Vea Needs To Shine Quickly

July 13th, 2018

Short learning curve. (Photo courtesy of

A lot of Bucs fans believe that just because Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht brought in a lot of names to play defense, that the defense has been magically fixed.

Hold on, pilgrim.

With potentially a rookie starting at corner opposite Brent Grimes, the rookie will need to play like a seasoned pro in September facing Drew Brees, Carson Wentz (possibly), Ben Roethlisberger and talented young Mitch Trubisky.

But if a rookie is indeed playing that position, he won’t be the only one that will have to play like a Pro Bowler right off the bat.

Enter first-round pick Vita Vea. If he is as good as advertised, Jenna Laine of ESPN believes the defense could have a tremendous bounce back season.

The Bucs already know what they have in six-time Pro Bowler Gerald McCoy. But Vea’s punishing 6-foot-4, 347-pound frame and explosiveness could be their biggest asset. It can help free up McCoy to get into the backfield, and he can do his own share of the tormenting with Drew Brees, Matt Ryan, Cam Newton, Ben Roethlisberger, Carson Wentz, Eli Manning, Joe Flacco, Jimmy Garoppolo and Dak Prescott on the schedule. The Bucs also face some of the league’s top running backs — Alvin Kamara, Mark Ingram, Ezekiel Elliott, Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman.

Joe doesn’t think the defensive line will have to play good, it will have to be dominant to cover for a rookie corner.

Vea’s ability to clog the middle and stop the run will go a long way toward the Bucs manufacturing a pass rush.

41 Responses to “Vea Needs To Shine Quickly”

  1. stpetebucsfan Says:

    Agree totally with your observations Joe.

    My fear is that our statistic obsessed society will focus on numbers and end up missing what Vea really contributes to the overall effort. Jenna made some good points in that area.

    Vea brings that fun loving Tongan personality as well. He’ll be easy to cheer for.

  2. Pete I Says:

    Needs to shine in a big way.

  3. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I’m with ya, except I believe they won’t start a rookie corner from the beginning of the season unless he really impresses them in camp.

    I think it with be Grimes, VHIII, and Smith in the beginning.

    It will be the third year at corner for VHIII, and that is the year players take the biggest leap forward. It will be Smith’s second year at corner, but his third overall.

    I believe the Bucs are hoping one or both will step up so that the rookie can be developed to replace Grimes next year.

  4. AlteredEgo Says:

    The roster is stronger going into the 2018 season than it was finishing the 2017…even with Mr McGoo not starting the first 3 games

  5. 813bucboi Says:

    dirk has to coach at a “coach of the year” type level in 2018!!!!!!


  6. The Buc Realist Says:

    This and last year’s first round draft pick will pay dividends for the Bucs for years to come!!!! Good to see a roster finally start to get tru depth!!!!! Its still hard to believe that the sheep wanted a strong safety and a rb that lasted 3 games instead!!!!!!!!

    Keep fixing the “real” problem, the roster!!!!!!!

  7. miken Says:

    Should have stayed at pick 8 and taken rosen. The d line is in great shape and ready to dominate.

  8. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    I think Carlton Davis going to start from week 1, but has been stated on this site, the NFL network and screamed by Ian Beckles, NFL rookie DL do not play well their rookie year because th vet OL are just too crafty and smarter than the rookies, not sure what lichts idea is with all the DL except depth which is always good but he flat out ignored the OL on the right side that is going to get Fitz and whoever else killed………..miken, i am kinda with you on the rosen pick esp how in the world could licht and the team not know what jameis had done by that point and the fallout from it…thats why the bucs are 5-11 poor management in the organization

  9. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    You would turn down 2 2nd round picks to move back a few spots in the first? Interesting

    The fallout is a 3 game suspension. Pretty sure drafting Rosen and not picking up the extra draft picks would be an overreaction to a 3 game suspension

  10. miken Says:

    @west for the best qb in the draft with suspension looming, yes and then figured a way to trade up and get Davis. Guessing the Bucs didn’t know how serious the Jameis situation was.

