“You Can’t Say That That’s Great Depth”

July 1st, 2017

A defensive year off for Josh Robinson

It’s rare to get a clean, in-your-face reality check from the Buccaneers’ official website.

No knock on the good folks reporting and analyzing there. They’re paid to put a shiny Bucs glow on everything — even when it’s difficult. And they do a great job with that.

That’s why it’s noteworthy to Joe that veteran Bucs house reporter/analyst Scott Smith put a heartfelt spotlight on Tampa Bay’s questionable depth at cornerback.

In the recent edition of Buccaneers Insider, Smith noted that second-year cornerback Ryan Smith, who was an experiment at safety last season, has not played a defensive snap in the NFL. And he’s the lead guy right now to back up outside cornerback Vernon Hargreaves or Brent Grimes if they were to go down.

Veteran Josh Robinson? He didn’t play a defensive snap for the Bucs last year, either.

“You can’t say that that’s great depth,” Scott Smith said.

(Joe will also note Bucs coaches thought Alterraun Verner was a better corner than Robinson and now Verner cant’ find a job.)

Smith also made the broader point that experience is really what makes depth. He pointed to the Tampa Bay offensive line as a great example. And Joe wholeheartedly agrees.

Of course, at corner the Bucs also have undrafted Hey Jude Adjei-Barimah at cornerback, a second-year man returning from a four-game drug suspension and an injury. There’s also undrafted second-year man Javien Elliott. And there’s newcomer, seasoned veteran Robert “Bobby Mac” McClain.

Joe is hopeful about the depth at cornerback, but the thought is churning Joe’s stomach a bit on this Saturday. Or perhaps that’s just Joe’s fourth hot dog and seventh beer?

14 Responses to ““You Can’t Say That That’s Great Depth””

  1. Not there yet Says:

    Uh yes you can say that’s great depth. Everyone talks about depth as if the guy sitting behind a starter is always of the same quality or experience. Reality is it’s rare but compare our corners to say New Orleans or Carolina last year I’ll take our roster. Atlanta only has one or two corners, could anyone say if they went down they would be fine? We have young quality players and vets so we’ll be fine. Compared to the last few years or depth at corner and defensive line is light years ahead

  2. BucEmUp Says:

    Ive been saying for years when you refuse to allow your corners to play physical up on the line they’re going to give up a ton of short underneath routes. I understand that it does expose the threat of getting burned deep when you do that….but playing so predictable with our db’s makes me sick to my stomach. At least mix it up a little. Let the corners throw off the timing within that first five yards of the line of scrimmage and it will help the blitz and pass rush on this plays as well. Just to damn vanilla. I agree the depth at the position is scary, but so is the way the position is exposed every Sunday by soft coverage. I just wish they would grow some balls and jam the guy at the line for a change!!!!!!!

  3. BringBucsBack Says:

    The corners seem as tenuous as the o-line to me. All is fine, if all is fine. One injury may be catastrophic to both positions. Two prime examples why the Licht statue erecting (calm down boys) should be postponed.

    Buc em up, I second your request for more jam!

  4. Lamarcus Says:

    3rd on the request for more jam. Tired of year in and out our corners get burned.

  5. Defense Rules Says:

    Reality for most teams IMO is that depth is almost always an iffy thing. Have seen quite a few instances over the years where a player subs for a starter, then never relinquishes the position … Keith Tandy would be a decent example. Unfortunately have seen many more instances where the backup gets roasted time & time again … and usually disappears the next year. Personally I think the Bucs secondary as a whole (including 2nd & 3rd teamers) is ‘adequate’ … IF the DLine & LBs do their jobs. IF not, I shudder to think what this year will be like.

  6. The Buc Realist Says:

    A year and 3 months ago, we all were saying that there was no one in the secondary!!!! So in that short amount of time to be only complaining about “depth” is a huge upgrade!!!!!!!!!

    And for those asking for more “jam” at the line, do you really think we have the personnel for that? Not only will Grimes get beat physically beat, but your going to get the old veteran hurt!!!!!! If you say that we need the personnel to do that, I would agree with that.

  7. Atlbuc28 Says:

    Remember when we hardly got any kind of good articles out of Bucs.com…. I remember having to pay to get inside stuff about the Bucs… I have said this before… But damn…. The last couple years , then the jump this year from your site Joes…. Not just the Amazing info… The amount of posters that have real insightful and passionate responses … has made a big impact on Buccaneers reporting … as fare as depth .. the Sterling kid that went to the saints… I kinda thought that was a mistake letting him get away…. I could be totally wrong tho..

  8. Dewey Selmon Says:

    If you jam the WR’s you won’t get beat deep if there is any pressure from the DL and Spence/Smith. I don’t like cb’s playing 10 yards off the ball either. But when teams are lining up 4 wide plus a monster TE you can’t take the chance. 4 wide and a monster TE. sounds like us. lol

  9. Pickgrin Says:

    Our CB position is in great shape if you compare where we are at now – to just 18 months ago.

    Hey Jude (who is a 3rd year player Joe – not 2nd) started 7 games outside for the Bucs in 2015. Now he is our 4th CB!

    Licht turned a major weakness into a minor strength in just 1 year. Paid FA pro bowler Grimes, drafted Hargreaves 1st round, drafted Ryan Smith 4th round. That’s our top 3 guys now.

    We haven’t seen Ryan Smith play yet which is largely responsible for the questioning of our CB “depth”. And that’s understandable. But if Ryan Smith develops and plays as advertised (according to coach accounts) then we are in decent shape because I have no problem with Hey Jude and Javien Elliot representing our 4th and 5th spots based on what I saw them do last year in spot duty along with expected development.

  10. Mike Says:

    Grimes #1 in NFL for broken up passes-
    Old or not- thought he played great

    We do need more depth

  11. Mike Says:

    Bring back Revis- how bad could he be?
    The commentators and fans live in this dense fog about great players being washed up- just a twisted group think- lemming mentality.
    Watch Adrian Peterson end up crushing it. We couldn’t bring him in?
    Is Jaquiz Rogers A better second option than AD?

    Evil is good
    Good is evil

    The world we live in

  12. USFBUC Says:

    Our depth is slowly improving. If we continue to draft like we have the last few years we will have one of the best rosters in the NFL in the next few years. OL is coming along nicely, WR and TE are set of Godwin and Howard pan out, and we have one of the best young QBs. I expect that next year’s draft will be heavy on defense with probably an OL thrown in there too.

  13. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Realist nailed it.

  14. LongSeason Says:

    Hi Artificial Joes. Cornerback may be a priority for roster moves (release and sign) when roster cuts happen. I just hope we don’t have artificial depth at corner (corner of Burn and Toast).