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Pewter Report’s Scott Reynolds solutions your questions from the @PewterReport Twitter account every week within the Bucs Monday Mailbag. Submit your query to the Bucs Monday Mailbag every week through Twitter utilizing the hashtag #PRMailbag. Listed below are the questions we selected to reply for this week’s version.
QUESTION: The Bucs let Kwon Alexander stroll after which drafted Devin White to exchange him. Because it pertains to on-field efficiency (not potential) – and contemplating White’s upcoming (deserved or undeserved) pay day – ought to we have now stored Alexander as an alternative?
ANSWER: Kwon Alexander was let go for a few causes. The primary of which was his ACL harm he suffered in his contract 12 months in 2018. The 49ers signed Alexander to a profitable deal, however he wasn’t totally recovered within the 2019 season. San Francisco wager that Alexander would return to his 2017 Professional Bowl kind and inked him to a four-year, $54 million deal. There was no manner the Bucs have been going to pay wherever near that quantity – injured or not.
Tampa Bay actually preferred White and considered him as a quicker, extra athletic and more healthy model of Alexander. To date, White has been an improve over Alexander regardless of his faults and shortcomings. White performed an instrumental function within the Bucs successful Tremendous Bowl LV – a recreation through which he had an interception. In opposition to New Orleans within the 2020 Divisional playoffs, White had a key interception and fumble return.
White made the Professional Bowl final 12 months regardless of not having as dynamic of a season as he had in 2020. He’s solely 24 and has two extra years left below contract, as Tampa Bay picked up his fifth-year choice. With new inside linebackers coach Larry Foote in his ear, I think White will rebound and have his greatest season but in 2022.
The 49ers traded Alexander to the Saints a 12 months later, the place he has been a part-time starter at strongside linebacker. He had 50 tackles, 3.5 sacks, a compelled fumble and a fumble restoration final 12 months in New Orleans. However he hasn’t come near the 145-tackle, three-sack season he had in 2017 in Tampa Bay. Alexander is nearly 28 now and doesn’t seem to have as a lot upside. The Bucs appeared to make the correct name in swapping out Alexander for White.
QUESTION: Who can be RB2 behind Leonard Fournette – Ke’Shawn Vaughn or Rachaad White? The teaching employees clearly loves expertise, however White appears to suit a little bit higher.
ANSWER: This can be a query we appear to get not less than each different week. It’s undoubtedly a scorching subject, so I’ll reply it once more. Rachaad White, the group’s third-round draft choose this 12 months, is the shiny new toy. He had an ideal offseason throughout the OTAs and mini-camps. The guess right here is that he winds up because the No. 2 working again behind Leonard Fournette. Such as you stated, he’s a greater match due to his capability within the passing recreation.
Ke’Shawn Vaughn had an ideal alternative to showcase his enchancment and growth on the finish of the season when Fournette was out. However exterior of a protracted landing run at Carolina, Vaughn averaged a paltry 3.1 yards per carry down the stretch. He’s not a dynamic runner, neither is he a lot of an element within the passing recreation. To be honest, Vaughn did present some enchancment this offseason by way of catching the ball. That’s an space he actually wanted to work on.
The massive deciding issue between Vaughn and White can be who offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich and quarterback Tom Brady trusts essentially the most in move safety. Vaughn might need the early edge because of his expertise. However White can have three weeks of camp practices to catch up previous to the preseason video games.
When it’s all stated and achieved, I believe White will emerge because the No. 2 working again behind Fournette. Then, it is going to be as much as Vaughn to beat out veteran Giovani Bernard for the No. 3 working again job.
QUESTION: Why wouldn’t we re-sign Ndamukong Suh and platoon him and Akiem Hicks? Think about subbing one for the opposite.
ANSWER: Ndamukong Suh gained’t play for pennies. The Bucs spent a excessive second-round choose on Logan Corridor and added Akiem Hicks, whom the group paid $6.5 million this 12 months. Suh has made not less than $9 million per 12 months in every of the final three seasons in Tampa Bay. Even at age 35, Suh would probably value not less than $7 million in 2022 – if no more. The Bucs are tight towards the wage cap and certain want so as to add one other tight finish and presumably one other exterior linebacker previous to the beginning of the season.
His large price ticket apart, the Bucs didn’t re-sign Suh as a result of he’s misplaced a step. When wholesome, the 32-year outdated Hicks is a step quicker than Suh, particularly on the subject of dashing the passer. Corridor, who’s 21, was one of many faster and extra athletic tackles within the 2022 NFL Draft.
If this have been the Madden soccer online game, including Suh would make some sense. However in the true world on the subject of the wage cap and precise enjoying time, the Bucs look like higher off with Hicks and Corridor at defensive deal with. Each snap Suh can be within the recreation for can be one fewer treasured developmental snap that Corridor would get – or one fewer snap a more practical participant like Hicks would get.
QUESTION: What space of the offense and protection are you most wanting ahead to watching in camp?
ANSWER: Pewter Report simply got here out with an article over the weekend detailing a few of the most fascinating matchups of Bucs coaching camp. Our PR Roundtable subject this week was “which camp matchups are you most wanting ahead to?” I stated huge receiver Russell Gage vs. nickel cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting. With Chris Godwin out at first of coaching camp, Gage will see a while within the slot towards Murphy-Bunting, who’s coming into a vital contract 12 months.
One other one was nostril deal with Vita Vea and defensive deal with Akiem Hicks vs. rookie guard Luke Goedeke. Linebacker Devin White vs. working again Leonard Fournette was additionally talked about, as was exterior linebacker Joe Tryon-Shoyinka vs. proper deal with Tristan Wirfs. These matchups actually cowl a few of the main factors of curiosity.
Different areas of Tampa Bay’s offense and protection I’m considering watching in camp are the huge receivers basically, tight ends and the reserve exterior linebackers. After Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Gage, the Bucs basically have 10 receivers combating for 3 or 4 roster spots. The tight finish place is stuffed with younger expertise. And it is going to be fascinating to see how Anthony Nelson, Cam Gill, Elijah Ponder and Andre Anthony fare behind Tryon-Shoyinka and Shaq Barrett.
QUESTION: Appears to be like like we can be needing some tight finish assist, are we bringing anybody in? Are we in search of some veteran move catchers? Any replace on Cade Otton’s harm?
ANSWER: There was a report over the weekend concerning the Bucs exhibiting some actual curiosity in Kyle Rudolph. I’ve thought all alongside that he is likely to be one of the best veteran free agent choice due to his background as a blocker and a receiver. Jimmy Graham, Jared Cook dinner and Blake Jarwin are another names to contemplate. Rudolph, Graham and Cook dinner are throughout 30 and their expertise are in decline. Cook dinner is nearly strictly a pass-catcher, and the Bucs will want a superb inline blocker to exchange what Gronkowski introduced in that space.
I wouldn’t be shocked if the Bucs wait a bit on signing a veteran, maybe to offer extra reps to rookie tight ends Cade Otton, Ko Kieft, J.J. Howland and Ben Beise. But when Rudolph is a participant the Bucs are focusing on and demand begins to warmth up for his companies, they could need to hurry up.
As for Otton, he suffered a season-ending ankle harm in November final 12 months and had surgical procedure. He missed the offseason exercises, OTAs and mini-camps. However he’s been diligently rehabbing his harm and is predicted to be able to go at first of coaching camp. The guess right here is that the Bucs give him each alternative to attempt to win the beginning tight finish job in camp.