“He’s Probably A Year Away From Having The Functional Strength”

October 26th, 2022

Rookie guard Luke Goedeke

A lot of Bucs fans expected and wanted rookie left guard Luke Goedeke to be Ali Marpet 2.0.

That was unfair and unrealistic, though it was reasonable to think Goedeke would not be a liability as he’s been this month.

Buccaneers legend Rondé Barber told the Buccaneers Radio Network this week that Goedeke may be physically overmatched for the remainder of the season when it comes to tough matchups.

“He’s probably a year away from having the functional strength to deal with some of the guys that he’s had to deal with, but you learn best by putting guys in situations to learn,” Barber said. “Unfortunately, [Goedeke] is on a team where the expectation is that he’s got to be at least as competent as Ali was for the past six or seven years.”

The strength take is interesting. Yes, rookies usually get stronger and add man weight out of college. But Goedeke is an older rookie. He turns 24 next month and is older than Tristan Wirfs, so Joe’s not sure the strength element applies.

Barber added that that rotating Goedeke and Nick Leverett at left guard isn’t ideal because it can mess up continuity/communication on the line. And Barber sees a line that’s already struggling to work together. “You can tell that there’s still that trust factor that’s not there with the entire unit,” he said.

Barber hopes the left guard rotation leads to one guy winning the job in the next handful of weeks.

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36 Responses to ““He’s Probably A Year Away From Having The Functional Strength””

  1. MadMax Says:

    Its his speed, not the strength. He’s probably hit his wall on strength due to his age….i mean this isnt a strong man competition, you need agility too. Its his speed of diagnosing, processing, and the movement.

    Give him another year and we’ll see what we’ve got. Just stay healthy. Im still pulling for you Luke.

  2. Tony1775 Says:

    Rolling the dice with rookie. He will get better, but it is SB or bust.

  3. Joseph C Simmons Says:

    @Tony1775: Super Bowl? SUPER BOWL? DID YOU SAY SUPER BOWL?

    ~In my best Jim Mora Sr. voice

  4. HC Grover Says:

    next year he will be ready.

  5. AbucAway Says:

    Agree with MM. Give him a year and check back in. This has been one of the more trying rookie seasons for a player I’ve seen. This is JL’s folly, imo. Luke will get there, in time.

  6. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    He is in over his head, and lacks the brute strength to make up for mistakes on his technique.

  7. Upstate NY BUC Says:

    Good news Bus fans!! at this moment we are the worst rushing football team in NFL HISTORY stat wise, let that sink in… Go Bucs…

  8. Dooley Says:

    It’s his footwork, hand usage, and the fact he’s playing LG as if he’s still an RT. Goedeke has held his own on occasion, but Cam Heyward exposed him beating him with strength and winning the leverage mini-game at the point of attack. When Goedeke isn’t on skates, he’s too upright off the ball, habitually plants his feet bracing instead of keeping low and using is upper body in concert with his footwork to slide in passpro and drive defenders off the ball. Not calling him a bust, or writing off Goedekes’ career potential like some fans do with other players on the roster, but it’s case where the rookie is starting to look like a rookie.

  9. Tap-Out Says:

    This is good fodder for next year!

  10. ZZbucs Says:

    Blaming Goedeke as responsable for this situaction, is incomplete unfair and inaccurate.

    He is a rookie and he can play better, no doubt about that, but what about.

    Please can anyone name me 5 players that are playing great not named Succop and Maybe, repeat maybe Winfield?

    What about playcalling?
    What about the FA additions?

    Dont blame the kid…..

  11. John Olmstead Says:

    My son plays the interior OL and has the strength, size and athleticism to play at this position in the NFL. Why is Geodoke playing and my son is not on a roster? The ability of the NFL, collectively, to evaluate talent is way overrated. They put weight on coming from a power 5 program and not actual ability. Cheers to the kid from Bowling Green who displaced a QB from Alabama! There is a reason why high draft choices are consistently on the street after rookie contracts!

