Biggest Hole

March 24th, 2017

Prickly Pete chimes in.

Every team, short of maybe the Belicheats, has a hole in its roster.

And the Bucs, per prickly Pete Prisco of CBS Sports, are no different. Prisco analyzed the roster and believes — wait for it — an offensive tackle is a glaring need for the Bucs.

They had major issues protecting James Winston at times last year. Their tackle play just wasn’t good enough. They need to try and find a guy they can plug and play for the next decade.

Ruh, roh. We all know by now what the Bucs think of their offensive line.

Now does Joe think Demar Dotson can play better? Sure.

But Dotson is not going anywhere, at least not this year. And if for some reason he cannot hack it, don’t be shocked if Kevin Pamphile or Caleb Benenoch move to right tackle.

Donovan Smith? Sadly, for some irrational reason, he has become a human punching bag for fans. Joe suspects it’s because of the unadulterated fertilizer regularly manufactured by the PFF tribe, who have so many folks hoodwinked.

Look, at worst, Smith is an average tackle who hasn’t missed one snap in his NFL career. Unless a guy is a total sieve, teams aren’t looking to run off guys who answer the bell week after week, especially in an age where decent offensive linemen are about as rare as a Statue of Liberty play.

74 Responses to “Biggest Hole”

  1. HFXBUX Says:

    Donovan Smith = Paul Gruber, terrible left tackles. Paul Gruber 0 pro bowls.. ZERO! Too bad the stick carriers weren’t around to run Gruber out of town vs letting him stick around and starT ever game for 12 straight years. How are the Bucs gonna win with that type of player. Bucs should have signed Laramie Tunisil and Tyron Smith in free agency this year. Licht has to spend that money. Bucs need to get rid of Licht, Smith, Dotson, Sims, and no shows David and McCoy and the TE that only blocks really good… Luke Sticker. That guys gotta go. #superbowl2018!

  2. TvD head ball coach Says:

    After the resigning of fan favorite Conte, and the horrible lack of judgment and talent evaluation of letting someone like Mcdougald walk over 2 mill I would have to saythat safety is now a glaring hole on the roster. I’m also very concerned about the center position.

  3. DallasBuc Says:

    Can’t run the ball (scapegoat Martin), can’t pass protect (thank Winston and his magical elusive pocket prowess) and generally get pushed around and pushed back at the point of attack but hey nothing to see here. Looking at the agenda talking points the oline is doing great because the guy who built it wants desperately to believe that instead of his lying eyes.

  4. Teflon Don Says:

    Who cares what a talking media head that covers all teams in the NFL has to say. This is slow season i’m sure these guys do not take the time out to really go through each teams roster. We are good on the O line way bigger holes to fill

  5. meh Says:

    The interior line is a much bigger problem then the tackles. Hawley isn’t very good. Evan Smith is a backup at best. Pamphile really didn’t play well. Sweezy is a huge question mark after back surgery.

  6. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    “HFXBUX Says:
    March 24th, 2017 at 7:29 am

    Donovan Smith = Paul Gruber, terrible left tackles. Paul Gruber 0 pro bowls.. ZERO!

    2 x All-Pro

  7. d-roca Says:

    Unadulterated fertilizer and the statue of liberty play in one article. Nice work joe! I like it alllllllllot. I agree too. These Olinemen coming out now arent polished, said the polish. Not the ot’s that are the problem. Lets get a rb who can make someone miss!!

  8. d-roca Says:

    Wow now i can ignore u too. Im guessing you werent around when gruber played. Not sure whyd u would even take a dig at him. Guy was a stud on terrible teams. Ring of honor material. Go bucs

  9. Capt.Tim Says:

    DE is our greatest need. Ayers is getting long in the tooth. J.Smith is always hurt. Spence is an unknown. None of the rest of lr DEs have any pass rushing skills
    Safety comes to mind
    If Darryl Smith retires- strong side LB is a worry
    Rb is a priority
    Wr is a need

    And there ya go

  10. Mort Says:

    Man you guys aren’t good at picking up sarcasm this morning…

    This just proves he doesn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground. Pete Priscilla is one of the least informed national pundits when it comes to the Bucs. I mean most of them are, but this dude is tippy top of that list.

  11. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    I’m not 100 percent certain, but I’m fairly sure that dis HFX dude was being snarky guys.

