No Rookie Wall In 2020?

August 16th, 2020

Antoine Winfield, Jr.

It appears the Buccaneers will rely heavily on at least two rookies, as the team hopes to play at least 19 games this season.

Right tackle Tristan Wirfs and Antonine Winfield, Jr., the respective first and second-round picks were drafted, in part, for their NFL readiness. Wirfs comes from the plug-and-play-linemen program at Iowa, and Winfield has been groomed for his safety job by his ex-NFL dad.

But what about the famous rookie wall, the has a way of slamming the brakes on good rookie seasons as players wear down after endless training as soon as their college bowl games conclude. Rookies typically jump into rookie minicamp after the draft where, of course, the good ones bust their asses to impress.

Joe has heard multiple NFL types talks about how this year the rookie wall might be nothing more than a three-foot fence for many players, thanks to The Sickness.

“I mean, [this rookie class] hasn’t been through that same grind that they have in the past. It will be interesting to see physically [how they hold up],” Colts GM Chris Ballard said.

He drew on his history with All-Pro linebacker Darius Leonard, who missed all spring of his 2018 rookie year with a minor muscle pull and proceeded to lead the NFL in tackles, with 7 sacks and 4 forced fumbles.

Joe thinks there’s a lot of merit to this thought, especially given the work ethics of Winfield and Wirfs. Joe easily could see those guys starting a little burnout in May and June if they had the opportunity.

Joe’s not grateful for The Sickness, but this could be a hidden benefit.

17 Responses to “No Rookie Wall In 2020?”

  1. ModHairKen Says:

    Given their positions, those guys can play, maybe in game 1, but how in the hell does San Diego get Justin Herbert or Cinci get Joe Burrow ready for game 1? No way. No way.

  2. Cobraboy Says:

    Prolly. And no rookie break-in, either.

    Trial by fire results in some burns.

  3. stpetebucsfan Says:

    The “sickness” is a tragedy for sure but it does contain quite a few unintended consequences that will actually be positive…in many areas of life.

  4. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    I mean Justin Herbert was going to bust regardless of if the sickness happened or not.

  5. BillyBucFan Says:

    I might cry when football starts.
    Always remember when googling Gary Oldman, the”R” is the most important letter.

  6. Jason Says:


    Now that was effing hilarious. Lmfao.

  7. SOEbuc Says:

    Rookies should be rotated in slowly first two games.

  8. SOEbuc Says:

    Hopefully rotate them into the first and second and they kill it without an offseason.

  9. Marine Buc Says:

    Devin White started as a rookie and had some ups and downs plus battled injuries… I’m sure our rookies will have a similar experience. Some good games a few not so good and hopefully they can avoid any major injuries.

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We have a good mix of rookies & vets on this team……the offense, in particular is loaded with veteran players…..
    The front 7 for the exception of White are experienced….and I expect White to shine….right away….watch him!!!

  11. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    BillyBucFan Says:
    “Always remember when googling Gary Oldman, the”R” is the most important letter.”
    Ack… have you made that mistake? Results best left unseen.

  12. BigHog Says:

    Safety has the competition needed to make the creme rise to the top!! NO WEAKNESS!!!

  13. SB Says:

    First Non-racist comment I have seen from you in a while Big.

  14. Hodad Says:

    I think he’s right about the rookies getting more time to rest this off season. I always thought the draft should be held the week after the combine. Include more players, longer combine, but no pro days, no private work outs. Rookies have enough to learn coming in without having to be burnt out from the draft process too.

  15. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Hodad: agreed on the draft, the sooner the better, IMHO. Also, I’ve never liked the active/inactive players on a roster. If the guy is on your team’s roster, he should be able to play on game day. Is there a reason for this that I’m missing?

  16. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    SB Says:
    “First Non-racist comment I have seen from you in a while Big. Kudos!”

    Hog has his moments. He is a product of our education/press syndicate. If his heart is pure, he can be salvaged.

  17. Oneilbucs Says:

    Hodad I agree with you about the combine and the draft . They do need to have the draft after the combine .