“Your Franchise Left Tackle”

August 21st, 2018

Strong praise.

In the words of a former Tampa Bay great, the Bucs already have their left tackle for years to come.

And that same left tackle currently starts at left tackle for the Bucs. That would be Donovan Smith.

Those words come from Ronde Barber.

During the Bucs’ win over the Titans on Saturday night, Barber, who is the Bucs’ preseason television analyst, got on the subject of Smith. The former Bucs great cornerback had interesting words. He referred to Smith as “your franchise left tackle” and added, “in my mind, a pretty good football player.”

Why does Joe put so much stock into Barber’s words?

Well, Barber is a fixture at One Buc Palace. He may be there more than Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks combined. Barber, who is a game analyst for FOX during the regular season, is also a member of what Joe refers to as Jason Licht’s kitchen cabinet.

Barber and the Bucs’ AC/DC-loving general manager are tight and the two often confer together at — and away from — One Buc Palace. It doesn’t take a calculus major to deduce where much of what Barber says about players’ or coaches’ futures comes from.

Smith, in three seasons has only missed one half of football and never missed a start. He is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. Sure sounds like from what Barber said that the Bucs have every intention of bringing Smith back with a fat contract.

23 Responses to ““Your Franchise Left Tackle””

  1. Wright Says:

    Kwon continues to look worse and worse every game. With some big signings coming up next season between Marpet, Smith, and Kwon, its looking more and more likely, IMO, that Kwon won’t be a Buccaneer for much longer.

  2. BigPoppaBuc Says:

    When he’s good he’s very good. When he’s bad, Winston winds up with a bum shoulder. Life of an NFL left tackle.

  3. gbobucsfan Says:

    Honest question…..Has Ronde ever said anything negative about a (Bucs) player?

  4. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Donovan “Conte” Smith

  5. m0j0 Says:

    Smith is a pretty good LT, but after seeing Spence run circles around him in practice, it’s pretty obvious he still needs help with speed rushers.

  6. 813bucboi Says:

    I like d.smith…..I think he has deserved to be our franchise LT….he’s above average imo….love his run blocking…..

    in regards to kwon, just another player that has regressed under this coaching staff….surprise surprise…..


  7. BradentonBucFan Says:

    Rick Stroud is reporting he just got rolled up and has a knee injury. That is not good.

  8. 813bucboi Says:


    yeah, he’s a professional….he’s been critical of the bucs defense(who hasn’t), run game and red zone offense…..he just doesn’t throw players or coaches under the bus…..


  9. Bucwheat Says:

    Poorly timed article as our guy DS just got rolled up on in practice and limped off the field…

  10. Defense Rules Says:

    Ronde is spot on about Donovan Smith … he’s a lock to be re-signed just like Marpet is (and just like Mike Evans was). There’s a lot to be said for home-grown talent, and building through the draft means you have to reward those young players who perform. Donald Penn got consistently better with age IMO. So will Donovan (Marpet’s already a beast).

    Jameis will get another contract (probably franchise-tagged for 2 years running IMO), so … that leaves Kwon as the most likely ‘odd-man-out’ for that draft group. Unless LVD has a mediocre season & Kwon does well, then David would be more at risk than Kwon would be (hey, Bucs have to free up $$$ to re-sign at least 3 from that draft class). Still think Kwon isn’t the Mike that we need, but that his skillset fits perfectly outside. And having him available as a backup MLB if the need arises isn’t a bad thing.

  11. webster Says:

    Those who hate on smith do not know what they are talking about. I will not provide a link out of respect for joe’s site but there is a local outfit that addressed signing of smith. The article mentioned there are 14 Lts that makes at least 10 mil and have not even made the pro bowl. Prime example is nate solder is the highest paid LT at about 16 mil and no prow bowl. Many are making about 13 mil. I say all of this to say smith will be getting his 10-14 mil. That is the going rate with or without a pro bowl.

  12. webster Says:

    Oh and btw there are many on that list of 14 you would not take over smith.

  13. Phil Says:

    As soon as you write about him he goes down.

  14. D-Rome Says:

    I agree with you, Wright. I love Kwon’s passion and hard-nosed play but he may end up being the odd man out.

  15. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    D Smith is average at best LT and that his is ceiling, Licht could have drafted a franchise LT but drafted a corner that will be waived next year, then you would have had Smith at RT and LT at LT

  16. AmericasEnabler Says:

    Wright Says:
    August 21st, 2018 at 9:30 am
    Kwon continues to look worse and worse every game. With some big signings coming up next season between Marpet, Smith, and Kwon, its looking more and more likely, IMO, that Kwon won’t be a Buccaneer for much longer.

    ^^^Very well said. I’ve been beating this drum for years. Kwon is very good in pass coverage but bucs needs a 3 down MLB that can fill a gap. Teams know you can get a body on #58. They let GMC rush then run seal Kwon in and you have a huge running lane. LVD is terrible at this as well. Props to Lynch against Tenn he was knifing into the gaps and blowing RBs up. THAT’s how you do it.

  17. AmericasEnabler Says:

    Smith is a good LT and will get paid handsomely. Gone are the days of quality NFL players. Good and Ok is hall of fame now. I hope everyone realized the player quality is abysmal compared to 15 to 20 years ago.

  18. Buccfan37 Says:

    Smith looks huge in the pic, hope his comment reported limp off the field is minor.

  19. tnew Says:

    Lets look at the context of that quote.

    Third down three, in the red zone. Donovan Smith is flagged for a false start.

    Ronde is lamenting the back to back play from RoJo trying to bounce a play outside to the Smith play. Contrasting the decision of a rookie and lack of focus from a veteran.

    His quote is “and then you get what is likely your,(interesting pause here) franchise left tackle, whose in line for a big contract, a good football player jump offsides on 3rd and 4 and now its 3rd and 9”

    Barber’s comments don’t seem to be quite so glowing when you honestly go back and listen to them.

    I hope that Smith can be the guy. He very well may LIKELY be. He has shown moments of consistency and had shown some improvement in his penalties. He still is in the top ten (9th, big improvement) in penalties per game but last season had a knack for committing them on big plays. The Bucs need him like so many others. Hopefully, the injury he sustained today is very minor. I’ve been banging the O-Line depth for two seasons.

  20. Birdman Says:

    Joe, you gotta start knocking on wood fam.

  21. Pete Mitchell Says:

    Damn… Watch out Madden cover, we got a new curse here.

  22. TOM Says:

    Dewey Selmon, why are you dragging Conte’s name thru the mud?

  23. Anonymous Says:

    Smith stinks and is soft