Underrated Will Gholston

June 20th, 2021

Surprising stat.

Joe isn’t sure how many readers listened to the “Ira Kaufman Podcast” last week when Bucs assistant defensive line coach Lori Locust graciously made an appearance.

Joe asked her about Will Gholston, the longest-tenured Bucs player not named “Lavonte David.” Joe thought of him and David and Mike Evans when the Bucs won the Super Bowl. Boy, those guys had been through years of awful football.

Gholston has always been good against the run. And after last year when Gholston led the Bucs in quarterback hits — that’s true! — it made Joe think.

Did Gholston get a bad rap because of the ineptitude of previous coaching staffs? The Bucs were so damn desperate for quarterback pressure through much of The Lost Decade that Gholston was always pinned as a defensive end in a 43 defense, where he wasn’t adept at getting pressure on quarterbacks. So Joe asked Locust if perhaps Gholston was playing out of position.

Locust said that was absolutely the case and he was much more suited for a three-man front. She raved about Gholston, called him “the quiet assassin” and explained why he is so important for the Bucs defense.

“If you want to see somebody who’s really out there mauling a lot of the offensive tackles, or just really being like effective or helping the rest of the line by setting the edge,” Locust said, “he’s just being so productive.”

Well, here is another small example of how Gholston is perhaps undervalued. Gholston last year ranked fourth in the NFL in “QB knockdowns,” similar to hits but more impactful. Joe doesn’t think there is a defensive lineman in the top-six that Bucs fans wouldn’t want on the team.

Gholston? Well, when you see the list below, it is sort of like those multiple-choice questions in elementary school, “Which one doesn’t fit?” Gholston seems like he doesn’t belong.

Perhaps we have all underestimated Gholston’s abilities?

The way Gholston has become a key cog in the Bucs defense is just another example of what a good coaching staff can do. There is a reason why the Bucs’ defense was so utterly putrid through much of The Lost Decade.

And that damn near cost Gholston his career.

14 Responses to “Underrated Will Gholston”

  1. Jason Says:

    I thought that was outstanding interview. Not quite Nardwaur vs Rappers, but still some really great questions that coach Locust seemed to enjoy answering.

  2. SB~LV Says:

    Not underrated my me…. Watching K Davis too he really flashed into the screen end of the year

  3. Hope springs eternal Says:

    Will benefits from double teams against the other bigger name stars on the D line, but he has really taken advantage of his opportunity. A tough durable yeoman who gives maximum effort all the time.

  4. Rayjay1122 Says:

    I also really enjoyed the interview with Coach Locust. I truly hope that the Glazers have learned finally what a Championship organization looks like and keep the same blueprint moving forward.

    This team could be contenders for the next decade or more if we hold on to the new culture that has just been established.

  5. Chris l Says:

    I will say it right now best interview you guys have had on the podcast. She gave so much insight and it was so great to hear. Great coach and glad she could get some of the spotlight there. Please bring her back on to the podcast soon.

  6. John Sinclear Says:

    Very interesting! I recall that for years Joe did not like Will Gholston. It seems times have changed?

  7. firethecannons Says:

    very decent interview–always like hearing the coaches especially ones that haven’t learned to doublespeak. Byron L. talks alot of nothing.
    Lori seems like a real good asset, this team has spared no expense.

  8. Wesley Says:

    Dude has always been solid not just recently.

  9. SOEbuc Says:

    Tell me something I don’t know that Gholston is underrated. Big piece of the number one run stopping line.

  10. Swampbuc Says:

    Who was the d-bag that burbled how Gholston would be cut this offseason? Some typing monkey from one of the tribes or mobs said that.

  11. Bojim Says:

    Always been a good Buc, like Dotson. Wish Dot could’ve gotten a ring with them as a backup or something.

  12. JimbobBucsFan Says:

    I want to echo what Jason said.  That was a helluva good interview you guys had with Lori Locust, Joes.

    Jason Lich caught a lot of flak from some fans because previous regimes were not “coaching up” the talent well he supplied whether by free agency or the drafts. Nor were they always utilizing them properly.

    Who knows how WR Kenny Bell, or OL Caleb Benennoch, Kadeem Edwards, and Kevin Pamphile would have done had they been fortunate enough to come to the current staff?  I am not football smart enough to say they would have had more success here.  But, I suspect a couple of them would have.

  13. Just Sayin’ Says:

    Just thinking about what it could have been like if the former face of the franchise, Softy McCoy would have been willing and able to play a 3-4. But he simply refused because he was such a good team first leader. Joe always talking about how Softy was wasted, consider it was the other way around, he was wasting the talents of others around him with his losing & selfish mentality. Ring of honor. Ha

  14. lambeau Says:

    Gholston is always listed at 281 lbs, but he says he’s keeping his weight over 300. With Suh and Vea, that’s a lot of beef to try to run on.