The B-Word

August 14th, 2019

Called out.

If one were to ask which Bucs player is in a do-or-die season, it is a safe bet the loud crowd would overwhelmingly pick a high-profile guy.

Yes, the easily-agitated would certainly choose America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston.

But Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz of USA Today is taking a different angle. He is of the mind that if fourth-year cornerback Vernon Hargreaves doesn’t shape up, he will ship out.

Middlehurst-Schwartz chose 10 NFL players who are walking a tight rope in the final year of their contracts. Play well and stay, otherwise if they play poorly, they may be calling U-Haul.

Buccaneers CB Vernon Hargreaves: By taking four cornerbacks in the NFL draft’s second and third rounds in the last two years, Tampa Bay has put Hargreaves on notice. Yet the Buccaneers gave the No. 11 pick in 2016 a vote of confidence by picking up his fifth-year option. Despite Hargreaves missing all but one game last season with a shoulder injury and largely struggling in the previous regime’s zone coverages, new Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians has lauded the cornerback, who said he’s been rejuvenated by defensive coordinator Todd Bowles’ press-man scheme. Still, without significant improvement, Hargreaves could be playing his final year with the franchise, as his option is guaranteed only for injury.

We will find out soon enough if Hargreaves is “rejuvenated.” He seems to be but it doesn’t matter how a player feels in mid-August. Otherwise, Hargreaves could be, as Middlehurst-Schwartz suggests, a “bust.” He was burned in the preseason opener and again in practice today.

And the Bucs have drafted enough cornerbacks to supply an XFL franchise in recent years. So it is not like the Bucs don’t have plenty of candidates to replace Hargreaves if he struggles this season.

38 Responses to “The B-Word”

  1. Bucsfan3 Says:

    Yet the dude is so arrogant posting every comment on IG with $$. Start playing and stop living the money lavish lifestyle without production, VG.

  2. cmurda Says:

    I can’t help but root for the guy. Obviously I’m rooting for all the players on the Bucs, but VH3 is likable and the skillset is there. I think he goes ADHD out there. One play he’s giving up a bomb and just a couple plays later he’s got his man blanketed and makes a nice pick. If Arians and Bowles can pump some Adderall into this kid and get him to realize his potential, he could become a legit corner. At his peak, it would be possible that he could become a shutdown corner. I don’t think that his natual ceiling though. I see him hopefully develop in the mold of Ronde Barber who had great instinct, above average coverage skills, and otherworldly ballhawk mastery.

  3. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete (formerly known as 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans') ***Rhealist, louden annoying, & tminimum are the worst posters ever!!! Says:

    Based on the fact that he gets torched for a 40+ yard pass play every single day/practice/joint-practice/scrimmage/preseason game/game, I conclude that Hargreaves is a Liabilty in deep coverage as an outside CB…

    He has a decent 40-time, but lacks top-end speed; which gets him killed on deep routes…

    He’s good within a 20-yd zone or so…

    Stick him in the nickel to compete with MJ Stewart or please just trade him…

  4. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete (formerly known as 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans') ***Rhealist, louden annoying, & tminimum are the worst posters ever!!! Says:

    I would try to package VH3 with Brate and see what we can get for them…

    As players, I like Brate much more than Hargreaves (as anyone in their right mind would Lol), but we are so stack at TE with the emergence of Tanner Hudson now too…

    Make it happen, Licht!

  5. tmaxcon Says:

    Package brate and vh3bust lol just laughable

    One has bad tape and injury history and the other has a hip that will cut his career short…. yep gm’s across the league lining up to give away valuable draft picks for bums with no value

  6. Says:

    Hudson who doe? If Joe, who is there day in and day out, watching practices and interviewing players, does not pick up a beach ball story about Schnell or Hudson exploding in preseason game 1, it’s because it is a non-story, because the guys are bubble guys, or practice squad guys, or just camp meat.

    I know nothing about them and have nothing against them, just making a good old fashioned deduction based on context clues, or a lack thereof.

  7. Greg Says:

    He DIDN’T get torched in Pittsburgh. Jordan Whitehead was supposed to be over the top. Hargreaves was in perfect trail position which is exactly where he should have been.

  8. Buccaroo Says:

    If VH3 plays well it will be a bonus for us from what he has done the last 3 seasons but his position is no way involved with every single play as the QB. Regardless of your feelings on Jameis, it is Jameis who has a do-or-die season. More than VH3. We can easily replace a CB but QB, not so much

  9. Diesel Says:

    So we’re just gonna ignore BA saying VHIII was supposed to have safety help over top in the 43yd bomb in Pittsburgh huh? Still reaching apparently smh…

  10. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete (formerly known as 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans') ***Rhealist, louden annoying, & tminimum are the worst posters ever!!! Says:

    Ok, fine. He was supposed to have safety help on that play…

    But Hargreaves didn’t pass the eye test for me..

