This is NFL Draft 101 in its purest form.
This is how you get better in 24 hours. Thank you, Mark Dominik.
For your consideration, here are some key points to think about:
Greg Schiano's Kinda Guys
If there was a problem in the past, it might be that the Bucs simply picked too many show ponies. That can be a problem. They look great, but can they play? They turn out to be what's been long known as "lobby players." Stand in the hotel lobby when an NFL team rolls in, and they all look good. Things change immensely between the white lines on Sunday.
There is no room in Greg Schiano's world for prima donnas. He wants solid, blue-collar, grind-it-out, "bring your lunchbox to work, there's no phoning for takeout" guys. He wants players who got it done big-time on the college stage, and whose mindset will simply push them to the next level. That's a Schiano kinda guy. Details, details, details, FINISH what you start, finish the play, no quitting.
Which brings us to the reason why they didn't take Morris Claiborne. Something came out recently that most would simply pass over. Turns out, Claiborne got that genius-level FOUR on the Wonderlic because he simply blew the test off.
What does that matter, you ask? Schiano wants guys who throw themselves full-bore into EVERYTHING. If someone asks you to take a test, no matter what you think, attack it with everything you've got. Compete. Grind. Claiborne didn't even try. And that type of approach will end up getting you what you got over the past 10 games of the 2011 Buccaneer season.
Schiano wants guys competing at everything. Details, details, details. Tests, playbooks (i-pads)—he wants workers, not prima donnas. He doesn't want guys like Claiborne. He wants guys who take everything seriously. He wants hard will and hard work over attitudes like Claiborne's every day of the week. No wonder they passed on the guy, and that's the last we'll have to say about Mo Mo 17.
If you can't produce in college, then how the heck are you supposed to produce in the NFL? Sounds simple enough.
Schiano doesn't want celebrities, he wants down and dirty football players. There's a certain guy on this football team that loves the off-field spotlight, we won't mention any names (errr Geraldini). OK, so we did. It's time to blow off the radio shows until you've actually proven something on the football field.
When Dominik says he's serious about selecting guys who were team captains, he's dead serious. Team captains understand accountability to their coaches and their team, that's why they are captains. They lead but they also show how it's done through their play.
Schiano won't hand out jobs. That was a downfall of the last regime. Mark Barron, Doug Martin and Lavonte David all come from programs where competition is the mantra. At Alabama, Boise State and Nebraska, there is competition at every practice.
Compete. Isn't that what you want from your Tampa Bay Buccaneers? How many games did they fail to compete in last year?
This is how you get better in 24 hours:
A true champion. Nick Saban runs a tight, disciplined ship at Alabama. No nonsense. Saban has a "dictator" reputation. That's why Barron will fit in from day one. The new culture at One Buc Place matches the culture that produced him as the best safety in the draft and one of the 10 best players on any draft board.
This little fireplug started out as a linebacker, so you know he has no problem whatsoever with contact. The Boise State guys always play with a chip on their shoulders because everyone blows them off during the college season. They're not in the SEC, they're not in the Big Ten. They're little old Boise. What they are is a well-coached, fundamentally sound team.
Mr. Hustle. He's all over the field, versatile, fast, strong, solid. Another SOLID GUY. Do you see the recurring theme with this wonderful trio? Solid, blue-collar guy. He simply gets it done.
That's it gang. Football 101. No glamor, just grit. No hype, just substance. No celebrities, just workers. No problem children, no questionable characters.
It's the Schiano Way, it's the New Buc Order. It's how you get better in 24 hours.