  11. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    It’s amazing you’re not an nfl gm.
    The best qb in the draft without playing a single game. That’s impressive

  12. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I’m going to surprise many by predicting that our outside corners will be Grimes and VH3…..and the rooking who starts will be MJ Stewart at nickel.

    As for Vea……I believe he will start strong….but we have Beau Allen and Vinny Curry on the roster before we drafted him for a good reason…..

    Our depth on the Dline is the best it’s been in many years…..Just think, Gholston is our weakest Dlineman……had it not been for his guaranteed large contract…he may not have even made this team.

  13. Bucsfanman Says:

    Coaching is going to play a HUUUUGE part in the success of this defense. If the d-line gets pressure, look for teams to throw quick routes to mitigate. Our corners better be prepared to get tested.
    How do we put our players in position to succeed? Simple, coaching.

    I hope you guys are right with regards to VHIII. If he’s able to contribute, that is a huge bonus.

  14. stpetebucsfan Says:


    Certainly can’t disagree with your post because it is the conventiona wisdom.

    Perhaps it’s a big overstated though. Joey Bosa got 10.5 sacks his rookie year…12.5 last year. One could argue his position requires more finesse and moves than a beast who is charged with clogging up the middle.

    BTW…I’m a huge Noah Spence guy and I don’t think he gets his props.
    In his rookie year he was well on his way to keeping up with his former OSU teammate…then of course the injury. Still with a mangled wing he still produced 5.5 sack showing not only promise but some real ‘nads playing hurt.

    Vea doesn’t need to get sacks. If he nullifies the other teams run game, get his share of double teams..and gets some penetration to force the middle…JPP…Noah and GMC could end up really feasting.

  15. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    GMC gonna finally be forced to step up without any guaranteed $ left
    If the bucs sh!t the bed this year, bye bye

  16. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    St. Pete right on….I listen to Bucky Brooks & DJ podcast and they think that Bosa and his younger brother who is at OSU now are 2 of the most dominat DL/DE they have ever seen, cannot stand OSU, but those 2 have tremendous bloodlines and wealthy family to be able to train and eat and be top 5 NFLers as Joey Bosa is…….i am with you on Noah Spence, I think injuries and others may have slowed him down… know bosa, spence and zeke elliot had some partying issues at OSU, hopefully Spence is just injury related and will come back…..bosa also has great grandfather who was the boss of the chicago outfit so bosa has some tough killer instinct in his bloodline….good & bad of the bucs and this season sucking is the bucs will have a shot at getting Nick Bosa from OSU with a top 5 pick

  17. budbuc Says:

    @ stpete, I hope your right. It would be nice to see the D actually put some pressure on opposing QB’s this season… Especially the first Three weeks!

  18. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    @west…..its not the 3 game suspension its the pattern of the type of thing and then the lieing to cover it up and how that mirrors his inconsistent play on the field from the eating Ws to that green bay fumble, which was ridiculous among others, like falling down and throwing the ball 50 yards staright up in the air? those are just plays that you take the 7 yard sack and play another down, you shouldnt be shaking your head on the franchise qb when he does these dumb things….i hear ya on 3 ghame suspension but its WAY more than that and hopefully you can see that

  19. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    Trust me, I shake my head 2-3 times a game from the mistakes as well, but to give up on him for a few bonehead plays from a young qb doesn’t make sense.
    As far as I know his “lie” was simply the Uber ride earlier that night with Darby and banks, which happened, so wasn’t really a lie. He may be lying about not remembering the second ride by himself, but the 22yo kid was blackout drunk, so who knows what he remembers or not. I’m not saying it’s acceptable behavior for the face of a franchise, just not sure it’s enough to warrant replacing him

  20. jmarkbuc Says:

    “but the 22yo kid was blackout drunk,”

    Says who? So tired of hearing that drivel.

  21. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    Says him and witnesses at the party (allegedly)
    Who said he wasn’t?

