“I’m Excited Where His Mind Is Right Now”

March 1st, 2018

It’s extremely rare to find a supremely talented second-year cornerback, a first-round pick with speed in tight spaces and straight-away, to get benched on the worst defense in football.

That’s like five red flags in one right there.

And that’s what happened to the No. 11 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft last season, Vernon Hargreaves.

His coaches waved a white flag after watching get burned repeatedly on the outside. Hargreaves was moved to a part-time role inside and then was lost for the year with an injury.

Bad coaching? Likely. Wrong attitude? Likely. Confidence-issues? Likely. Just not worthy of the No. 11 overall pick? Likely.

It’s not looking good for Hargreaves’ future, but he’s just 22 years old and there is zero reason to give up on him. His rookie year was decent — for a rookie.

Yesterday at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, general manager Jason Licht dropped an interesting nugget. He said he talked to Hargreaves a lot at the close of last season and the GM said, “I’m excited where his mind is right now.”

That’s kind of an odd take. If Joe were reading between lines, Joe would assume Hargreaves’ mind wasn’t in the right place earlier in the season.

Making a list of X-factors for 2018? Put Hargreaves in your top-5.

58 Responses to ““I’m Excited Where His Mind Is Right Now””

  1. Wombat Says:

    Hopefully he can reach his potential. We need all hands on deck as this team can’t under perform like it did. Hargreaves season was about on a par with the whole team. Very promising in 2016. Very disappointing in 2017!!

    Still deciding whether to fork over the money for season tickets again, or use the money to go have fun and watch them at an away game. I hated being at the stadium last year. Injuries were a big factor, but the whole stadium experience is pretty sub par. I am 58 and getting randomly asked to show my ID is a pain in the ass. Slows the whole line down. All the servers I think are volunteers or so poorly paid that they do one game and quit.
    Why they don’t paint the row letters on the ground instead of on the seat in a little 2″ letter is crazy. Carrying food and beer you haven’t slow down and bend over and squint to see your isle…

    Sorry for the rant…. need more football!!!

  2. Bucsfanman Says:

    “I’m Excited Where His Mind Is Right Now”

    Hopefully closer to the line of scrimmage!!!

  3. Guzziep Says:

    Undersized, slow cornerback what could go wrong, 2016 was a disaster draft so far

  4. ChanEpic Says:

    👀 who coming to get me??? https://twitter.com/nfl/status/968954050497712129

    5:26 PM – Feb 28, 2018
    9,025 people are talking about this

    He’s practically begging the Bucs to bring him back!

  5. ndog Says:

    Joe your first mistake was typing this “supremely talented”.

  6. BetterBuccinBelieveIt Says:

    Licht is going to say anything to put spin on one of Licht’s highest draft picks at #11 overall in 2016, and his second biggest draft mistake yet, behind the Aguayo debacle. He was short coming out in the draft (for an outside cover guy), all the draft evaluators talked about it and they mentioned how he easily was beat over the top at Florida. ALL Gator draft picks are junk, look back at their history, and some on here want to take that Florida DT this year?!, over say Da’ron Payne from Bama?? No too mention, that the NFL is a BUSINESS, VHIII! It is your JOB to have your mind right, practice in and practice out, game in and game out. Your Job.

    Licht just has to put tremendously defiant political spin on a busted 1st round pick just 2 years ago.

    NO UF players thanks, at all.

    Go Bucs!

  7. tmaxcon Says:

    You can’t coach or fix short, slow or stupid. And vh3-BUST is all 3 of those… you can’t gamble on a 6th rd talent with pick 11 in first rd… Just another failed local feel good story. Time to move on wasting time on future pop warner coaches is senseless

  8. WutdaBucisthis Says:

    I still believe in him. Play him to his strength Damn it. He’s a press man corner. I’m good with letting Grimes walk. Sign in FA…press man CB sign SS pick up LG RT G/C depending on where Ali plays at. Throw big money at the oline.
    Draft time give me Vea @ #7…he’s gonna move up after combine. 2nd pick move up if need be with future pick grab Key. 3rd pick Penny. 4th pick and so on go BPA
    Imho I believe this team has to get younger. I still believe in RS too. Stop this soft coverage off man nonsense!! Won’t matter who we get in the Trenches, if they play this STUPID off man coverage we’ll still get whooped

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    ^^^Don’t forget SCARED!

