Others Notice The Bucs’ Smurfs

May 20th, 2022

Big man among new “Smurfs.”

Those who have been around a few years saw how Joe Gibbs won three Super Bowls with three different quarterbacks. Joe doesn’t think anyone will see that again: One coach, nine years, three Super Bowl wins, three quarterbacks.

Pretty incredible.

And while Gibbs had a virtual rotating door for quarterbacks, he did have one constant: His receivers were little guys but fast as lightning and they could all catch. They were nicknamed the “Smurfs.”

That’s what Joe thought of earlier this week at Bucs underwear football practice. Receivers were standing together and they were all little guys. Scotty Miller looked to be the biggest and he’s 5-9.

Jaelon Darden, the immortal Cyril Grayson, Jerreth Sterns, Utah State’s Devin Thompkins and Kaylon Geiger are all little dudes. The new Smurfs!

Joe mentioned this practice notes and folks took notice. So too did Byron Knowles of Football Outsiders.

Tampa Bay also attempted to corner the market on small undrafted wide receivers, trying to find Tom Brady his next Wes Welker. Will Western Kentucky’s Jerreth Sterns, Utah State’s Devin Thompkins, or Texas Tech’s Kaylon Geiger pull it off? All three were overlooked in the draft, but that’s easy to do when none of them top 5-foot-9.

Smaller guys, especially in the NFL, are on rosters because they can move. So Joe doesn’t have much of a problem with smaller guys because speed kills.

Yeah, Tyler Johnson was out there too, as was Breshad Perriman. They are bigger receivers. But it was jarring to see a bunch of receivers standing shoulder-to-shoulder watching practice waiting their turn to get snaps, and Miller might have been the biggest.

26 Responses to “Others Notice The Bucs’ Smurfs”

  1. tampabayallday Says:

    Sterns is playing like Steve Smith 2.0

  2. Chris Tucker@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    These little receivers often struggle against NFL Press Coverage.

  3. SB~LV Says:

    My money is on the Western Kentucky guy…

  4. Netwalker Says:

    Sterns may be short but he’s not little. 183 lbs at 5’7″ is quite stout. Betting this guy makes the roster.

  5. Bird Says:

    Wes welker is sterns size . He did just fine

    Julian a tad bigger. Stud
    All three around same forty time

    Come down to quick moves and toughness for sterns

  6. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Tampa Bays former offensive Coordinator Joe Gibbs, had the same Offensive line. The Hogs, Russ Grim and Joe Jacoby and the boys that were the backbone of the 3 Super Bowls, with 3 different QB’s. The Smurfs were very good, but that offensive line is legendary now. Just ask Rigo, John Riggans

  7. Dooley Says:

    I like Sterns because he’s just looks reliable and smooth as idk what from what I’ve watched of him at WKU, BUT Deven Thompkins plays with a ton of juice and has an air of confidence thats hard to miss watching him on film, plus he’s fast as hell.

  8. Thadeus Says:

    Make Scotty the next Wes.

  9. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Thad says……..Make Scotty the next Wes.

    They have, but Scotty has not been able to stay on the field. You have to be durable, hopefully Scotty can stay on the field. Your greatest ability is your Availability.

    GO BUCS!!!!!

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    What the hell happened to the “Dunkaneers”?

  11. Dooley Says:


    it got tossed in the trash with “NO Fly ZOne”, Mark Dominik, Schiano, Darelle Revis and the 2012 uniforms redesigns.

  12. Goatfarmer Says:

    Smurfs. Remember Jacquez Green and Reidel Anthony? Yeah. Me neither.

  13. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    Remember the marks brothers, Duper and the other guy …dolphins during the Marino era.

  14. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    Mark clayton

  15. Casual Observer Says:

    Giving them a chance. Fine. Maybe one or two can do the job. So be it. I, too, suspect that Sterns will surprise. Glad he is here.

  16. D-Rok Says:

    I wonder what the 3-cone drill time is for each of these smurfs?

  17. Brandon Says:

    August 1976 Buc Says:
    May 20th, 2022 at 9:30 am
    Tampa Bays former offensive Coordinator Joe Gibbs, had the same Offensive line. The Hogs, Russ Grim and Joe Jacoby and the boys that were the backbone of the 3 Super Bowls, with 3 different QB’s. The Smurfs were very good, but that offensive line is legendary now. Just ask Rigo, John Riggans

    Please don’t act like you’re an authority on NFL history when you can’t spell half the names correctly. It’s Grimm, Riggo… Riggins.

    And for Joe, the first Redskins Smurfs weren’t all that great. The early Redskins playoff teams were led by king-sized Art Monk but the best of the Smurfs was Charlie Brown… they also had Alvin Garrett, Virgil Seay, and a couple others that really didn’t stand out. The best receivers in Redskins history was the trio of Monk, Gary Clark, and Ricky Sanders… they weren’t nicknamed the Smurfs, they were the Posse… and they were fantastic.

  18. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Hey Brandon, was only making the point it was the same O line for all 3 Lombardis. Wether it was spelled correct or not, the point I made was correct. The O line was the backbone of the Washington Redskins of the 80’s and early 90’s that won 3 Lombardis.

  19. David Says:

    They have Evans, Godwin, Perriman, Johnson… all bigger.
    Darden, Miller are smaller. Grayson Doesn’t seem that small

  20. Daryl Green Says:

    We need Emmanuel Sanders & Suh.👊🏾🤙🏾

  21. BUCman Says:

    Brandon……you are 💯 percent correct. The receivers that were great under Gibbs were the posse (Monk, Clark, & Sanders). Not the Smurfs. The reason the Smurfs had success was because they had the greatest offensive line (Hogs) in the history of the NFL during the Gibbs era. One of the greatest left tackles in the history of the NFL is not even in the HOF (Joe Jacoby). The Hogs were dominant for a decade and the top Hog was Jacoby. Should have been a first ballot HOF. It’s a disgrace that he’s not in. Okay, I’ll get off my soap box now.

  22. Nick2 Says:

    Tyler Johnson and Perriman are good receivers but we are trying to win one last ring for the Goat. We need more big plays like Scotty provided two years ago. I say keep Scotty and if Stearns lor one of the others ights up the preseason he at least makes the practice squad. Brady is the most accurate passer of all-time he can hit smaller receivers better than anyone . We need that lightning in a bottle and right away.

  23. George in Brevard Says:

    I think some jobs will change hands.

    Maybe even find a returner!

  24. Bigz Says:

    Yeah a 5,7 receiver making a contribution in the NFL, come on man.

  25. August 1976 Buc Says:

    The walk off TD Pass to Perriman against Buffalo, exhibit A about the impact any receiver on an NFL roster can make, especially with TB 12, The play by Perrimanan was the difference in the game.
    Scotty, little guy, makes the play that was the difference in the score to take down GB in the NFC Title game on the road. That play by Scotty will live forever on NFL Films. It was one of the biggest plays in the history of the Bucs franchise. It made a 2nd Lombardi possible.

    GO BUCS!!!!

  26. don g Says:

    Agust1976Buc The O line was def the most important part of that team Young people dont understand this To them Mccaffrey will win every superbowl They just dont get it