Marshawn Kneeland = Small School Chop Robinson

April 14th, 2024

Western Michigan DE Marshawn Kneeland.

Joe has to be fair here.

A lot of Bucs fans are spooked by the idea the Bucs may draft Penn State edge rusher Chop Robinson. Everything about him screams the second coming of Crows edge rusher Odafe Jayson Oweh, who through three NFL seasons is one season shy of a bust.

Oweh, like Robinson, didn’t produce any quarterback sacks of significance at Penn State. And guess what? The Crows’ first-round pick in 2021 (selected one spot ahead of Joe Tryon-Shoyinka) is doing about the same in Baltimore.

So if Joe is going to wave red flags over Robinson, Joe has to do the same for another edge rusher the Bucs brought in for a 30-man visit. That would be Western Michigan’s Marshawn Kneeland.

Here is the kicker: Robinson, like Owey, didn’t produce in the Big Ten. This Kneeland didn’t produce in the MAC. In three years as a starter, Kneeland had a grand total of 10.5 sacks.

That’s just not good enough for Joe. But apparently, the Bucs see enough in him to spend time with him at One Buc Palace, as Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reported.

So Joe decided to check out what Dane Brugler of The Athletic had to type about Kneeland in his draft guide “The Beast.”

SUMMARY: A three-year starter, Kneeland was an edge rusher in defensive coordinator Lou Esposito’s four-man attack. Lowly recruited (No. 3,427 overall in the 2019 class), he improved each season in college and had arguably the best single tape of any pass rusher i n 2023 with what he did against Eastern Michigan. When shopping for pass rushers, give me the guys who hate to be blocked. Kneeland certainly qualifies, as he uses his long arms and bully hands to get loose. Though he lacks the rush savvy that leads to high-end production, he is explosive in his movements with the power to push the pocket or plant ball carriers. Overall, Kneeland is still taking classes in the art of the pass rush, but he is charged up into contact and displays twitch throughout his frame, which allows him to defeat blockers in different ways. He projects as a starting base end whose best football is yet to come.

This description by Brugler screams “project.” The Bucs have enough of those, don’t they?

Look, at least with Robinson, you could argue he went against some of the better linemen in college playing against Michigan and Ohio State and Iowa. And there are other offensive linemen Robinson faced sprinkled across the B1G that will be in the NFL too.

Kneeland struggled to get to quarterbacks in the MAC. Not even the UFL will give most of those dudes the time of day, forget the NFL.

If you struggle to get sacks against the Ball States and the Akrons of the world, why should Joe believe you can produce in the NFL? Think about it: Bucs weekday warrior José Ramirez edge rusher actually produced and got 12.5 sacks his last year in the MAC playing for Eastern Michigan. Ramirez is such a dominant force in the NFL he can’t get on the Bucs’ 53-man active roster (yet).

39 Responses to “Marshawn Kneeland = Small School Chop Robinson”

  1. Leopold Stotch Says:

    So someone broke it down and said he’s super versatile and part of the lack of production is due to playing in the MAC where one week he’ll play against a passing team, then the next week a wishbone, then the next week triple option. Not always the opportunity to rush a qb.

  2. Joe in Michigan Says:

    The difference in this guy and Chop: Chop should probably be a late 2nd Round pick, Kneeland should probably be a 4th Round pick. Guys that you hope can learn and get better. Where will they actually go? We’ll see in a few weeks.

  3. Joe in Michigan Says:

    We called Western “Waste-tern” back in the early 80’s.

  4. SOEbuc Says:

    Robinson is overrated AF. Sorry for all the chop fans that continuously root for the bust at DE. Unfortunately for you, Licht will not get this guy at 26. And he’s not gonna draft IOL first round with four picks in the first three rounds. Latu is the most solid pick if he’s there.

  5. Joe Says:

    We called Western “Waste-tern” back in the early 80’s.


  6. Esteban85 Says:

    After watching Kancey miked up I believe he is teaching these cats how to rush the passer up to his level. I truly believe he is that once a decade or so kinda player that makes everyone around him better.
    So one of these damn edge rushers is going to hit, which one will it be? Nobody knows but I’d put my money on Latu. I think he’s worth the risk and I’m thinking he may be the one to drop to 19-20. No way Verse gets out of the top 15. I’d be disappointed if we spent a precious second round pick on this guy but hey in Licht I trust as far as talent evaluation goes.

  7. sweti_yeti Says:

    Let’s be realistic. Outside of a couple of guys, this draft has more question marks for pass rushers than guys with proven records of putting the QB down. I’m not going to saddle any of these guys with comparisons to JTS or anyone else. Sometimes the athletic talent doesn’t turn into big time production u u til a player gets NFL coaching. I can hear the bellyaching now if they pick Chop Robinson, but my basic assumption is that our coaches and front office know more about talent than I do, even if it doesn’t pan out sometimes. So whoever it is will be given a chance with me.

  8. Fred McNeil Says:

    Honestly we should draft this guy with a seventh round pick, but only because I think this guy would make JTS look good by comparison. He screams MEH!

  9. BillyBucco Says:

    I would take him only if they trade back, maybe even twice.
    Wouldn’t be shocked if we did trade down twice in this draft.
    2-4 is the sweet spot for stock piling picks that LOVE the game of Football.
    I love that Licht said you can’t fall in love with a player.
    Don’t feel like you HAVE to get anyone.
    Coaching ends up winning games anyway.
    And for the love of the game, please draft SEC players or maybe ACC.
    So tired of flyers on guys from small schools or out WEST.
    Unless they played in Alaska and are on the O Line competition is King.
    This guy screams big fish in a little pond.

  10. heyjude Says:

    No to Robinson and Kneeland. Hopefully, we don’t waste our picks. I would love to see Jared Verse drafted by the Bucs, but we will have to see how it plays out.

  11. Bucs Guy Says:

    Don’t see any of the big 3 Edge getting past 19. There are no other Edge rushers worth a first round pick. Go IOL or trade back. Isaac or Braswell in the 2nd round for Edge.

  12. Hodad Says:

    What if Murphy from Texas falls to 26? Think the Bucs would have to get ahead of the Rams for that. I still say wide receiver is the pick, Adoni Mitchell.

  13. Scott Says:

    Wide receivers are a dime a dozen and I’m confident Licht doesn’t need to pick one in the first round especially a project who may take a few years

  14. Permanently Moderated Says:

    Enough with the small school projects. Another JTS, Logan Hall? No thanks.

  15. Beeej Says:

    I hope JTS is going to every pass rushing school there is during the of season, this is his last chance. Is a pity, guy so tall and fast there’s a million things we could do with him

  16. dmatt Says:

    I want Utahs’s Jonah Ellis. He’s relentless n brings a high motor. Pundits say he can’t stop the run. I dont care, at least he’s consistently good at pass rush n get sacks or cause havoc for his teammates to get sacks, contrary to JTS who’ s weak against the run n pass rush. For those who are JTS fans, I’ve seen enough bone head plays from him for three years, he lacks football intelligence and the physicality of the game. I saw a game in 2022 n 2023 where Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow n Atlanta’s Desmond Ridder respectfully, made JTS look as if he’s outta his league. Will someone please explain to me the reason Bowles continue to hold on to JTS.

  17. A Bucs Fan Says:

    It seems the only prospects worth a look in the 1st are Turner, Verse, & Latu (even with his neck injury). It’s unlikely any of those three will be at 26 and I don’t

    The more I look at the EDGE position the more I don’t want the Bucs to draft one in the 1st round this year.

  18. A Bucs Fan Says:

    I don’t like Latu’s injury history.*

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Pick players in round 1 & round 2 that will start and help us…..Neither Chop or Kneeland do that.

    I’d be all for a #3 receiver……G/C, TE, CB or even a stud running back in the first 2 rounds.

    If we are desperate for an edge rusher….we’ll probably make a mistake. I would rather take a chance on one in a later round.

  20. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    I don’t mind drafting a project DE, just as long it is after the 1st and 2nd round. Perhaps, like in our case, a late 2nd round would worthy of the risk, given it is such a weak DE draft.

  21. 76 bucsfan46 Says:

    I’m like Darius Robinson as an edge and played in the SEC.

  22. HC Grover Says:

    Every block would be a chop block.

  23. Joe in Michigan Says:

    76 bucsfan46 Says:
    April 14th, 2024 at 7:55 am
    I’m like Darius Robinson as an edge and played in the SEC.
    Do you really want an “Edge” with a slower 40 time than Logan Hall?