  22. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    Again I supported Jameis and welcomed him as the bucs qb to go the next level, and excused the publix incident, the table thing, and bb gun as BS college things and being young, heck even the thing with the girl at FSU, i chalked that up to she had buyers remorse after what she partaked in……..BUT then to do that to an innocent uber driver….NAW ……have been in 100s of ubers in various states of inebriation and NEVER thought of touching the driver….couple that with the crap on teh field and the lattimore incident and the panthers suit incident….i just feel its time to move on from koetter, licht and jameis and start witha a real new day in tampa…

  23. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    That’s all valid, but the glazers gave the braintrust one more year. Your wish will come true if 2018 is as bad as 2017

  24. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    …have u been in an Uber as a young millionaire qb? I think it’s possible she may have been leading him on looking for a fat tip. I think it’s possible he was so drunk that the fat tip never came, and she then became offended and notified Uber of the incident. May not be as black and white as you think.

  25. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    As a bartender I’m very familiar with drunk guys hitting on service industry and them going along with it looking for the tip. I imagine in a more secluded setting with a millionaire there’s no telling what someone will go through with looking for $

  26. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    Maybe the police weren’t called because she felt somewhat responsible

  27. jmarkbuc Says:


    “Says him and witnesses at the party (allegedly)”

    Got a link?

    I think we’ve all heard that he was drunk and unruly, so his buds put him in an uber.

  28. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    Do u really need a link to find him saying he didn’t remember because of alcohol?

  29. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    That’s called blacking out, moron

  30. jmarkbuc Says:

    I’ve read as much as anyone about JW’s transgressions, really don’t recall him mentioning he didn’t remember. As a matter of fact the only thing I’ve heard JW say about alcohol is that he was removing it from his life.

  31. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    west, being a millionaire has nothing to do with this, if you have money that means you can touch your uber driver or whoever you want???? WTF, sounds like a great alibi for a lawyer to use, “Im rich so she wanted it.”

  32. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    I read an article on dead spin saying that Jameis told the nfl he didn’t do it, but if he did he didn’t remember. I’ll try to find the link

  33. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    All I said was the circumstances aren’t black and white, and people who work for tips may put in a little extra work for a bigger tip. I used the word perhaps and maybe quite a bit

  34. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    I Also said allegedly, kinda hints at it might not be exactly true. Most of his detractors tend to leave that word out while blasting him.

  35. WestminsterCoBucsFan Says:

    The article is titled jameis made a deal with the nfl

  36. Not there yet Says:

    He’ll shine quickly but hopefully he’s playing backup early and eventually begins to steal more reps. Yes I want him to be the future but him starting simply means licht threw away money in free agency again. I prefer free agents we signed keep him in a limited role until he learns the NFL game. He better not be better than this free agent d tackles for lichts job sake

  37. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Saints, Falcons and Panthers all top 10 in NFC in stopping the run
    Eagles led league in stopping the run
    Stopping the run leads to more interceptions
    Licht knows this – that’s why Bucs improved physicality on D

  38. Pryda... sec147 Says:

    I think Vea is going to take some time to develop but he will have an impactful rookie season I just hope like I hope for everyone is to be healthy just that alone goes a long way.

  39. ManzielMadness Says:

    DLineman usually take 3 years to develop, unless their name is Aaron Donald.

  40. JimmyJack Says:

    Yeah you could beat those QBs by getting probowl type play from your secondary. The best way to beat them is by getting pressure. I have seen both Ben and Bress fold under pressure. Haven’t seen Wentz play with much pressure but I’m sure he’s not superhuman.

    Or maybe we don’t need probowl efforts from either unit if both can just play solid football.

    Then again, worrying about the QBs kinda implys that we can stop the run.

  41. jmarkbuc Says:


    Found your article

    First, Winston still denies it, despite the league’s investigation finding otherwise. Second, Winston told the league that even if he did do it, he doesn’t remember doing it because he was too drunk. Third, and most important to the NFL, Winston promised not to appeal his suspension.

    Winston was forced to admit to drinking, which he blamed the entire incident on (but which he also maintains didn’t happen; I’m not sure how that works, exactly)

    So props to you, it appears (allegedly) that he did say that, however the rest of his statement is pretty contradictory. Clearly I don’t think he was “blackout” drunk, it’s just Jameis saying whatever he has too, just like always.