  12. macabee Says:

    Per Jenna Laine ESPN/Bucs

    Source tells me Bucknell offensive tackle Julien Davenport is meeting with Bucs offensive line coach George Warhop tonight for dinner and has a private workout with him tomorrow. He’s got upcoming private workouts with the 49ers, Cowboys and Giants and met with the Chargers before his pro day last week. He’s 6-foot-7, has an 87.5 inch wingspan and is a former basketball player. Great footwork.

  13. Iamkingsu Says:

    Jaboo has been scrambling around for his life at times for 2 years and joe wants to resign/keep the same exact players?? The fans and everyone else with two working eyes said the Bucs needed to sign a draft another receiver last off-season and looked what Jameis had to work with. You saw the product at receiver last year outside of ME 13.

    The oline can’t run block, pass block or even get out in space and touch anyone when screens are perfectly set up. Wtf gives? The oline is horrible you don’t need to be a so called football ‘expert’ to see that.

  14. DallasBuc Says:

    Licht cannot be in charge of evaluating the value of his own personnel decisions. It has become a conflict of interest and he should recuse himself!

  15. Guzzie Says:

    What’s wrong with installing a few quick hitting passing plays, the 4 vert offense is fun, but nothing wrong with some slants or crosses, of course JW runs around a lot, every play takes 5 seconds to develop, the oline can only hold guys so long especially when the WRs have no speed

  16. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    @Hxf – so were you joking or are you seriously one of the least informed Buc fans to ever post on this site?

  17. Tampa Tony Says:

    Sometimes I’m not even sure if the Joes watch the games. Smith was a drive killer in 2016 and was tied for the league lead in penalties

    This is coming from the same guys who wanted Manziel drafted and thought Vic Beasley was a bust and Dominik was a good GM so their analysis shouldn’t be taken too seriously

  18. jthv Says:

    Tampa Tony Says:
    March 24th, 2017 at 9:02 am

    “This is coming from the same guys who wanted Manziel drafted and thought Vic Beasley was a bust and Dominik was a good GM so their analysis shouldn’t be taken too seriously”

    Anddddd, you keep coming back for more?

  19. tmaxcon Says:

    No one killed more drives or was violated more than dotson. It was sad to see dotson embarrassed every single week. I’m surprised the safe spacers don’t have a mercy rule for players as bad as Dotson yet

  20. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    You’re right Guzzie conservative passing is how you win championships.

  21. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    All this down field throwing is why Belichess continues to whip HOF QBs. It plays into they’re hands. He could careless about a pass rush. He has a first and second round saftey in McCorty and Chung. Add to that he’ll keep himself a premier CB. The corner will take away your number WR and He brackets your number WR. Why teams haven’t noticed this is beyond me.

  22. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    The premier corner takes away your #2 WR and He brackets your #1 WR. The man gives away top pass rushers. He has advanced in the way he approaches the game. His defense plays from the back forward no longer the front backward.

  23. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Check Belichess resume going back to his days on Giants staff. He has playoffs wins against the liked of Joe Montana,Jim Kelly,Peyton Manning the list gose on and on.

  24. Bucballbaby84 Says:

    Biggest hole is safety still in my eyes. Obi melifonwu in the first round plz.

  25. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Sounds to me like you’re coming around to the idea of going Safety or Corner round 1 there Nos.

  26. MadMax Says:

    We have needs on the O line, but I wouldnt say its the biggest. In our division, you must have very capable DE’s and DB’s.

    Pass rush and Safety, to me, is our biggest holes. I also think RB and WR is very much needed. Just saw a mock where S Obi is our pick at 19. Im not gonna lie, I would be fine with that. Id rather be able to get him in the 2nd round though. I knew his stock was gonna jump….was one of the first around here touting him.

    We didnt do much at C or RT, so could there be a play in the cards for Ramczyk, Bolles, or maybe even C Elflein in the 2nd or 3rd? Makes you go hmmm.

  27. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    I have a feeling the Bucs are as well.

  28. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Ima say this Blake I’m I’ve been peepin them funky patriots man. They simply out thinking everyone man. S@$! disgust me these old mindsets and way of thinking. You beat them with a potent run game and conservative passing game.

  29. Ndog Says:

    Correct as much as I like Koetter one of our major issues is that he doesn’t throw enough short throws to help the oline. No line has to block longer than ours which makes then look worse than they are. Shorter routes and better receivers equals better line play.

  30. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    A run certainly helps against the pats. But its not as though they are slouches when it comes to defending against it. In fact they were the 4th best team in the league last season in run defense.