  12. Tap-Out Says:

    Get in Draft position to take SS396!

  13. Uncle Urk Says:

    Joe, you can’t compare the LG to Wirfs. Are you kidding me? The strength issue absolutely applies. Wirfs could jump out of a swimming pool in college. Wirfs went to Iowa. The LG went where? Do you think a 25 years old lineman from Monmouth university is as strong as a 23 years old lineman from Alabama? How about Florida v Alabama? It’s different classes of athletes. Can’t believe you put that in writing. Lol

  14. Anonymous Says:

    You don’t even come close to maxing out on strength at 24. Cmon man. 28-32 you get man strength.

  15. Tap-Out Says:

    He looks like a rookie because that is what he is!

  16. ClwJB Says:

    When you can read the guards number on an inside running play he is either standing up too soon or getting pushed back- either way he loses – that is #67 on most run plays – he also has a habit of stepping out of the gap before the defender even moves and then the Dlineman just slides inside of him untouched

    Like listed above – doesn’t punch correctly and has high leverage

    It’s gonna take another off season for him to get good enough, they have to go to Leverett for now

  17. Bucamania Says:

    He’s pretty freaking far from okay.

  18. SufferingSince76 Says:

    Let Leverett start and bring Goedeke in to spell him. Leverett is just playing better right now.

  19. David Says:

    All true. He needs year or two to develop. Why then would GM and Headcoach no grasp that and thus look to free agents and waiver wire for more experience?

  20. Cobraboy Says:

    He’s outmanned, yet the coach run Fournette off his butt?

    The coaches are ‘tards.

  21. beano Says:

    “The average age of World’s Strongest Man medalists is 29 years and seven months.”

  22. Dooley Says:


    There was a 3/4-man competition at LG through camp before the Jensen injury. It was Hainsey, Stinnie, Leverett and Goedeke all gettin reps at LG, but after the Jensen injury Hainsey was needed at C, then Stinnie & Leverett both got hurt before the end of the preseason and Goedeke was pretty much the last man standing. Our depth was being tested/exhausted before the team even took a regular season snap

  23. Cover deuce Says:

    They’re going to say Goedeke is sitting with an injury and start Leverett. It’ll be a lie, but bc he was a second round pick we gotta protect his ego for whatever reason (even though he’s gotten big boyed in full view of everyone pretty much every week).

  24. Pryda...Sec147 Says:

    I like Luke I’m sure the game is moving extremely fast for him he will be a lot better with experience but sit him down a few weeks till someone else gets injured

  25. sasquatch Says:

    An off-season of training will hopefully get him there.

  26. Defense Rules Says:

    Dooley you nailed it. Folks conveniently forget that Goedeke didn’t win the starting LG position outright; the competition evaporated when Hainsey was needed at Center and Stinnie & Leverett both got injured in Training Camp. He may well have ended up being 4th in the pecking order if not for the injuries.

    I wonder how many SECOND ROUND ROOKIE OLinemen (like Goedeke) have ended up STARTING from Day 1 say in the last 20 years. My gut instinct would be to say very few. Heck I doubt that even a majority of 1st Round rookie OLinemen get to start their freshman year in the NFL. The differences between college & the NFL are just too dramatic, in terms of technique, in terms of strength required, and obviously in terms of the level of competition faced week-in & week-out.

    Luke seems to have a great attitude, and that bodes well for his future, but technique & strength don’t magically appear overnight. Licht hit the trifecta with Wirfs, Marpet & Donovan Smith IMO, but that’s not gonna happen with every draft pick. Two of the 3 of them were quite massive human beings (6’5″ & 320 lbs and 6’6″ & 338 lbs), and Marpet had exceptional strength & technique for a 6’4″ Guard weighing a mere 307 lbs. Goedeke (and Hainsey) both probably need another year (or 2) of development to rank as beasts in the trenches.

  27. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    When we lost Jensen & Stennie…….Licht gambled by not replacing either of them…..he obviously took some advice from coaches….didn’t want to give up draft capital….
    Also, the FA money he had remaining was probably earmarked for Gronk…..

