In a division filled with good tight ends, Kellen Winslow might be the best: He put up good numbers last year, even though he often was missing practice during the week to rest a sore knee. Bucs defensive ends in 2010 combined for only 9.5 sacks. If Williams and Blount continue to progress, Freeman should have little trouble taking another step forward. 2. It happened with safety Cody Grimm and guard Ted Larsen. Blount took over the feature-back role from Cadillac Williams around midseason and rushed for 1,000 yards. Two teams that play a 3-4 scheme outpaced the Bucs in sacks by defensive ends (Packers and Chiefs). For comparison's sake, the New York Giants led the league with 32 sacks by defensive ends, including nine in Weeks 4 and 5 alone. Tampa Bay Buccaneers players listed alphabetically or numerically. Get the latest Tampa Bay Buccaneers news, scores, stats, standings, rumors, and more from ESPN. 5. The offense is as flexible as any: Offensive coordinator Greg Olson isn't one of those guys who are totally committed to running the ball or throwing it. But I think the Bucs took a risk by letting middle linebacker Barrett Ruud leave and not bringing in someone with experience to help the younger members of the front seven along. I understand and like Tampa Bay's philosophy of building through the draft. • Rankings: Top 300 players | 2011 projections, • Cheat Sheet Central | Draft kit | Play for free, • 44 NFL players dish on Vick, confidentially, • How Vick's 21 months in prison shaped him, You are fully responsible for the content you post. 3. 1d. Mike Williams should get more help this year from a young receiving corps that also includes Arrelious Benn, Dezmon Briscoe and Sammie Stroughter. So far, that looks like a good risk, as the concerns about Bowers' knee -- concerns that dropped him from a possible top-15 pick down to the late second round -- haven't been proved right. But most of all it happened with receiver Mike Williams, a fourth-round pick, and LeGarrette Blount, an undrafted free agent who signed with the Bucs after being cut by Tennessee. It's possible the Bucs could be starting two rookies at defensive end, two second-year players at defensive tackle and a rookie at middle linebacker. Instead, Olson takes what the defense gives him. He took control of the locker room, calling a players-only meeting to order everyone to behave after a series of off-field incidents. He could be in for a huge season. This is totally Josh Freeman's team: In his first full season as a starting quarterback, Freeman carried the Bucs to 10 wins. Josh Freeman finished sixth in passer rating and rookies LeGarrette Blount and Mike Williams cracked the top 20 in rushing and receiving yards, respectively, while outpacing all other first-year players in those categories. Bowers, used judiciously, should be an effective pass-rushing specialist early on. For more Buccaneers coverage, visit: Pat Yasinskas' NFC South blog ... on Twitter | Clubhouse | More predictions. The Buccaneers finished third in the NFC South last season with a 10-6 record. The Buccaneers are members of the South division in the National Football Conference (NFC) of the National Football League (NFL). The defense is incredibly young: Just look at the front seven. He threw 25 touchdowns with six interceptions and brought up the level of play of everyone around him. Blount is going to be asked to become more of an every-down back. The Buccaneers won seven more games last season than in 2009 -- and they can partially thank their youth movement on offense. Youth is not always a bad thing: Last year, it seemed as though every time the Bucs had an injury, they plugged in a late-round draft pick or someone they claimed off waivers and that guy instantly stepped up. Foster, a third-round pick, could very well end the season as the team's leading tackler after cuts had him stepping into a major void. More important, Freeman showed he has the intangibles to be an elite quarterback. Williams instantly became the team's top wide receiver. But he said he knows how that feels, talking about 2007, 2011 and 2017. share. Winslow now says the knee feels better than it has in years. Five things you need to know about the Buccaneers: 1. • Clayborn and Bowers cannot do much worse than their predecessors in terms of rushing the passer. Among teams that played primarily a 4-3 defense, that total ranked last in the NFL. They want him to do both those things this year. If healthy, this group figures to be the line of the future for a Tampa Bay team that had trouble stopping the run in all directions last season. 2011 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Statistics & Players: 4-12 (4th in NFC South), Coach: Raheem Morris, ProBowl: Joseph Although the offense gets most of the attention, the Buccaneers have made their largest investments on the defensive line. The Bucs were hesitant to use him as a pass-blocker or receiver out of the backfield last year. The list documents the season-by-season records of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' franchise from 1976 to present, including postseason records, and league awards for individual players or head coaches. If the defense is loading up on the pass, Olson will run Blount 30 times. We reserve the right to block any user who violates our, 44 NFL players dish on Vick, confidentially, How Vick's 21 months in prison shaped him. 4. The risky pick, by many accounts, was second-round choice Da'Quan Bowers. His leadership role was only enhanced during the offseason when he first organized workouts for the skill-position players and later put together a minicamp for the full squad. Defensive tackles Gerald McCoy and Brian Price were the Bucs' top two draft picks in 2010, and defensive ends Adrian Clayborn and Da'Quan Bowers were the top choices in 2011. Content that includes profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"), or other inappropriate content or material will be removed. That makes this offense tough to defend. If the defense is putting eight men in the box, he won't hesitate to let Freeman throw the ball 40 times. The Buccaneers finished third in the NFC South last season with a 10-6 record. Tampa Bay Buccaneers roster for the 2011 NFL season. Two early picks on pass-rushers highlighted Tampa Bay's draft, but the first rookie to watch may be linebacker Mason Foster, and not merely because he already has had a friendly run-in with Chad Ochocinco. Tampa Bay Buccaneers stats, statistics and information, including scores, schedules, results, rosters, standings and transactions.
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