    Whatever the reason, when he is actually on the field (which is pretty rarely), I see hill getting beaten up, down, left, right, shallow, & deep. Real talk.

    I think he’s better suited for the slot is all I’m saying… Or try to trade him and Brate ina package deal…

    Just my honest assessment as a die hard bucs fan and Tampa Bay resident for the past 30+ years…

  11. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete (formerly known as 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans') ***Rhealist, louden annoying, & tminimum are the worst posters ever!!! Says:

    Hargreaves *doesn’t pass the eye test for me (as an outside CB at least)

  12. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete (formerly known as 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans') ***Rhealist, louden annoying, & tminimum are the worst posters ever!!! Says:

    typo *him not hill

  13. Defense Rules Says:

    VHIII isn’t a BUST, he just hasn’t shown the performance expected from a 1st Rnd pick. He played in all 16 games his rookie year, but in only 10 games TOTAL these past 2 years. Has ONE INT in his career … ONE. A total of 15 passes defensed in 3 years, with 9 of those coming in his rookie season. Vernon doesn’t hurt for confidence, but based on performance, it’s unwarranted.

    From what I’ve seen watching him play, he’s better suited to the nickel CB position than playing outside. Great instincts & good tackling skills, but you can’t teach speed. There’s a reason Bucs drafted SMB & Dean (tall & fast) & eventually one of them will win the other outside CB starting position opposite Carlton Davis. VHIII & Ryan Smith will end up being outside backups soon enough, but both will get plenty of time at nickel I’d bet.

    Seriously doubt VHIII will be a Buc next year, not necessarily because of performance but because of money. Picking up his $9 mil option was a neat motivator, but the Bucs won’t have the shekels to pay up come next year. When Jameis hits the open market after this season, he’ll be looking at a $35 mil per year payday, as a minimum. Bucs will be competing with a bunch of other teams for his services. LOTS of other mouths will also need to be fed a LOT more money if they play well this season (we’ve got a lot of players on 1-year try-before-buy contracts). This year’s salary Cap he11 will look like a cakewalk come 2020.

  14. westernbuc Says:

    How on earth Jason Licht still has a job is beyond me. Look no further than the secondary.

    ESPECIALLY since Laremy Tunsil, the consensus top pick in the draft, fell past us.

    Even at his best, Hargreaves has never been close to his draft spot.

  15. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Just because he seems immature at times, can’t give up on the guy. We need all our draft pick to make an impact on this team. Rooting for him to come alive this season.

    He doesn’t have the best vertical speed but his 3 cone drill was great showing he has the hips to turn and cut. His feet and ability turn and run with the WR is why he was draft high in the first round.

  16. Magadude Says:

    Well, to “rejuvenate” leads me to believe he’s been something really good at one time. He’s been a big ? since he came into the NFL, and his injuries didn’t help. It is critical for both him AND the Bucs AND the fans for that matter, that both he and Noah Spence step it up this year. As with other pieces like RoJo and Winston, I’m “hopeful” their play can actually bring meaningful results, but not holding my breath.

  17. Ptwalk Says:

    VH3 is finally put into the right scheme for his type of play and because he isn’t lights out yet he should be moved? He looks better on the outside than any corner we have and that includes Davis.

  18. Bucsfanman Says:

    If VHIII produces anything, it will be a bonus. History, however, is NOT on his side. It’s funny how we keep trotting out excuses for players that simply don’t produce. If he were with a winning franchise, would they have tolerated his lack of production? Simply put: NO! Nor should we if he can’t crack the starting line-up.
    We didn’t draft a corner with the 11th overall pick to be a nickel corner!

  19. D1 Says:

    @ Erik hesson,

    Vernon getting beat outside is more than likely not due to “lack of top end speed” .

    I haven’t been to a practice so I won’t bet the farm on it. But I find it unlikely, its 100% attributed to lack of top end speed. Frankly that idea couldn’t stand up to much inquiry so it’s doubtful it’s all about the speed.

  20. D1 Says:


    Youre correct ! VHG, doesnt have the best vertical speed. Only one player can be the best and he’s not that guy.

    Basically I just said nothing. No content whatsoever. But to be fair I’m saying what you did. Point is, what’s the reason why you think slot is a better fit than corner?