    In my honest opinion, and I know it sounds simple, you beat the Patriots by forcing them to make more mistakes than you do. Be it with a blistering pass rush, or forcing turnovers. The key to beating the Patriots is forcing Tom Brady into having an off day.

    But thats just my 2 cents.

  31. Xandtar Says:

    If we get to #19 on draft day and not a single offensive lineman has been chosen, we take the best one. It is not very often you get the best college OT in the nation at such a low draft price, and outside of the great Tony Mandarich (sp), the best OT in the draft so rarely busts that it would be a bargain at #12 to 15, let alone 19.

    Sometimes you draft for need, sometimes you take the best person you have on your board for a position in the entire draft, sometimes you can get both… but at #19, that third one happens so seldom you treasure it.

    Since I expect someone to trade up to take that Wisconsin tackle ahead of both Tampa Bay and Denver, it probably won’t even be an issue, not everyone wants that second-best tackle in Alabama.

  32. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @Xantar, No disrespect bro, but Cam Robinson is a guard. Cam is slow footed in his pass sets. He struggles mightily against fast rushers, and his open field blocking leaves a lot to be desired. But he has powerful hands, and does a good once he gets his mitts on guys, especially bigger slower ones.

    Garrett Bolles out of Utah however is the best athlete at the Tackle position, good size at 6’5 300, he has great feet and solid technique, and the kid is nasty. A great combo if you ask me. Only knock on him is age, he is 24 and will be 25 mid-way through the season.

    To this I say, Andrew Whitworth was 24 when he was drafted in 2006, and is still going strong at 35.

    Tl; Dr Garrett Bolles is my favorite Tackle prospect in the draft, And I think he could thrive at either tackle spot.

  33. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    You not wrong wit that statement. I would only add ball control and winning time of possession. An absolutely cannot turn the ball over when facing them. Really looking forward to how wr stack up against them this upcoming season.

  34. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    The pats are the masters of conservative passing. All those little crossing route are just an extension of they’re run game. To h3ll wit bombs away every other play just work the ball down the field.

  35. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    And Obi looks real good by the way.

  36. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    He looks freakish.

  37. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Yeah dude, Just answer me one question.

    Why is this boy so fast ?!?!? lol

  38. Cobraboy Says:

    I’d be happy with a top OL at #19.

  39. c-spann Says:

    I see alot of guys would like to draft Obi. What do you think about Eddie Jackson in the 3rd or 4th round? He is one of the best ball hawking FS in CFB

  40. DB55 Says:

    Xandtar Says:
    March 24th, 2017 at 10:02 am
    If we get to #19 on draft day and not a single offensive lineman has been chosen, we take the best one. It is not very often you get the best college OT in the nation at such a low draft price, and outside of the great Tony Mandarich (sp), the best OT in the draft so rarely busts that it would be a bargain at #12 to 15, let alone 19
    This guy gets it! Protect the franchise! cuz it don’t matter if we draft emmitt smith if we no block we no win.

  41. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I don’t understand how the dude runs that fast. And I’ll say this I like him more than any other defensive player. 6’4 4.4 40 wit a 40in vert is crazy. Give me that guy before any DE in this class.

  42. Lord Cornelius Says:

    “The key to beating the Patriots is forcing Tom Brady into having an off day.”A

    Agree with that. Pressure Brady = key to winning usually. So in that case D-line > secondary. We could have HOF safeties but if Brady has time to throw he will dice

    Billicheck has formed all sorts of teams to win super bowls. They’ve always had a solid D-line though imo and a solid O-line moreso than anything. Sure he got rid of Chandler Jones but that was more contract related considering they spent a pick to take away a promising Kony Ealy.

  43. Capt.Tim Says:

    Fans around here have HATED The short passing game since Tony Dungy choked us to death with it.

    Now that we have Evans and Jackson, the Long routes should be very exciting.
    Jameis and the line’s problem wasnt long routes.
    It was inexperienced Wrs, who couldnt get open- and ussually ran the wrong routes

  44. Tony from Los Angeles Says:

    Been saying this on the forums for a year… The Bucs have a 23 year old stud at QB who made the offensive line look mediocre last season with his ability to extend plays rather than the abysmal unit they are. When the games were the biggest (Dallas, for example) the line was absolutely horrible. The Bucs should have been ALL IN on getting a better fit at LT – moving Smith to RT or inside. The ripple effect of those moves alone would have made the Bucs better at multiple positions by adding just one player.

