The Goal Of A Rookie Minicamp

May 15th, 2022

Looking at rookies.

So last week the underwear football season began when the Bucs held two days of rookie minicamp practice.

The team is scheduled to have one final rookie minicamp practice today, which will be closed to media. In the past, it’s been common for the third of the three-day rookie camp to be canceled.

Bucs veterans will be at One Buc Palace this week for the first of 10 sessions of voluntary underwear football practice. (What they want through the past four weeks is considered conditioning.)

So after the first session of the rookie minicamp, Joe asked Bucs coach Todd Bowles what he looks for in rookie minicamps. Remember underwear football never has hitting — no blocking, no tackling of any sort. No pads. Dudes in jerseys and shorts. It’s like flag football without the flags.

Rookies coming from all over the country, the vast majority never meeting until they arrived at One Buc Palace. They’re often out of football shape. So if they aren’t allowed to hit or block or tackle, what’s a coach supposed to get out of that?

Bowles told Joe coaches look for mental performance.

“Just who can obtain the information we give them,” Bowles said. “Every day is a new install – who can apply it, who can put it out on the field, who can make mistakes and learn from them.

“Really, the physical part will take care of itself. We want to see what kind of shape they’re in. We know they’re not in tip-top shape, but really it’s the mental part of it. Getting them to run around and start understanding the scheme.”

A good example of how the coaches know they are throwing a lot at a bunch of green rookies was displayed Friday. Joe saw Northwestern quarterback Peyton Ramsey mishandled a snap.

Clearly, the snap blew up the play. As Ramsey walked back to Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich to get the next play, Leftwich put his arm on Ramsey’s shoulder as if to say, forget it man, worry about the next play.

The point Bowles made about players not being in football shape caught Joe’s attention. Some (not all) of these players were training since the end of their college season for the combine. As Joe has said for many years, the combine is a glorified indoor track practice, not football. So these guys have been in training for track, not football, since early winter.

This seemed evident watching practice as you did not see a lot of long passes. Very few actually. A bunch of deep throws probably would have resulted in receivers, running backs, tight ends and defensive backs with blown hamstrings or worse: an Achilles or knee..

So it’s interesting that in rookie minicamp, it’s more about the mental aspect of football and not the physical. With veterans coming in this week, the Bucs already know, physically, what they can do.

11 Responses to “The Goal Of A Rookie Minicamp”

  1. Goatfarmer Says:

    More evidence that the combine is pretty stupid, and game film + interviewing and character / background checks are far more important than which of the fat guys and broad jump the longest.

    This is also a hint to guys that want to make it in the NFL who are not “anointed” by the neworks and talking dkheads — work your arses off to be in football shape and surprise / impress the coaches who are giving you a 5% or less chnce of making the team. Be fit, man.

    I’m looking at 3rd year man Tyler Johnson also. If you come in fat again, you’re done.

  2. Buc4lyfe79 Says:

    Hard to phantom that the Bolts just won game 7 in a seriously contentious first series of the NHL playoffs trying for their 3rd consecutive Stanley Cup and yet…we have NO JoeBoltsfan podcast for the playoffs as we did the previous 2 seasons

  3. Goatfarmer Says:

    Dude — this is a BUCS WEBSITE.

    The Bolts websites are numerous and quite active.

  4. Delusional Intelligence Says:

    Goatfarmer Says:
    May 15th, 2022 at 2:19 am

    Dude — this is a BUCS WEBSITE.

    The Bolts websites are numerous and quite active.

    Yeah… but most of them suck.

  5. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    Congrats to the Bolts, but I don’t watch hockey.
    Maybe I’ll tune in for three in a row.
    I’m excited about our BUCS this year. Major Tom is on a mission.
    We got some good additions for this mission.
    I like our new TEs especially. I like our new guards..
    I love our passing game, but a brutal running game makes that a lot easier to do.
    I’m nervous, but optimistic about our younger, faster dline.
    Let the games begin.

  6. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    I used to try to watch the Bruins as a kid.
    Back in the Bobby Orr, Phill Esposito days.
    It’s like soccer on ice the fights where cool.

  7. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    PS, I hate soccer too

  8. Bird Says:

    Whats wrong with saying go bolts !

    Obviously not a tampa area guy
    Here for brady only?

  9. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Do you think it would be a good idea to hold a job fair for these guys…..recruiters from UPS, Mattress Moving Companies, Insurance Claims Adjusting Firms and the like?

  10. Bojim Says:

    That’s exactly what I thought rookie mini camp was for.

  11. matthew veal Says:

    Another wording is to find the players that have the necessary vigilance to be successful. The combine, scouting, film, etc has identified necessary talent, but from there a Brady emerges from vigilance to be totally successful, or a Keith McCants (God rest his soul) shows its not there