How Valuable Is Donovan Smith?

June 10th, 2017

It’s another take from JoeBucsFan Saturday columnist Gil Arcia

If I were to ask you to name your Top 10 Bucs players right now, I’m sure there’d be a mixed bag of opinions. That’s fine.

I think it’s fair to say Jameis Winston, Mike Evans, Gerald McCoy, Lavonte David and DeSean Jackson are easily in the top 5. Now remove Winston and who lands on that list?

The staff over at Sports Illustrated polled themselves to rank the Top 10 players (excluding quarterbacks) on each NFC South team, and when it came to the Buccaneers, it was rather interesting.

Donovan Smith, who many fans are not fond of, was in the top 5 along with running back Doug Martin. David was sixth while rookie tight end O.J. Howard and defensive end Robert Ayers were tied for ninth.

You can read the lists here.

Not to take anything away from anyone, but there are questionable names there, like Smith in the Top 5 candidate with Martin, as well as David being out of it, etc.

I mean, guys like Ali Marpet and Brent Grimes didn’t make the list. They were the “honorable mention” types, with Grimes only receiving one vote. Seriously? That’ll surely piss off Miko.

The SI post at least explains the reasoning behind Smith’s ranking. The defense of him being ranked fourth is that he will be a crucial piece to the offense. And if the offense falters, then there is “nowhere else” to point the finger other than at Smith. So he was ranked there due to importance.

Opinions always vary. However, this one from SI can be questioned many different ways.

21 Responses to “How Valuable Is Donovan Smith?”

  1. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    53 guys on a team…46 dressing out on Sunday…I just don’t think five guys can carry a football team. This is not the NBA where it used to be 2 major stars got you over…since the Warriors you might need 4 but it’s not like that in the NFL.

    QB of course is the special position and it all starts there. But after that there are just too many guys contributing to limit lists to five.

    Football is the ultimate team sport. Sometimes a great player can be made to look poor because another teammate didn’t do his job leaving the great player in a hopeless situation.

    It’s all interlocking…Brent Grimes and VHG’s years will have a lot to do with the success or failure of our pass rush. And our pass rush will depend on VHG and Grimes to hopefully come up with some coverage sacks.

    It all has to work together…I can’t even force my mind to imagine which of these guys are more important than others. Obviously some players are more important but I think they break down into much larger groups than just five.
    We have a lot more critical players than five if we want to reach Minny.

  2. InJameisWeTrust Says:

    My top 5 would not include djax who has yet to play a snap in Pewter

  3. duthsty rhothdes Says:

    well said st pete, but whomever made this list is clueless and goes to the point the bucs do not have any household names nor star power, i mean LVD was 6th? i feel he may have been infected by lovie/GMC the past few years but guy was playing with his hair on fire under schiano

  4. Kalind Says:

    Jameis, GMC, ME13, Kwon, Lavonte, Grimes, DSmith, Marpet, Spence, OJ. If you keep out Jameis (for some reason) then Ayers gets in.

    Hon Mentions: DJax, Brate, Hargreaves

  5. Kalind Says:

    You know. If DJax was showing up to OTAs, and just killin people? Then maybe he gets in. But right now I’m just kinda ‘meh’ on him. Not sure why there’s so much hype around him. He runs fast? Catches 45 passes a year? ::bewildered::

  6. Fsuking Says:

    You are confusing a list of the 10 most important players with a top 10. Nobody is trying to say that Donovan Smith is a top 10 player on the bucs, only that his success is critical to the success of our team. A top 10 would look a lot different

  7. uckinator Says:

    Sapp said, he’d show up at volunteer practices to respect the Coach. Evidently, this is something Desean Jackson isn’t capable of.

  8. Capt.Tim Says:

    Replace Brent grimes for VH3, And Cameron Brate for Doug Martin,
    And I’m good with it.

  9. CLOS Says:

    M. Evans, G. McCoy, L. David, K. Alexander, and B. Grimes . Not that hard lol

  10. martinii Says:

    Read the list, agree with comments above. 2 guys weren’t on team, another couple injured. Like Stpete says 48 of 53 suit-up and they all are important if called into action. I think one of the most important guys is the PK. he will be the highest scorer and in close games will determine W or L. This is one of those stories we ponder until training camp to pass the time.

  11. martinii Says:


  12. LakeLandBuc Says:

    It says the 10 most Important players on each team. And the LT is one of the most important player on every team. The LT position is one of the most important positions on a team.

  13. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Not that hard CLOS???? You left off the best and most important player on your list. I guess it is too hard for you!

  14. Pickgrin Says:

    10 most “important” Buccaneers – which in my interpretation means its “important” that they do their job well this year and not get injured…

    1. Winston
    2. Kwon
    3. Evans
    4. GMC
    5. Grimes
    6. D. Smith
    7. L. David
    8. Marpet
    9. Ayers
    10. Sweezy

    Notice that 5 of the 10 I chose are Oline/Dline. It all starts up front. If Oline and Dline play well this year – the Buccaneers will be very hard to beat.

  15. Bill Says:

    Personally, I’d define this list by asking myself: which player am I most afraid of losing (given the current roster).


  16. Defense Rules Says:

    If the question is ‘How valuable is Donovan Smith?” the answer has to be ‘Extremely valuable’. If he goes down, who steps in? Apparently Pamphile, with relatively little experience protecting Jameis’ blind side. Of course, then we’d have to plug someone in for Pamphile … ah yes, the Domino Effect.

    If the question however is “Who are the most valuable players on the Bucs?” I’d personally put Jameis at the top of the list, but then at least 28 other players (starters, key rotational players & 3 Special teams). If any of them is a ‘weak link’ opposing teams will smell blood & capitalize on that weakness all they can. Like StPete wrote at the start, it takes a lot more than a few players to win nowadays in the NFL. It takes a T-E-A-M.

  17. NFLNut Says:


    DJax and Lavonte aren’t even ahead of GMC, Hargreaves, Donovan … or OJ Howard (as he will block and pass catch) in my book.

  18. Jeremy Says:

    Donovan smith hasn’t missed a game. I don’t think he missed a snap last year. The dude was only in his second year. So maybe he is not Joe Thomas… but the kid is solid and gets the job done week in and week out

  19. Fred E. Bucs Says:

    smh. Nope, Smith isn’t Top 10, not even sure he’s Top 20. But just goes to show what out-of-town media produce. Of course, our own local rag is typically bad, so at least we have the JBF to do the heavy lifting.

  20. pete Says:

    M Evans
    D Smith

  21. Bucamania Says: