Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the Bubble: Offense
One week does not a training camp make.
With that in mind—and by popular demand—we are going to jump the gun early for you and take a look at how the positions are shaping up at training camp for your Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Today we'll go over the offense.
Still no depth chart but we've watched four practices and keep track who is getting the reps at what time.
This is how it is shaping up.
Keep in mind, no one has been tackled. There's been no live, full-speed action, put-guys-on-the-ground-type of stuff.
You will be able to form your own opinions when you see the preseason games.
Here's how we see it thus far:
This one's quite easy: Josh Freeman and Dan Orlovsky.
They'll most likely only carry two as they need more bodies elsewhere. That leaves Brett Ratliff on the outside looking in—I don't believe he's practice squad eligible.
How good can the Bucs offense be this season?
LeGarrette Blount and Doug Martin are a given. Mossis Madu and Mike Smith have the inside track on the other two spots.
They kept four last year.
Robert Hughes and De'Anthony Curtis would need huge showings in the preseason games to change this.
Few teams even carry a fullback anymore.
Lorig saves a roster spot by playing both positions, that way they can carry just two tight ends if they want.
Cody Johnson looks from the outside as a possible practice squad guy if they like him enough. He's a fireplug. Built like a miniature lineman.
Zack Pianalto and Drake Dunsmore are both TE/FB guys and migt have a chance for the practice squad.
Does a team need to keep three QBs?
Dallas Clark and Luke Stocker.
Lorig serves as the third.
Colin Franklin and Danny Noble are long shots.
They kept six last year.
Right now, it's Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, Preston Parker and Tiquan Underwood getting the bulk of the training camp reps along with Sammie Stroughter, who is the lead return man.
That's five spots.
That leaves the injured Rejus Benn, Ed Gant, Greg Ellingson, Landon Cox and Armahd Lewis battling for the last spot.
Toughest competition in camp.
Four on last year's roster.
Donald Penn, Jeremy Trueblood, Demar Dotson and Jamon Meredith look like the four likely candidates.
That leaves James Hardrick, Brett Sowell and Mike Ingersoll hoping for a spot on the practice squad.
Again, four on last year's roster.
Carl Nicks, Davin Joseph, Ted Larsen and Des Wynn are the lead four.
Larsen is doubly valuable because he plays center if anything happens to Jeremy Zuttah.
Long shots: Mike VanDerMeulen and Derek Hardman.
Jeremy Zuttah is the man.
Moe Petrus from UConn is the only other pure center in camp.
As we indicated, Larsen is the backup center. If Petrus plays well in the preseason, he could end up on the practice squad.
Last year there were 24 offensive players on the roster, so formulate your own list if you like.
On a 53-man roster, you have the three specialists: Michael Koenin as the punter, Connor Barth as the place kicker and Andrew Economos as the long-snapper.
Next installment: The defense.
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