    Marpet is great. Smith could be very solid to good at RT or in the interior. Other than that – the Bucs are playing around with mediocre level talent bordering on castoff level.

  45. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    A lot of these safeties videos are filled with highlights of the player playing at the line of scrimmage. Not every systems deploys that. His video you primarily see him making plays from the secondary. Also his talking looks elite, he wraps up everytime.

  46. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I hear the o line gripes but QBs like Brady,BIG Ben and Wilson weren’t asked to play like all-pros early in they’re careers they relied heavily on the presence of a capable run game. That how you protect a young QB.

  47. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    They may be mediocre but as a unit when produce the overall leading rushing attack and a rookie 4000+ yard passer in 2015 that tells me they are capable of performing at a level good enough to win in the playoffs. The Seahawks o line that won the superbowl was not elite. They performed well as a cohesive unit that year. Made it to the playoffs This past season With five new starters.

  48. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Guys I’m going to lose my mind dreaming up draft scenarios

    This would be my latest hopeful/realistic draft if we want to draft an OT to develop (I read we met with this guy). This covers every need except C:

    R1-Dalvin Cook – RB
    R2-Budda Baker – FS
    R3-Chris Godwin/Carlos Henderson/Juju Smith Schuster/Ardarius Stuart – WR
    R4-Tanoh Kpassagnon – DE
    R5-Julien Davenport – OT
    R6-Michael Roberts-TE
    R7-Shelton Gibson WR/KR or Freddie Stevenson FB (if we got Henderson in R3 then we go FB here since Henderson can be our KR)

    We’d basically be set with weapons. Roberts is a blocking TE that can compliment Brate much more than a Njoku who would have to split snaps with Brate. We’d also have our franchise RB; an elite S prospect; & a 3rd WR who can also play special teams as immediate contributors.

    Kpassagnon and Davenport can develop behind the scenes as both have great measurables but are raw; and in the 2018 draft we can focus on CB/C/DT and be a complete freak show of a team

  49. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Lord I wanna say that would be a kick @$$ draft but I’m afraid I would get tagged with nasty “homer” term so I’ll simply admire the thought from a distance.

  50. Lord Corn Says:

    I embrace homerism lol

  51. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    This would be my draft as it stands now.

    R1 – Obi Melifonwu FS/ Matchup Corner
    R2 – Chris Godwin/ Zay Jones/ Curtis Samuel/ Carlos Henderson WR
    R3 – Sameje Perine/ Kareem Hunt/ Donta Foreman (the stress fracture in his foot may cause him to fall)/ Joe Mixon? RB
    R4 – Trey Hendrickson/ Tanoh Kpassagnon DE
    R5 – Michael Roberts/ Bucky Hodges TE
    R6 – Tarik Cohen KR/PR/RB
    R7 – *Insert Developmental Back Up QB*

  52. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Blake I’d be stoked with that too

  53. USFBUC Says:

    Right now based on who the Bucs are meeting with these are their top targets:

    David Njoku, Obi Melifonwu, Chris Godwin, Marlon Mack, Julien Davenport

    Also if you look at these players and where they are being projected these are your first – fifth round selections.

  54. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Pete Prisco is 100 percent right.

  55. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Even if they draft a right tackle to replace Dotson, he will need a year of development to settle in. And Dotson hasn’t exactly been super healthy.

  56. Bald Head Says:

    First off,Paul Grouper,was our best OT , well linemen Ever, I don’t get it that we kept CONTE,over MCDOUGAL WOW!!!! HEY ANQAUN BOLDEN IS OUT THERE STILL.HE,S A DAM GOOD RED ZONE OPTION,AND HE CAN ADD SOME TOUGHNESS TO OUR WR,S

  57. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    This draft has a lot of good offensive lineman in all the rounds. My favorites are Taylor Moton from Western Michigan and he will be there in probably the 3rd. Will Holden from Vandy is good and is available in the 4th or 5th. Brad Seaton from Villanova is another guy and will be in the same range as Holden.

    As far as centers go, my favorite is Jon Toth from Kentucky. He will go somewhere between the 3rd and 4th round. Riley Sorenson is good and will be available one the 5th or 6th. And Jay Guillermo from Clemson is a late round guy with potential.

  58. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    I ain’t even gone front,I do like Perrine.

