Will Game Ball Buy Pamphile Another Game?

Decision time for Lovie Smith

Decision time for Lovie Smith

Nothing gets a veteran player’s groin rumbling more than watching his young replacement get handed a game ball by the head coach.

Last night on the Buccaneers Radio Network, Mike Evans revealed that second-year left guard Kevin Pamphile, making his first NFL start, earned a game ball for his stunning showing against Jacksonville.

Of course, Pamphile was replacing old-man Logan Mankins, who oddly returned to practice on Thursday after Lovie Smith strongly implied Mankins has a serious groin injury. Hmmm.

Joe’s real curious to see how Lovie proceeds at left guard. Lovie reveres Mankins, but clearly another week of rest would help Mankins. And it’s always a good thing to reward a young player for strong play with what he wants most: more snaps.