  10. tmaxcon Says:


    Like bonzi, capt Tim and pickgrin you need to brush up on some definitions. Start with the following please

    Glory years

  11. tmaxcon Says:


    The only strength the ignorant midget possesses is celebrating after embarassing himself trying to cover even the worst nfl reciever.

  12. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Vernon Hargreaves was never benched. That’s myth. He was moved to slot. Not benched.

  13. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    And he wasn’t injured in the slot. A week later he was moved back outside, and then he got injured.

  14. tmaxcon Says:


    Really you getting more and more delusional…. seerk help the midget bum was clearly benched for his pathetic play and childish antics. He is not an NFL player

  15. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “That’s kind of an odd take. If Joe were reading between lines, Joe would assume Hargreaves’ mind wasn’t in the right place earlier in the season.”

    Here’s how I read between the lines, Joe:

    At 22 years old, Hargreaves was still under development. After the season, Koetter/Smith met with him and went over with him the areas he needed to work on to improve his development. He had a great attitude and determination when they spoke.

    He’s young. Younger than the QB who we say is still maturing as a player. Seems to me, how he responds to this past season is the test. Obviously, Koetter was happy with his response.

  16. WutdaBucisthis Says:

    Tmax…i agree that’s hella silly and embarrassing. But the kid CAN ball. Unfortunately we have a DC with whom the game has passed him by. If we make those moves i suggested…10 wins
    BTW I’m also a card carrying member of switching to a base 34 defense.
    Lol leave me alone…i can dream

  17. tmaxcon Says:

    Vh3 has never and will never BALL… Just a wasted pick.

  18. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    tmaxcon Says
    “Do even understand what a good or great player is????”

    Now that’s a funny question coming from you.

  19. Jolly Bucs Fan Says:

    I dont think vh3 will ever be worth the pick we used. But he is young and has potential to be a very good slot CB.

  20. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    And thanks for the quote.

  21. AlteredEgo Says:

    I think he’ll be OK…had the CB yips…WR’s got in his head and schooled him ….he’ll be fine

  22. tmaxcon Says:

    So when did you people discover this hidden potential was it while the little guy was being torched week in and week out or was it the multiple times he acted like a childish clown… That’s the only tape the midget has produced being burnt and acting like a child…. hard to one to the conclusion he has potential from actual game tape. He was picked 5 rds to high by a completely incompetent organization

  23. JA Says:

    Sign Talib for two and bring back Grimes for one year. I could live with that CB tandem for 2018. Draft DL, OG (if Nelson is available) and RB. Then, hope you get lucky in free agency because it’s about time they signed a player or two that gave a damn about winning. Even perineal losers get lucky once once in awhile and the Bucs are due.
    If they ink Grimes and Talib they can worry about CB next year.

  24. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “It’s extremely rare to find a supremely talented second-year cornerback, a first-round pick with speed in tight spaces and straight-away, to get benched on the worst defense in football.” So so many things wrong with that statement Joe, but surely you already know that.

    On the positive side, it DID cause tmaxcon to actually write FIVE entire comments without ONCE mentioning GMC. Perhaps you’ve given him a new target? Only time will tell.

  25. Bucsfan951 Says:

    Tmaxi: what is it that you do/did for a living?

  26. tnew Says:

    VHIII is an example of a miscast player, but one of the problems is his lack of long speed. I know Joes like to point out the “4.42” that was mistimed on the telecast at the combine but his official time was 4.50. This is respectable, far from elite especially at his size/weight combination and far from an #11 overall pick, he wasn’t even in the top 15 for cornerbacks in his draft class. While the 40 time is not the end all be all measurable, it is very important at the CB position. The problem was when he was drafted. #11 was just way too high for a player with his measurables. He was a top performer only in the vertical and broad jump for corners.

    Grimes makes it work for him due to his anticipation and confidence. VHIII just doesn’t have that and he isn’t as athletic as Grimes is on film.

    Because of his short area quickness he needs to be a nickel/slot corner. He can embrace this and hopefully excel here. Teach him how to blitz off of the edge. Putting him out in space is just not his game.

  27. DBS Says:

    That’s the tmax way. All he can do is insult and call people names. Hide behind a keyboard. Love to see him try this to players faces.

  28. tmaxcon Says:


    Never hid a day in my life snowflake… raise your standards and stop supporting garbage

  29. DBS Says:

    tmax. Let me know if you come to Tallahassee. You won’t call me snowflake to my face guarantee.

  30. darin Says:

    Lol. Funny and true.

