Three Years And Growing

May 12th, 2020

Joe’s written about how nobody coaches offensive linemen like University of Iowa guru Kirk Ferentz, college head coach of Bucs first-round pick Tristan Wirfs.

He’s churned out incredible tight ends, too.

A walk-on linebacker for Ferentz at Iowa, former Colts and Bucs tight end Dallas Clark, was moved to his position in college and later became a first-round draft pick. And Ferentz’s list of stud tight ends rolled on from there.

Wirfs is special among the special, Ferentz told The Dan Patrick Show last week. Patrick asked Ferentz what he would tell Tom Brady about his new right tackle.

“I think he’ll be really pleased,” Ferentz said of Tom Brady when he studies the Bucs’ first-round pick.

“You know Tristan’s an amazing kid. He grew up about 25 miles from [the university] and I always joked, he and A.J. Epenesa were the kind of guys we never get. Boy, he came with a really good skill set. He’s the first guy in 21 years to play tackle as a true freshman. I think he started 7 or 8 games. The best thing about Tristan right now, he’s a tremendous person, first and foremost but also his upside — he’s only played three years of college football. So the next couple of years, not that Tom Brady cares what Tristan’s going to look like four years from now, but you know, the next couple of years I think he’s just going to continue to blossom. He’s a really good player and a tremendous young person.”

That’s among the exciting traits of 21-year-old Wirfs; he’s polished but raw at the same time.

If he can be a punishing run blocker and a reasonable pass blocker from Day 1, Joe will be ecstatic. So should Brady.

23 Responses to “Three Years And Growing”

  1. Bucsfanman Says:

    Once again, if you’re not amped about Buccaneer football, there’s something wrong with you. There have been so many subtle, and not so subtle, upgrades to this team.
    All Wirfs has to do to improve on the position is not be a turnstile penalty-magnet like his predecessor! No offense to Demar but, he was way past due.

  2. ModHairKen Says:

    Character and skill and experience. Thosw are the keys.

    But people will say he had too many downs. It’s laughable to hear people run down him and Jon Taylor because he had “too many” carries in COLLEGE. Anybody ever hear of Frank Gore or Tom Brady or Clay Marthews, Jr. or Tony Gonzalez. These guys aren’t a carton of eggs.

  3. ClwJB Says:

    The balance in the run game will be key – the world knew Dot could not seal the edge, pull, or trap – couldn’t get in front of a screen – and if he didn’t latch on at first contact, he had no ability to recover

    The athleticism difference alone will outweigh the growing pains

  4. Matt Says:

    Yeah as soon as I saw Wirfs’ Instagram I knew we hit a home run. He’s family oriented and all he wants to do is make his mother proud and be the best he can be. He was the type of player that Lovie would get but without the athletic upside. Imagine Ronde Barber’s character in Warren Sapp’s upside, that’s what we’re getting. We could have 3-4 All Pros within the next 2 years, we’re silently putting together one of the better rosters in the league and Wirfs has the highest upside of them all.

    Our flexibility on offense just shifted into another paradigm with Wirfs’ athleticism. Our screen game is going to be beautiful to watch. Watch how the Eagles use Lane Johnson and now imagine how Wirfs’ is even more of a mauler. Hope Cappa makes another leap of development this year and I think he will. I expect Donovan Smith to play his heart out this year.

    You never want to wish away time but dang can’t the season start already?

  5. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Tristan Wirfs has the skill set and the feet to be a future pro-bowl left tackle let alone a right tackle. Can’t believe he fell to #13. I had him rated as the top tackle on the board. If Smith does not resign in a few years, I see Wirfs changing positions to left tackle. Great pick.

  6. ClodHopper Says:

    Gentle giant

  7. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Devin White & Tristan Wirfs……..two great characters…..two great athletes….two positions of need…..two solid picks.

  8. Hodad Says:

    Here’s the thing, Dotson was never a pro bowl talent. While Licht was pissing away second round picks on kickers, and the likes of Spence, talent at RT was never addressed. Now it finally has been. We can run to the right of the formation again, and run screens that way also. Licht got lucky landing Wirfs with his back finally against the wall for hanging on to Dot to long.

  9. BUC CHEEKS Says:



  10. BUC CHEEKS Says:

    Yes I pistol whipped the caps, SORRY… ha! I’m that guy

  11. 541BucsFan Says:

    Licht is maturing as a GM. Dominating the line of scrimmage is where it starts.

  12. Sport Says:

    Buc Cheeks – agreed. It’s pretty much impossible to change Shill Joe, it’s an unconscious mental tick. He has no control over monikers. Annoying as hell, my only hope is JBF gets shut down by Brady and he learns a lesson.

    In BA I Trust!

  13. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Licht is getting better

  14. Erick Says:

    You Jameis haters are funny. He’s gone, move on. Time to find another player on team to bash daily

  15. Oneilbucs Says:

    keep him at right tackle !!!

  16. Cobraboy Says:

    Massive upgrade at RT.

    Rojo and Vaughn should also be pleased…

  17. 813bucboi Says:

    i thought he would be better suited for G but if the coaches feel he can play RT, then im all for it….

    GO BUCS!!!!!

  18. Rob in Land O Lakes Says:

    Cobraboy siad: “Massive upgrade at RT.

    Rojo and Vaughn should also be pleased…”

    There’s only a handful of posters whom I always stop to read the comments. Cobraboy is one of them.

  19. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Wirfs gives us protection on our line for the next few years. He can start at RT, can be moved to Guard and become all world, or could potentially replace Smith in a year or 2 at LT. He wasn’t the OT I wanted most in this draft but the guy helps us out a ton and gives us a potential all pro player. Licht has had 2 really strong drafts in a row now.

  20. buc15 Says:

    I agree with you Rob. Cobraboy is one of few that I respect his POV & knowledge of the game.

  21. ItzOK Says:

    Hope he works out but law of Licht averages say he will bust out. White, and Vea were great picks but this still feels like a reach for a RT when many project him as a guard.

  22. pick6 Says:

    i dunno what to make of that assessment….having started 8 games as a freshman he has started 30+ college games in 3 seasons. pretty common for an OL to come into the NFL with that many starts and often way less….so how exactly is he more raw than a typical rookie tackle?

    every rookie has upside (theoretically), and most draft picks haven’t started 30+ games for a major program

  23. N GA Mountains Says:

    He has to be an improvement on the previous tenant at right tackle. It was painful for me to watch pour Dotson and his knees. Really looking forward to improvement in the run game!!