  21. OneBuc55 Says:

    Vernon and Vita were the only 2 first round picks Licht has made since he’s been here that I absolutely hated…

    I believe had we not taken Vernon at 11 he would have dropped; we probably could have traded back a few times and got him at least 10 spots later; he has great ball skills but he’s short and slow, personally I thought Keanu Neal was the best player in Florida’s secondary…Also he was often injured in college so its no surprise he can’t stay on the field in the NFL…

    As for Vita…I was absolutely shocked that we traded back and passed on Derwin James…but it is, what it is… we’re stuck with them…so for the sake of the team hopefully these 2 can produce at a high level for us…

  22. Ndog Says:

    Diesel you will soon learn with many on these posts that facts are irrelevant. They just spew inaccurate garbage and completely ignore the FACTS while still shouting from the mountain top that they are right. There is very little doubt why this world is going the direction it is, accountability is non-existant as people just say whatever they want and can run and hide when they are wrong. This goes for the media and posters alike.

  23. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Glad to see VH3 stepping up. Although he has shown good ball skills and confidence this year, I am just not sure any of our corners have shown that
    they are a number one lockdown corner. Paired with a safety that has the speed and and ball skills,we still could be a very good defense. But we also need somebody to step up and fill that role. We still have to see if Justin Evans will regain his health and be a factor.

  24. D1 Says:


    You can’t teach speed. …

    Actually that’s false but not the point. The point , VHG is slow . Too slow to be outside and if he sticks it’s moving to slot. He may be better at slot , but to say he lacks the ability to play outside is an entirely different animal.

    There’s the indirect shot at licht . Why draft the guy that high if he’s a part time player.

  25. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Because teams will try to isolate Vh3 because of his height and speed, the single
    most important thing to improve his game is to be mentally ready. Ronde Barber was not the fastest corner either but he made up for by spending a lot of time in the filmroom learning QB and receiver tendencies. So cutting down his reaction time ,might help him be in position to make more plays.

    I can’t remember which former player revealed this factoid on Ronde ,but all our corners would be wise to follow this example.

  26. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Methinks there is a hidden Gator-Nole thing going on here with both Jameis & VH3……

  27. AMI_Chris Says:

    Yes, they’ve drafted a bunch of cornerbacks…who all suck.

  28. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Hargreaves isn’t going anywhere this year.
    Brate, Auclair and Humphries were all camp meat at one time.
    Right now, game day backup OLinemen are looking like Watford and Benenoch.

    Interesting to see how it plays out…

  29. The Buc Realist Says:

    So much for the “coaching up”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Good thing that they kept all these reclamation fix it up players so the so called gm looks good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2019 will reveal answers to the sheep, that the “real” fans already know!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    go bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  30. Casey Morgan Says:

    Joe is literally making things up and ignoring reality. As Greg says: “He DIDN’T get torched in Pittsburgh. Jordan Whitehead was supposed to be over the top. Hargreaves was in perfect trail position which is exactly where he should have been.”

  31. doctor_berto Says:

    Everyone knew that he was too small and slow to play outside corner in the NFL…everyone except Licht

  32. 813bucboi Says:

    VHG wasnt burnt vs pittsburg….arians admitted whitehead screwed up…..

    folks act like VHG isnt suppose to give up a single reception in practice or in games…lol….

    news flash: WR’s & QB’s get paid too…..parker was a first round pick too….

    VHG is our best CB and his versatility allows him to play outside and nickle…he is NOT just a nickle as some clowns suggest…..

    VHG+TB= folks eating crow!!!!!!

    GO BUCS!!!!!!

  33. LordCornelius Says:

    Every scouting site had him as a lock for a R1 pick and in their top 3 corners that year. let’s not act like it was some psychotic reach.

    Also plenty of corners have his measurables or worse that have been dominant. Chris Harris Jr ran a 4.48 40 vs VHII at 4.50 for example and has about the same size/measurables and is one of the best corners in the league. Plays both inside / outside.

    Agree with DR that at worst he’d be an elite nickleback. Not sure if he can hold up outside still on the bigger WRs or win those matches consistently enough.

    When we drafted SMB/Dean i had the same thought. Eventually one of them takes over outside across from Davis for 2 big imposing outside CBs and then VHIII can take over nickle but they seem intent on VHIII bieng outside

  34. 813bucboi Says:

    and we drafted 4CB’s in the past 2years because we we lacked depth…..we had old man grimes as 1 starter, VHG as the other starter with robert mcclain and ryan smith as our 3rd and 4th CB…..

    we needed youth and depth….

    GO BUCS!!!!!

  35. D1 Says:


    The too small part and licht is possible.

    The idea that He’s too slow , is just flat out not true. No matter how many times its repeated .

  36. T REX Says:

    Its Winston. Do or die. Not sure how anyone could even suggest another player.

  37. Armand Says:

    IT happens to every corner back. However, the safety was supposed to be over the top in the game. PLEASE KNOW FOOTBALL…sheesh

  38. Armand Says:

    IT happens to every corner back. However, the safety was supposed to be over the top in the game. PLEASE KNOW FOOTBALL…sheesh