Yardbarker Horiz

2012 NFL Draft Countdown

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Young Core Defense Is Flush With Youth

To build a team through the draft means to build a nucleus of young players and allow them to mature and gain experience through rotation during the season.  You need to find youth which is talented enough to get into a positional rotation or youth which can develop on the coverage teams and find it's way into the rotation later.

Knowing this, it makes sense to find draft needs by looking at the young core of players instead of the current starting lineup.  If the starting lineup has a need, free agency is probably the right place to look since experience is needed immediately.  In the case of the 2010 Tampa Bay Buccaneers young players need more experience (i.e. the rebuilding process means creating depth across the board).  The status of the rebuilding process can also be measured by looking at the young core.

To build this chart of the Young Core Defense, I took the most recent Buccaneers team depth chart and roster (both of which have been a moving target all year) and placed all the defensive players with four years of experience or less (because the average NFL player has a 3.5 year career).  I ignored players on the practice squad as they are under a less-binding contract structure.  This provides a glimpse of the "core" of the defense (players listed in order of years of NFL experience)

LCB  Talib, Aqib (3); Biggers, E.J. (2); Johnson, DJ (2)
LDE  White, Stylez (4); Bennett, Michael (2); Gilbeaux, Brandon (0)
2DT  Miller, Roy (2); Price, Brian (0)
3DT  Okam, Frank (3); McCoy, Gerald (0); Woods, Al (0)
WLB  Hayes, Geno (3); McKenzie, Tyrone (2)
MLB  Hayward, Adam (4)
SLB  Black, Quincy (4); Watson, Dekoda (0)
RDE  Crowder, Tim (4); Moore, Kyle (2); Magee, Alex (2); Johnson, George (0)
RCB  Mack, Elbert (3); Lewis, Myron (0)
SS  Harris, Dominique (0); Asante, Larry (0)
FS  Jackson, Tanard (4); Lynch, Corey (3); Grimm, Cody (0)
K  Barth, Connor(3)

The constant influx of young players to this side of the ball in 2010 has created a very healthy looking chart for the offseason.

We'll use this information for our analysis leading up to the 2011 NFL Draft.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Injured Reserve Brimming With Talent

With just two weeks remaining in the 2010 season, the Buccaneers have amassed one-fourth of a regular season roster on their Injured Reserve.  The 13 players on the Injured Reserve list are:

50Alston, JonLBRES6'0"2356/4/19835Stanford
58Black, QuincyOLBRES6'2"2402/28/19844New Mexico
69Dotson, DemarTRES6'9"31510/11/19852Southern Mississippi
52Faine, JeffCRES6'3"2914/6/19818Notre Dame
72Gilbeaux, BrandonDERES6'3"2706/9/19870Delaware
35Grimm, CodyFSRES6'1"2032/26/19870Virginia Tech
32Huggins, KareemRBRES5'9"1985/24/19861Hofstra
75Joseph, DavinGRES6'3"31311/22/19835Oklahoma
93McCoy, GeraldDTRES6'4"2952/25/19880Oklahoma
94Moore, KyleDERES6'5"27210/25/19862USC
92Price, BrianDTRES6'1"3034/10/19890UCLA
25Talib, AqibCBRES6'1"2052/13/19863Kansas
36Jackson, TanardFSSUS6'0"2007/21/19854Syracuse

Black, Faine, Joseph, McCoy, Moore, Talib, and Jackson were opening day starters.  Grimm replaced Jackson when he was suspended by the NFL.  Huggins had started getting carries when he was injured versus New Orleans.  Price had started to earn more snaps on defense.  Alston, Dotson, and Gilbeaux went on IR before the first snap of 2010.

These 13 will be added to the end of season 53-man roster along with the 8 men on the practice squad resulting in 74 players on the offseason roster.  This means there will be only 6 open spots remaining on the offseason 80-man roster -- and a complete slate of 7 men coming in the 2011 draft.

It will be another interesting offseason!