By Chris Matson
I recently read an article in USA Today by Nate Davis predicting the Bucs will be a 3-13 team in 2014. How he made this conclusion you ask? He based it solely on his assumption that Josh McCown isn’t “The Real Deal”. Atrocious I know. To make such a determination this bold is idiotic given the amount of position needs we’ve addressed in free agency and the draft.
We aren’t the 2011 Colts, McCown will not dictate the entire outcome of the Bucs season. In the offseason, we got rid of Revis ‘Hairline Island’ freeing up a ton of loot allowing the Bucs to cannonball into free agency grabbing Michael Johnson, Aterraun Verner, Anthony Collins, Brandon Myers, and Evan Dietrich-Smith. In May we drafted WR Mike Evans, TE Austin Sefarian-Jenkins, RB Charles Sims, T Kevin Pamphile, G Kadeem Edawrds, and speedster WR Robert Herron. The first time in franchise history the Bucs didn’t draft a defensive player.
It’s evident Lovie is building an offense Bruce Gradkowski could thrive in. McCown is coming from an offense with 6’4 Brandon Marshall, 6’3 Alshon Jeffrey and 6’6 Martellius Bennett, to and offense with 6’5 Vincent Jackson, 6’5 Mike Evans, and 6’6 Austin Sefarian-Jenkins. He will literally be playing ‘500’ with his receivers this season. Demar Dotson, Jamon Meredith, Anthony Collins, Dietrich-Smith, and (hopefully) Carl Nicks will make sure McCown has ample time in the pocket. So, based on Mr. Davis’ season prediction I must say you sir, are a cunt. I know I’m focusing mainly on the offense but I have to rebuff one of the most inept season predictions I’ve read this year.
On the other side of the ball the Bucs have boosted their defensive line with behemoth Michael Johnson which features two-time Pro-Bowler Gerald McCoy and second-year pro William Gholston. In the secondary we have All-Pro Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Pro-Bowler Dashon Goldson, Pro-Bowler Alterraun Verner, and Mark Barron. Based on stats from ESPN.com the Bucs were smack dab in the middle in every defensive stat last year. That will only rise with actual coaching from Lovie and his staff and in their second year (Banks, Spence, Gholston, Means) the 2013 draft class is looking to culminate into something great this season.
So, my prediction is that the Bucs go 10-6 for the first time since 2010 this season. The Bucs have an entirely renovated team and coaching staff and with the death of Bucs owner Malcom Glazer it only adds fuel to the fire to be a winning team in 2014.