches want to see what guys like Hargreaves can do against the other team’s top players. Bucs would be stupid to let Verner go for a measly $7 mil … that’s nothing for a good starting CB in today’s market. Anyone want to guess how long Grimes will play? This season? Next maybe? Verner’s only 27 and has a lot of years left hopefully. He’s been doing well so far this preseason, and Smitty will find a way to get his best guys onto the field. Actually wouldn’t be surprised to see him go with 4 CBs on the field in a number of situations (Grimes, Verner, Hargreaves and Jude), with Conte holding down the fort behind them (McDougald isn’t impressing me thus far).

  21. James Walker Says:

    We need the depth. One injury and Vernor is worth every penny.

  22. LakeLandBuc Says:

    They better get it right, quick, fast and in a hurry. They face Julio Jones, Mohammad Sanu and Audrey Robinson, Devonte Freeman, Justin Hardy, Jacob Tamme in a few weeks. I have watched both of the Falcons preseason games and their passing attack is lethal. I’m pulling for the Bucs, but we have to be realistic here. I agree with…. Defense Rules…. we need to throw 4 corners at the Falcons and 5 in a dime package.

  23. PRBucFan Says:

    At worst Verner will become the nickel which he actually excels at and unfortunately for Jude he will slide down a spot. Banks is all but last and for depth sake he makes the team imo.

  24. stanglassman Says:

    Giving VHlll first team reps on the outside was planned well before the 2nd preseason game I think he can take advantage of it but I wouldn’t read too much into this “development”.

  25. PRBucFan Says:

    And we told you VHIII was just fine lol.

  26. DB55 Says:

    Thank you Chris Conte for leaving Grimes on an island (twice) by himself only to get scored on. I know that when a qb scrambles the first person to chance him down should be the safety regardless of who might be running behind you.

    You are a fan fav, yes, the same fans that also like Hey Jude your man is wide open again. I’m confident the 2 of youz will have a long fruitfull career in the NFL even after you leave the Bucs org – lawd forbid.

  27. SB with Jameis Says:

    VH3 struggled at Nickle in practice because he has never played it. He is a natural OCB. We have a future star. If you still don’t believe it you soon will.

  28. Pickgrin Says:

    Assuming VH3 develops as he should – I can easily see him playing outside with a standard alignment – and then move inside to cover the slot when the nickle pkg is deployed and Verner will cover the outside on those plays. Ronde made some great plays inside doing exactly that.

  29. Brian Says:

    Kobe, it doesn’t matter who threw those passes VH3 picked the other night
    The plays he made on the ball was fantastic. They were not the type that Banks or Smith picked. Very different interceptions.

  30. 941bucsfan Says:

    Now verner is in trouble because he is not practicing with the first team. But ASJ practicing with the first team means nothing. Great article joe

  31. feelthepewterpower Says:

    I think Verner would be excellent in nickel/slot coverage, Joe…

    he seems to do best in press type coverage….and slot…you have to jam your receiver often to keep them from getting inside.

  32. feelthepewterpower Says:

    ps – Koetter is setting the competitive tone early…play competitive and your rewarded…dont play well…and you’re going to sit.

    Great message to the team!

  33. Kobe Faker Says:

    @ Brian

    ok, there is no difference between allen robinson with bortles throwing vs a 3rd stringer camp meat reciever with Henne throwing

    I think VH3 will have a long career here in tampa with a solid career, but he is a rook.

    we have here posters that think we should now cut verner LOL

    boys we need more talent and depth in this flawed roster and not less

    Our Dipsh1t GM drafts kickers in the 2nd round instead of picking needed players for our lack of playmakeing team

  34. James Walker Says:

    You will eat those words Kobe Faker.

  35. SB with Jameis Says:

    Hopefully without ketchup James Walker

  36. cmurda Says:

    I agree with Cobraboy. The depth in our secondary has been eye-opening. Ryan Smith, who hasn’t been talked about much, has played excellent. The only remaining question I have for the secondary is whether VH3 is better suited playing the slot or the outside. Either one is virtually a starter. The nickel corner will be on the field quite a bit especially in today’s pass happy NFL.

  37. Dave Says:

    I think grimes n Verner start outside with VH at nickel. Hey Jude and Robinson are the next two. Banks appears to be getting cut.
    At some point Verner may move to nickel but not at first.
    They need 3 starters in today’s nfl and they have it with hey Jude as a decent 4th. Not sure how Robinson is but it hasn’t been the beget ices I’ve heard about Banks so banks is gone.

    UNLESS Banks is tall and was good just not the fastest. I wonder if they’d gamble on him transitioning to safety if needed.
    Have not heard how the safety’s are doing.

  38. SB with Jameis Says:

    Nice thought Dave. Banks move to Safety rather than trade or cut. Have never really considered that one.

  39. SB with Jameis Says:

    On a side note: Todd Marinovich was arrested. He had a brown bag with Meth and Weed in it ALONG with his I.D.
    Note to future Methers or Weeders. …………..Don’t keep your ID IN the bag you carry your ISH in.

  40. SOEbuc Says:

    Good. His should get first team reps. And if he does do well with first team then it will be a straight up battle between him and alteraun. It makes me kinda mad because Alteraun has looked so good in camp and we’re paying him tons of money this year, but also we have this #11 pick that has all of a sudden showed what he was worth. And we still have Jude Ajei who has been doing good. Makes me laugh how we had the worst secondaryt last year and now we can’t figure out who’s the best to put in in which position.

  41. Bill Says:

    It’s not uncommon to see a teams starting CB move inside in Nickel with the backup coming in at CB. We may be seeing that develop with VH and Verner.