    Losing one….we might be able to handle …..losing two…..nope.

    I think Goedeke will eventually work out….

  28. Beej Says:

    There’s college strength, and there’s PRO strength,. I can’t see making that transition in the span of 6 months. It’s unfortunate the guys having to be a starter now

  29. Carl L Says:

    Good news! Nfl oks Bucs win Thursday night. Major $$$$$$ on the Ravens.

  30. Browsing from DC via MA Says:

    I feel bad for the kid. Put in a spot where he has to perform above what is realistic for a rookie coming from a small program. I agree with others. Licht should have made some moves when the dominoes stated tumbling down after the Jensen injury. The whole “he’s a high draft pick so we have to play him” is garbage. There very few rookies like Wirfs that can excel in year one. I thought ppl said Licht was an Oline draft genius? Very few Tony Bosellis or Anthony Munoz’s out there. Every position is a “skill position” not just WR, RB and QB.

  31. Old Sombrero Says:

    There was a play in the 2nd quarter- pass play – where he got steamrolled, fell backwards and flat on his back. The defender pressured Brady which lead to a rushed incomplete pass. Go back and look at the vast majority of incomplete passes and you’ll see serious breakdowns. He’s a better run blocker (not saying he’s a road grader at that either). He’s not the only one breaking down in pass protection but he’s responsible 1/3 of the time which is enough to stall an offense. Couple that with zero perimeter speed and no tight end support and this offense is in neutral.

  32. MadMax Says:

    @beano, yep. And thats all they do…strength train….easy. A lot more to that in football. Plus you risk injury when going all out. These guys have to find a balance.

    I call it the UFC effect. Your biggest most buff guys usually dont go far. Its the more agile but strong guys (not looking like a bodybuilder) with their technique and quickness of their body and their processing skills of how they are sizing up the opponent in front of them….

    Thats why I like O line players who have a wrestling background, which Ali did.

  33. captivajim Says:

    So , i guess this must be absolutely shocking news to LICHT .!!!!!

  34. Rod Munch Says:

    In general this should be said of all rookies – you should NEVER bet on rookies to step in and play. Hainsey is a great example, he’s a converted tackle, had a year to sit, and frankly he’s played quite well. Cappa is another, except Cappa’s workout numbers were awful, he was at the very lowest end in terms of speed and strength, and yet, with a year of being an NFL player and having an NFL diet and an NFL weight room, he stepped right end and was fine.

    Marpet, meanwhile, the reason he rocketed up the draft board was because he was truly a special talent and had special measurables. That’s why, even as a D3 kid, he went so high.

    Goedeke is sort of in the middle of all of these guys. He does have great college workout numbers, but as Barber is pointing out, workout numbers and functional strength are not the same thing. One area I might disagree with Barber on is the idea that he won’t get that functional strength until next year. I’m not so sure I agree, I think he can get stronger during the year just by having to be out there. But obviously Barber knows a lot more than I do about that, so he’s probably right.

    In any case, I think Goedeke has been fine so far. Marpet was basically a pro-bowl player his rookie year, Wirfs was an all-pro player his rookie year, and Bucs fans are completely spoiled thinking that’s what you get every time you put a rookie out there. However, generally, it goes more like this.

    Also Goedeke has done his best in pass protection, when that is backwards of how it generally works with rookies. Also all his scouting reports said he should excel in the run game. That tells me it’s not him that is the issue with the run game – it’s the scheme and the God awful predictable playcalling.

  35. orlbucfan Says:

    Let’s get real here. Brady is injured and acts on the field like he’s a fossil. He can barely scramble anymore plus hit targets like ME13, CG14, and that young TE who caught a terrific pass over the middle in the first quarter. No wonder the defense gave up. The only positive out of this season is Brady will be gone after it. I feel for Bowles.

  36. bucs4life Says:

    So the coaches KNEW he would jeopardize the offense but they simply didn’t care. Is this it?