  31. doctor_berto Says:

    Hargreaves sucks. Most Bucs fans knew this before we drafted that small, slow corner. Only Gator fans said he was good. Terrible, terrible pick.

  32. Capt.Tim Says:

    Hargreves never had the talent to excell in the NFL.
    I said it, the day we drafted him( rather angrily)
    Hargreaves is short, slow, and cant jump without slowing or stoping.

    And for those of you blaming his failures on “soft coverage”, both Mike Smith and Dirk Koetter repeatedly stated- they were not directing Hargreaves to play 10’ yards off his Man. That was his decision, and it was a problem.

    The day the Bucs drafted him- I said he would would be a bust.
    Still true.

    And yeah-he’s not Einstein, either

  33. JJBucFan Says:

    Mike Smith’s defense will kill this kids career unless he looks at film of Hargreaves in college. As an FSU grad, I don’t think he had good games against us but he was unbelievable against most everyone else. He is a bump and run guy. There isn’t a DB in this league that play 10-15 yards off the line and be considered a good corner. Maybe 5-7 but not 10-15, especially on 3rd and 4. This defense is Lovie 2.0 and was super successful in the late 90’s early 2000’s. However the game has passed this guy by.

    Dirk, please look at film of Jameis at FSU as well. Since Jimbo is all about money, I’m sure you could buy his playbook from him for the right price. No one gots to know brother. You will look like the “guru” you claim to be for turning Jameis’ around.

  34. Pickgrin Says:

    I look for Vernon to have a nice bounce back year in 2018.

    VH3 HAS the talent to be a successful starting CB in this league. But his head was obviously not in the right place last year.

  35. Mike Johnson Says:

    Here comes the Jhizz..Don’t beleive the hype. Give us a winner on the field.

  36. Evolvingbucfan Says:

    was the best natural talent corner coming into the draft, covered the best of the best, how could you ignore that? has more upside to him if he can get his mindset right, not sure what it is but hopes he fixes it.


  37. Eric Says:

    Why was his head in the wrong place last year?

  38. Chris in WA Says:

    I’ve heard some rumors that we didn’t do any favors to VH3 drafting a guy local to Tampa. Lots of family and friends with sob stories asking for money and placing a ton of stress on him off the field. I doubt he would be struggling as much on any other team. Would explain why his head “isn’t in the right place”

  39. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    Another miserable Licht personnel move to go along with his 5 years, licht has no rhyme or reason for anything he has done in building this franchise

  40. ChanEpic Says:

    Chris in WA – If what you say is true, it points to what I consider the biggest need this org has. LEADERSHIP. LEADERSHIP. LEADERSHIP. Sorely lacking at OBP.

  41. 813bucboi Says:

    its easy to see he was playing in a system that highlighted his weakness……VHG is a man press CB…..

    people talking about no more UF players……lol….go hide under a rock somewhere…..Keanu neal has been to 2 pro bowls in 2 season….brian poole is a baller…..bryan cox put a ton of pressure on qbs this year…….

    screw vita vea……if chubb and nelson are gone trade down and draft taven bryan…..

    VHG will be alright……but he’s in the same boat as Winston and the staff……

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!!

  42. derrickbrooksforGM Says:

    when you cant rush the passer and your co-worker is brent grimes you’re gonna get roasted, I don’t care who you are. Smitty left this this young man out to dry.

  43. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Any argument that uses his size / speed / athleticism / etc as a reason for his failure is flawed.

    If you look up the top 20-30 CBs in the NFL right now his size / athleticism is on par with at least 1/3 of them. Grimes is shorter and has less of a vert and isn’t any faster for example per his combine scores.

    And for every CB that is 1 or 2″ taller than VHIII; he typically had a better vert by more than the height advantage. 39″ vert when the average CB vert in the combine was like 35″ the last few years.

    ANd he’s had games where he put it together and played well. Just needs to get his head right. Still a huge unkown because of this but it has nothing to do with his abilities.

    Every draft analyst had him as a round 1 lock and most had him as the best CB beyond Ramsey.. That doesn’t happen with guys who don’t have talent / athleticism / ability

  44. 813bucboi Says:

    derrickbrooksforGM Says:
    March 1st, 2018 at 11:06 am
    when you cant rush the passer and your co-worker is brent grimes you’re gonna get roasted, I don’t care who you are. Smitty left this this young man out to dry.


    I wish VHG would’ve pulled a Winston and ignored smitty and his soft coverage….VHG should’ve took matters into his own hands and said im playing man press whether smitty likes it or not…..

