“Crazy” Options For Todd Bowles

July 29th, 2023

“Ira, this is going to be fun.”

When head coach Todd Bowles learned on Monday that veteran defensive lineman Will Gholston would return for his 11th Bucs season, Bowles had to have felt like Joe being asked to choose a favorite server at a local Hooters restaurant.

Bowles got one of his guys back. Gholston is another player Bowles knows he can use in his mad scientist ways to dial up wild and crazy blitzes, exotic defensive schemes to help guys attacking from all over the field.

So Gholston adds to a mix that already includes Vita Vea, Greg Gaines, Logan Hall and Calijah Kancey on the defensive interior — several guys with speed, with power, and a couple with both.

Who will come at offenses? And when? And from where?

This was not lost on Gholston when Joe spoke to him earlier this week.

“You see those guys rolling?” Gholston asked Joe of the defensive interior. “It’s crazy.”

And yeah, Gholston laughed when Joe asked if Bowles might be staying up at night figuring out various ways to use him and his defensive front teammates.

“It’s a whole list of them,” Gholston said. “I feel like we can come at teams with so many different position groups out there.

“You can have big guys. You can have quick guys. You can have big guys coming from the edge.”

And Gholston is absolutely right. If Kancey is as quick as folks say, why not once in a blue moon have him line up on the edge? Bowles has done that with Vita Vea.

Gholston can rush the passer, too. When the Bucs won the Super Bowl in 2020, guess who led the team in quarterback hits? It wasn’t Jason Pierre-Paul or Bucs sacks king Shaq Barrett or even Ndamukong Suh. It was Gholston.

The next year, Gholston ranked fifth on the team in quarterback hits.

Maybe because the Bucs were getting no pressure from the edge last year, Gholston was down to 10th on the team in quarterback hits.

But yeah, it ought to be fun again watching Bowles experiment with his pass rush from the interior.

Now, go work on that edge rush, Coach!

23 Responses to ““Crazy” Options For Todd Bowles”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Will Ghollston…..you can’t expect any more from a 4th round pick…..good player, great Buc.

  2. garro Says:

    I am pretty sure we are gonna see some new wrinkles in the DL.
    These quicker guys are gonna let Bowles do some crazy stuff.
    Hope it all works.

    Go Bucs

  3. Austin Says:

    OG bucs sticking around, I love it, this team’s more like a family than anyone else

  4. Dooley Says:

    Yes, let’s move Calijah Kancey further away from the route which is the shortest distance between two points just to say we can bring more pressure off the edge lol

  5. JimBobBuc Says:

    If you ask Gholston leading questions about Bowles schemes, of course, Gholston will confirm it. Gholston had great reliability with few injuries and a smart player, and if he’s in shape, he will contribute. He’ll also be a great mentor for Kancey and the other young DL’s.

  6. HC Grover Says:

    Replace Plan 9 with Kancey.

  7. NCBucfan Says:

    Mikey, Lavonte, and now willie. I love these dudes. Have been a big part of the Bucs through the lost decade and beyond! Not just great players, but great people as well!

  8. NCBucfan Says:

    Dominick was an average GM at best, but we have to thank him for Lavonte and Willie for sure!

  9. Buccos Says:

    Big Will is a valuable mentor to these young guys. I’m not sure how much he’s got left in the tank but I guess we’re gonna find out

  10. A Bucs Fan Says:

    I love the D-line, but if the bucs are serious they should trade Devin White and a 4th for Vikings edge rusher Danielle Hunter. Sirvocea Dennis could step in as a rookie. He isn’t quite as fast as Devin but he’s cerebral and has great instincts which translate to becoming a very good football player.

  11. Sly Pirate Says:

    Dooley … agreed. I’ve seen Vea destroy 2 OL on one play so many times. Give speed demon CK the A gap and that QB is down before he finishes his 5 step drop.

  12. Fred McNeil Says:

    Dooley, nobody suggested moving Kancey to OLB permanently. Bowles likes to create unexpected circumstances and second-guessing along the offence. I’m sure he will play three-technique most of the time.

  13. Joe Says:

    Buccos nailed it.

    His quarterback hits have dropped steadily since 2020, big drop off last year. Not sure if that is because last year the Bucs had no edge rush do they didn’t have to pull blockers from the inside or not.

    Gholston is the kind of guy who could help out younger players. Dirk Koetter called Gholston once “a glue guy.” For Koetter, that was a high compliment.

  14. Irishmist Says:

    Since Dennis is looking so good in coverage playing inside, maybe we should put White on the outside and let him do what he does best, rush the passer. It worked for the Cowboys when they did that with Micah Parsons.

  15. ATLBuc Says:

    If Dennis develops, it would be nice to see us running some 4-3

  16. PewterStiffArm Says:

    I love the national media not even giving us a sniff when it comes to legitimacy. I’ll put our front seven against anyone in this league. Obviously pressure and chaos are the two main ingredients of a Todd Bowles defense, release the hounds!

  17. Cobraboy Says:

    An inside DL getting QB hits is because the edge is forcing the QB to step up into the pocket.

    No edge pressure, no need for QB to step up, and fewer IDL QB hits.

  18. TDTB Says:

    We should see both Hall and White used as edge rushers some this season. Could be interesting.

  19. CleanHouse Says:

    I wish we had Suh.

  20. RustyRhinos Says:

    No More Sue, we CleanedDaHouse

  21. All_da_way Says:

    Bucs front seven is going to be fierce. But that backend has to hold it together.

  22. Dooley Says:

    “No edge pressure, no need for QB to step up, and fewer IDL QB hits.“

    Pressure in our system manifests from the inside out, the key is the IDL forcing enough to warrant a double team and isolate the OTs lol straight line through the A-gap is the shortest route to the QB whether he steps up or not lol

  23. FrontFour Says:

    Great bringing Gholston back. He’ll be rotational at this stage of his career but that’s perfect for what we need now. And such a solid guy. D line looking better.