Did Todd Bowles Accidentally Name Robert Hainsey A Starting Center?

August 10th, 2022


Now Joe knows many in the Bucs organization — Joe has spoken with suits, coaches and players — have very strong, vocal support for Bucs backup center Robert Hainsey to take the reins from injured Ryan Jensen.

However, head coach Todd Bowles has been pretty consistent in stating nothing has been settled when it comes to who will start at center.

Well, when rattling off starters for which the Bucs must find backups — using preseason as sort of an audition — Bowles included Hainsey with the starters.

“Right now, there’s a bunch of interior offensive linemen [positions unfilled),” Bowles began. “Who’s going to play behind Donny [Smith] and Tristan [Wirfs]? Who’s going to play behind [Robert] Hainsey? Obviously, you have to have somebody to play [behind] right guard as well, to back up [Shaq] Mason if something happens.”

Well, that sure sounded to Joe like it’s Hainsey’s job to lose.

If the Bucs are looking for a backup for Hainsey, Joe supposes that would be Nick Leverett, unless Bowles thinks Leverett could end up starting at left guard.

Given what Bucs ground control coordinator and offensive line coach Harold Goodwin said about Luke Goedeke’s pass blocking, it sure feels like it’s too soon to hand that job to Goedeke. At least for Week 1.

22 Responses to “Did Todd Bowles Accidentally Name Robert Hainsey A Starting Center?”

  1. steele Says:

    Given the unanimous belief and acclaim from within the org, it is Hainsey’s job to lose. We have not gotten a ton of focus or analysis on everything Hainsey has done on the field, and we need more of that, but the praise has not wavered. If Hainsey is not a disaster in the next few weeks, ink him in.

    We also still don’t have Jensen’s prognosis. If Jensen somehow is able to play by late fall, the chances of them going outside for a new starting center is further diminished. I doubt they’d invest in anyone unless it is for a full season, and only if whoever it is can clearly outplay Hainsey.

    Still, I think they are taking huge chances. Stinnie/Goedeke/Leverett should make everyone sweat. That is why I hope they at least look for a solid veteran who can play LG or C.

    It isn’t too late to think outside the box. Given all the work that Hainsey has done at C, could he be moved to LG, if necessary? How about bringing in Tretter for C if Jensen is out the whole season, moving Hainsey to LG?

    Hainsey will be the center of the future if he doesn’t blow it. The question is whether he should take over now.

  2. Bucsfan13 Says:

    @Steele. I’m nervous about the line as well. The fact that they crowned Hainsey the starter without really no competition speaks of complete hubris by Licht and company. He’s Licht’s guy. This guy is a converted tackle who’s never taken a snap at center, and he had virtually no competition in camp. That’s coaching malpractice. I don’t wanna hear about how his teammates rave about his hard work. What else would they say? I don’t believe for one second Brady has a choice in the matter on this decision. Goodwin is calling the shots when it comes to who starts on the OL.

    Once again, I’m so sick of the Hainsey propaganda coming from the team and various local media outlets. I would love to have a neutral observer look at him in practice, and give a detailed analysis of his play. It’s not enough to write about one good rep he might’ve had or to hear about how smart he is. How is handling the communication on the line? How is he handling games and stunts? I want specific details. I’m sick of these vague statements.

  3. Bird Says:


    I am in your camp. Heck they had brandon walton running with the ones at left guard a day or two. And i thought i knew all the guys on the team. Not this guy. So you will have a new left guard next to a new center next to a new player in this system with shaq mason. But everyone thinks its no big deal. Sure stinnie is listed as starting guard but you think he can go a whole season there? Bucs paid him what 1.4 mil or something. They dont even think he is the guy. Im sure they were hoping goedeke would come in and eat glass. He may eventually but sounds like his pass protection is currently a liability in keeping brady upright

    Well we will find out soon if calls need to be made cause we got 2 practices against fins and preseason game on Saturday.

  4. Hodad Says:

    Don’t get the love for Tretter over Hainsey just because he’s a vet. His own crappy team didn’t bring him back, and so far no other team has brought him in. The Ravens rookie center is dealing with a bad foot yet Tretter sits. Let’s not lose our heads over this. Hainsey is the Bucs center.

  5. Bird Says:

    And i am pulling for hainsey but…

  6. Nutterbuccer Says:

    Hope we add a vet in a week or two if we don’t that could be good news on Jensen. Never seen an injury take this long to announce I would be shocked if he’s out all year at this point.

  7. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Brady will decide soon….

  8. Anonymous Says:

    Where are the “another wasted 2nd round pick” crys at?

  9. BucsNoles Says:

    What TBBF said. . .

  10. Chris Tucker@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    I agree, Hainsey is our Center. Tretter comes from a totally different blocking scheme, so people need to STFU about getting him.
    Plus, his own team did not bring him back!

  11. Just Saying Says:

    In the quote Bowles names 4 OL that need backups. I’d say that only leaves LG as the unsettled spot.

  12. D-Rome Says:

    Has there been an official injury designation with Ryan Jensen? I searched the web and came across something two days ago stating nothing official has been stated. I’m not sure if that has changed since Sunday night.

  13. Joe Says:

    Has there been an official injury designation with Ryan Jensen?

    No. Joe dropped a hint as to possibly why in Ira’s pod published yesterday.

  14. Goatfarmer Says:

    Two weeks Tretter

  15. lambeau Says:

    We’ll find out soon enough how Hainsey handles Raekwon Davis.

  16. Maniac Buc Says:

    Hainsey is the starter. There is no need for Tretter. People are literally ready to jump off a bridge. Calling for unbiased coverage of our new center is crazy. Y’all, take a chill pill.

  17. mark2001 Says:

    I heard it Joe yesterday. I think people that don’t listen to those podcasts really don’t want to know much below the surface. Or they are unaware for some reason. Listen up guys… if you don’t listen, you are missing something.

  18. sasquatch Says:

    They’re going with Hainsey. He’s the future at center. Next year will be interesting after Hainsey has been a starter for a year and Jensen comes back. Maybe Hainsey slides over to LG then and Goedeke sits another year and becomes the top interior backup.

    Jensen’s injury is life in the NFL. No reason to panic. We don’t need to be going elsewhere for our center.

  19. Goatfarmer Says:

    Maniac, are “y’all” really Osqueelbuc?

  20. Locked In Says:

    Where is Garrett Gilkey when you need him!

  21. D-Rome Says:

    I heard it Joe yesterday. I think people that don’t listen to those podcasts really don’t want to know much below the surface.

    Has nothing to do with that mark2001. There is very little time in my life to listen to podcasts. I gave up my own successful podcast earlier this year (not related to football) simply because I no longer have the time to record with so many commitments. My inability to listen to podcasts is the only drawback to working from home.

  22. Brazen Zebra Says:

    First three responses (@steele, @Bucsfan13, @Bird) were really great! True Bucs fans that really know their stuff!. It all starts in the trenches. The OL and DL are so important. And, a good center? That’s right up there with left guard. I hope the Bucs get it right, and maybe ask for an independent evaluation. The Bucs do not want to start 1-3 cause their interior line is doing some OJT, On-the-Job-Training. And, it risks an injury to Brady. I’m prayin for you Jensen. Heal, baby heal.