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!!

  45. JJBucFan Says:

    813- as I stated I am an FSU grad, I would take a team full of Gators/Noles/Canes. The best athletes in the country. Problem is-their college coaches and position coaches can make adjustments to get the best out of their players, whereas our professional coaches cannot so they just kill their confidence by not playing them to their strengths. I can never understand why we don’t go for “high motor”, effort guys. Just the guys with maybe more talent. The saying goes “hard work beats talent unless talent works hard”. We are getting talent that doesn’t work hard- so lets try to get the guys that will out work talent- guys like Taven Bryan, Quentin Nelson. I was screaming last year to bring in Campbell, bring in Chris Long and Connor Barwin- these are effort guys/motor guys. Enough with these lazy wastes of talent!

  46. Tbbucs3 Says:


    Tmax is an internet troll for a living.

  47. 813bucboi Says:



    I like high motor guys too!!!!….that’s why I was pissed when we selected j.evans instead of demarcus walker…..time will tell who’s better but he was a need that was talented good character and played with a high motor…..

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!!…..GO BUCS!!!!!

  48. JJBucFan Says:

    I was pissed too but only because we needed DE more than a Safety. I was pleasantly surprised by the end of the year with J Evans. Hopefully Mike Smith won’t ruin him, LOL

  49. Brandon Says:

    It’s never a good idea to draft a slower CB that is also smaller in the 1st round. Guys like that are a dime a dozen… sometimes they work out great… especially in round 3… like Ronde Barber… but you don’t draft slower smaller CBs in round 1 no matter how great their college tape LOOKs. Remember, on Saturdays,these guys are playing mostly against guys that WON’T be playing on Sundays.

  50. firethecannons Says:

    mark the date and time:
    Tmax is right about vh3

    Licht should get Apple once he is cut and make him and vh3 compete, maybe one of them will grab the bull by the balls so to speak

  51. JimmyJack Says:

    Most of the experts will tell you to give a drafted player three years. There’s a reason they say three.

    VHIII hasn’t proven much worth yet but I’m not closing the door on him just yet. Last year is done with and he is still on the team. What’s wrong with giving him a training camp, seein* how h3 looks in preseason games and see if he earns a gig?

    I’ll give him a third year before calling him a bust.

  52. BringBucsBack Says:

    Hargreaves, as you all must remember, was the consensus (save for the Giants) highest rated CB coming out of his draft class. And what he lacked in height, he was going to make up with his ”leaps”. His lack of speed would be compensated for by his fine footwork and the fluidity of his hips. Remember?

    It’s still early and I haven’t given up on him because of his age but, did everyone scout him incorrectly or just the Bucs? (Dumb question, yeah I know.)

    Yes, I too don’t believe that his current coaches are using or teaching him properly.

    I hated passing up the bong-hitting LT but, at least he is playing and at a premium position.

  53. JimmyJack Says:

    Brandon…..Correct me if I’m wrong but I seem to remember Vernon having a college track record of playing well against legit NFL receiver. Wanna say Kelvin Benjamin and Amari Cooper were a few of the examples

  54. 813bucboi Says:


    huge gator fan here…..

    he played well vs k.benjamin….
    played well vs rashard greene…..
    played well vs l.treadwell….
    played well vs Jordan Matthews….
    played well vs beckham…..
    played well vs j.landry….

    sorry to say but a.cooper beat him like a drum…..lol…..

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!

  55. JimmyJack Says:

    813…..haha. Guess that’s why I remember Coopers name.

    So he’s proven that he possesses the talent worthy of drafting him since he could guard high lever receivers…….Its my opinion that you have to really work hard both on and off the practice field to be able to compete in the NFL. The talent will get you drafted and that’s it. When I see a guy like Hargreaves falter the first thing I assume is the guy just isn’t working hard enough.

    This talk about measurable success is all just nonsense. If you think a guy can’t play because of a forty yard dash time or wingspan or height you just don’t know sports.

  56. AKick'nTheBucNuts Says:

    “I’m excited where his mind is right now.”

    I would much rather hear…”I’m excited by his lock-down performance in all our games.”

  57. Reach87 Says:

    Hargreaves is not a bust, is still maturing and if healthy will make plays for us this year. He has the skills. Needs coaching help and playing time.

  58. feelthepewterpower Says:

    Corner is o e of the hardest positions in nfl, and it is made harder by our scheme (playing soft coverage with no pass rush) and the rule changes regarding defesnive contact. Keep the faith.