    Darius Robinson: 4.95
    Logan Hall: 4.88

    Not saying 40 time means everything, but it means something.

  24. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Darius Robinson is boom or bust. He’s a better football player than athlete. He’ll be an Adrian Clayborn 2.0 or a raw Cam Jordan type of player. He’s solidly a second round pick.

  25. SB~LV Says:

    Keep an eye on DT JerWan something

  26. SB~LV Says:

    Johnny Newton ^^^

  27. BucsfaninOregon Says:

    This guy sounds like Plan 10 to me. DON’T FORCE THE PICK! There are maybe two Edge rushers worth a 1st round pick. They will be long gone by our turn. Pick a starter not another Plan.

  28. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Let’s be honest for a second…he kind of reminds of William Gholston.

    I have a feeling he might go undrafted…and regardless of the bucs having so many ‘projects’…we’ll still need to fill a practice squad.

    Marshawn Kneeland could be Gholston’s eventual replacement. Gholston was never big on sacks either, but he produced in other ways.

    I know we need a pass rush, but that doesn’t mean we ignore everything else. If Marshawn Kneeland goes undrafted, there is no harm in bringing him in as a tryout. Anyone of these kids could surprise us.

  29. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Usually, 2-3 draft picks tend to not make a team. Licht has mostly stuck to that average or better.

    Late round picks tend to be busts for teams, with uncommon exceptions.

    I never expect an entire draft class to make the team. It’s just too rare. 6th and 7th round is for Kickers and tryouts.

  30. Conner50 Says:

    Robinson > Kneeland just because chop has such a quick first step a good defensive coach could enhance that in his game and make him better. Although I don’t want Tampa to take either one of these guys, Braswell, Adisa Isaac, or Bralen Trice would be a safer day two or 3 pick.

  31. Bradinator Says:

    Mo Kamara, Colorado State = Shaq Barrett, just younger. Even wears his number at CSU. He can get there! Watch the Senior Bowl.

  32. PSL Bob Says:

    You bring in 30 players for evaluation. We only have 7 picks barring any trades. Sure, some of the 30 you bring in won’t be available when your time to pick comes around, but you have to be selective based on your evaluations. Let’s just hope that best available meets need.

  33. OrlandoBucFAn Says:

    I would prefer to see what Joe Ramirez can do. He is a little shorter and lighter than Kneeland, but he is a bit quicker and, more importantly, was much more productive in college. I’m not suggesting that we pass on an edge rusher, I just think we already have one small college project at the position, so why draft another.

  34. Ugotrobbed Says:

    Unless one of the big 3 edge guys falls to us (or we trade up), we might have to move off that position with the first pick. OL, ILB or corner??

  35. Ugotrobbed Says:

    Maybe WR!?

  36. ChiBuc Says:

    I continue to be flummoxed by the pedestal Shaq Barrett is put on this site. He has 2, TWO, double digit sack season in his 8 yr career. Sure he had a great 3 yr run with one anomalous 19.5 sack season and one pedestrian 8 sack season, only to slide into a 10 sack season. It just bugs me that Joe refers to him as king, posters conjure his name like he is the ultimate OLB/DE standard when we, as buc fans, have truly witnessed greatness at the position in Selmon and Rice. Shaq is no king in comparison.

    Thx for listening to my rant, you may resume make believe drafting

  37. FrontFour Says:

    I just don’t see this as a good edge draft class. Kneeland feels like a RD5 take a flier on a project guy.

  38. Mord Says:

    Bonsai, seems to me Gholston’s replacement is already in the building: Logan Hall—Similar build, and if Hall improves, similar game. (That may be faint praise given how high Hall was drafted, but Gholston contributed in a role Hall could aspire to)

  39. Ben Says:

    Been saying all offseason there really isnt a good option to replace Barrett as a legit edge rushee. Barrett is washed, fair enough, but the draft wont net the Bucs a force on edge. All there is are projects unless you have a top 15 to 20 pick and even that is a stretch as Latu has health issues. This should have been addressed in FA. I dont want to here about cap issues bc any team can make it work and there were soke fairly young proven stud pass rushers that would have been a key piece for years if they spent the money. Now, we are looking for another project in addition to JTS, Ramirez, Watts, Nelson and Diaby to a certain extent.