  59. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    1st- TJ Watt DE or Mike WilliamsWR
    2nd- Ahkello Witherspoon CB or Budda if he drops
    3rd- Taylor Moton OT/G or Jordan Leggett TE
    4th- Will Holden OT or Carlos Henderson WR
    5th- TJ Logan RB or Joe Mixon RB
    6th- Ryan Switzer WR/KR
    7th- Jay Guillermo C

    This would fix the majority of our holes and continue to add to our young core of guys. That at least 4 starters maybe 5 for now or the future.

  60. Joeypoppems Says:

    Oh we posting mocks?

    Round 1 – Obi Melifonwu, S
    Round2 – Chris Godwin, WR
    Round 3- Kareem Hunt, RB
    Round 4 – George Kittle, TE
    Round 5 – Keionta Davis, DE
    Round 6 – Mack Hollins, WR
    Round 7 – OL Depth


    Round 1 – Dalvin Cook, RB
    Round 2 – Jordan Willis, DE
    Round 3 – Carlos Henderson, WR
    Round 4 – Marcus Maye, S
    Round 5 – Michael Roberts, TE
    Round 6 – Mack Hollins, WR
    Round 7 – OL Depth

  61. Bucsfanman Says:

    OK, so I scrolled all the way down after reading the absolute idiocy of HFXBUX. You just can’t fix stupid I guess. HFX has only been a Buc fan since reading #alternativefacts that state Tim Tebow is now the starting QB for the Bucs!

  62. USFBUC Says:

    FunkyMonkey – I don’t think Witherspoon will go that early and I don’t see Mixon still available in the 5th round.

  63. USFBUC Says:

    Joeypoppems – I’m hoping we can take Obi or Budda in the second and Godwin or Zones in the third.

  64. Capt.Tim Says:

    The good part about being a decent team, is that all of your well thought out Mock dratfs would work, and are drafts I’d like.
    But I think our 1st pick is gonna be named Taco

  65. Bucsfanman Says:

    I’m too lazy to create a mock! So, BPA in the 1st, 2nd,3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th!!!!
    Any questions?!

  66. Joeypoppems Says:


    Budda and Obi might fall to the 2nd but I don’t think they make it to us at #50. Same thing for Zay and Godwin. Could fall to the 3rd but most likely not to #84

  67. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    USF Witherspoon is exactly what we need at corner tall, long, and fast. I dont think he will make it to us in the 3rd. So a trade situation back further in the 2nd would work. That kid can play.

    Never gonna happen but imagine drafting Budda in the 2nd and trading back into the end of the 2nd for Witherspoon. Our secondary would be set for a decade.

  68. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Yea HFXBUX spits some nonsense on here. The 1st post on this article is nuts. Makes absolutely zero sense

  69. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    And there is a decent chance Mixon doesn’t get drafted at all. Look at Ray Rice for example. I’m sure a team would sign him after the draft but him being drafted is not a given.

  70. Blake_bucsfan Says:


    while some teams have taken Mixon off their board, the general consensus is that he goes in the top 50 picks.

  71. DislocatedBucsFan Says:

    I dislike Donavan Smith because

    A) his footwork is horrific
    B) He lacks violent hands
    C) His downfield blocking is left to be desired.
    D) He’s lazy. (quits on plays while they still develop)
    E) Way way too many look out blocks.

    To hell with the PFF tribe. I have never looked at their stats nor evaluations. Smith is an average at best LT. He belongs with the Jags and many of their OL blunders.

  72. bucNation Says:

    i mean we got 3 guys on our line who were in there first 3 seasons in the nfl i’m almost positive that rarely ever happens and i think they held there own and they went up against some of the best d lines last use so those analysts can say whatever they want but i believe our o line is definetly trending in the right direction

  73. FutureBucsGM Says:

    Thankfully the bucs are aware of their inventory and will move accordingly. Licht has not forgotten the plan. Theres an overall plan for many drafts- Licht is ahead of the game collecting as much information as possible. Go earn that extension Jason!

  74. Bobby A Says:

    People like HFXBUX make it sound so easy, don’t they? If it was that easy to have a team full of Pro Bowl talent at every position, 32 teams would. You can’t just throw money around willy-nilly to solve every problem. We will have to extend players in the future such as ME, Jameis, Kwon, Cam Brate, etc. and personally, I’d like to be able to do it without having to MacGyver our way under the cap like some teams (cough Dallas cough). I think we tend to forget that our O-Line is very young and have shown promise if we are patient. My problem with many modern day fans is lack of patience. If you show a sign of being on the cusp of greatness, they want to go ALL IN to try to win right now, rather than fielding a competitive team long term, which is ABSOLUTELY STUPID when your best players are in their early 20s.