Big Minicamp For Anthony Nelson

June 6th, 2022

GM Jason Licht has a high bar.

It almost sounds silly to say an underwear football assembly, like Tampa Bay’s mandatory mincamp on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, will be critical for an established player. But it certainly can be when it comes to the all-in Buccaneers.

It’s been suggested by former players and coaches on SiriusXM NFL Radio that the Bucs’ signing of beastly defensive tackle Akiem Hicks last week likely was tied to the Bucs wondering internally about whether rookie defensive tackle Logan Hall can be a standout this season — an all-in year because, you know, Tom Brady.

Perhaps that’s ridiculous, but the premise certainly is not. The Bucs can’t afford to take chances in the trenches on developing players.

The offensive line appears extremely solid, though Joe wouldn’t rule out the Bucs snagging a veteran guard in late August. But the defensive front, where more depth is required, seems a little shakier.

Edge rusher/outside linebacker Anthony Nelson had a breakthrough year in 2021 in limited playing time — five sacks, 10 quarterback hits. And he didn’t miss a game and came on strong late in the season.

Simply stated: the Bucs need at least that kind of production from Nelson this season, which is the final year of his rookie contract.

Joe thinks it’s a big minicamp for Nelson to look the part and further convince the Bucs his growth last season was no fluke. If Nelson has a bad camp this week, Joe could see general manager Jason Licht and company dialing in on finding another pass rushing body before training camp.

Yes, NFL employment is often that fragile.

28 Responses to “Big Minicamp For Anthony Nelson”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We need another pass rusher no matter how good Nelson is in camp.

    We don’t need a vet olineman…..we don’t need OBJ…..we need a pass rusher.

  2. Tim Says:

    We need to grab a reasonably priced ILB after cutdowns, if there’s one to be had. We’ve now got less depth at LB than we do at DL.

  3. SOEbuc Says:

    Get his dollars up.

  4. SB~LV Says:

    Plenty of talent!

  5. Cobraboy Says:

    Why would anyone think Nelson’s productivity was a fluke?

  6. Joe Says:

    Why would anyone think Nelson’s productivity was a fluke?

    Because the Bucs have invested heavily on defensive ends/outside linebackers. If the Bucs thought Anthony Nelson was all that, why re-sign Shaq for major money or burn a first-round pick for a defensive end/outside linebacker (Joe Tryon)?

    It is very telling what teams think of players on their own roster in how they draft in early-round picks and spend cash in free agency.

  7. Mike Says:

    Nelson proved he’s for real IMO. He’s cheap and still getting better.

  8. Cobraboy Says:

    @Joe: because, even one of your guys yourself said, “you can’t have too many pass rushers.”

    I suspect the Shaq extension has nothing to do with Nelson, and the drafting of Hall in the second had far more to do with JPP than Nelson.

    No one has ever said Nelson is the heir-apparent to JPP. But for his role, he’s been fairly solid.


    I’m rooting for Nelson.

  10. Dooley Says:

    I like Anthony Nelson and I think he’s one of the other undermentioned DLmen that gets next to no consideration when some fans are crowing about the status of our DL depth. 25 yo, 6’7, >260lbs, has a really consistent motor, and is hardly ever out of position in the reps he’s gotten. Not as athletic as JTS or have the moveset as a pass rusher like a Barrett, but he plays smart, has great length and sets the edge better than any other DE/OLB on the roster. Go back to the Jets game last year dude had a sack, played the run well, and even dropped into coverage and recorded a pass deflection. Hopefully the former 4th rounder gives our front office reason to have him re-signed/extended at some point by this time next year.

  11. K2 Says:

    Hall and Hicks take over for Suh and McLendon. I think the Bucs are looking a Hall as taking over for Suh and Hicks a young better McLendon. Only time will tell if Hall is a reasonable replacement for last seasons version of Suh. Hall may never be as good as Suh at his best.

    The Bucs will likely add another edge at some point before the start of the season and it doesn’t mean they don’t like their guys. Even though the Bucs expect Tyron to step up…. they really haven’t replaced JPP’s roster spot yet. Clearly the Bucs need at the very least a strong rotational player…that I don’t see on the current roster. Unless Anthony really was a 7th round STEAL.

  12. Tim Says:

    If Gholston can stick through four(!) coaches, Nelson should definitely be retained. Dude is solid, and the more solid contributors you have, the better.

  13. Zoocomics Says:

    Nassib is still out there, and he’d have to be cheap. Just say’n

  14. Locked In Says:

    That’s Major Anthony Nelson

  15. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Nelson should’ve replaced an injured, ineffective JPP in the Rams playoff game- that’s on Bucs’ coaches.

  16. SlyPirate Says:

    The biggest hole on the roster is LVD’s backup. If he’s hurt, the Bucs don’t really have solid backup.

  17. PassingThru Says:

    An I Dream of Jeanie reference! I remember Larry Hagman. I liked his kids, Heidi and Preston.

  18. Casual Observer Says:

    Agree with Pirate. Need a strong backup ILB.

  19. sasquatch Says:

    Nelson isn’t going to be a game wrecker, but hard-working, assignment sound, long armed edge players who can generate 5-7 sacks are valuable. He should see more action and improved stat line this year.

  20. Dooley Says:


    Bowles & Devin White both praised KJ Britt for the steps he’s taken in preparation learning both Mike & Moe positions at ILB. Britts’ not the athlete either guy is, but Bowles also mentioned his play speed looks better with a year in the system and a better grasp of the playbook. So he’s a wait & see guy at ILB that could continue to develop into a solid reserve. Also like the prospects of UDFAs Russell & Fatukasi, either of those guys earning a roster spot would be great for development behind White, David, & Britt.

  21. Rod Munch Says:

    Any GM/coach that beats the teams season on a rookie defensive lineman should end with everyone being fired.

  22. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    I think Nelson can be as good or better than Nassib. He done very well as a part-time rusher. He just needs more reps to prove his worth.

  23. William Oropesa Says:

    If you decided to get unother free agent to have here my idea
    Restructure shaggy Mason contract an also chris Godwin an get back franchise tag . Restructure fred jonhnson contract. So use franchise tag on suh an resign rob gronkowski back an tried to sign clay mathrews on any salary that you have left from resign rob gronkowski.
    Tried to sign odell beckham jr instead of desaun jackson because odell beckham jr deserve a shot with the buccaneers

  24. Casual Observer Says:

    Dooley – Hope you are right about Britt. Untested and may be a bit slow. I also wonder if the drafted OLB, Anthony can also play ILB.

  25. BillyBucco Says:

    You can’t use the Franchise Tag again
    They used it on Godwin so that’s out

  26. Delusional Intelligence Says:

    I would venture to say, if he gets more than 20 snaps a game his production might actually increase. Maybe one of the reasons why JPP was let go?

  27. steele Says:

    Nelson (and someone like Nassib) is a notch below the kind of level needed. Unfortunately it’s getting to be too late in terms of available free agents. Besides JPP, Carlos Dunlap and Justin Houston are the remaining ones who were great ones. Anthony Barr could provide some speed at LB, along with some good blitzing abillity.

    If they don’t make a move in FA now or at cut-down, or pull off some trades, we could be stuck praying for JTS, Nelson and Ghol, and Logan Hall, to play like pro bowlers. Not something I feel good about.

  28. David Says:

    He came on strong at the end of the year, he needs to keep it up to be part of the pass rush rotation