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Five Needs this Offseason for the Bucs from Scouts Inc.

Wide receiver — The Buccaneers are looking to upgrade their speed on the offensive side of the football. Wide receivers Joey Galloway and Ike Hilliard are past their primes, even though Galloway is still an explosive downfield threat. He led all receivers with six touchdowns and averaged 17.8 yards per reception. Backup Michael Clayton continues to struggle in his development, while Maurice Stovall is a young developing player who has made an impact as a core special team’s player. Backup receiver and return specialist Mark Jones is an unrestricted free agent.

Cornerback — Starting CB Ronde Barber is an aging player who best fits the Buccaneers’ Cover 2 scheme, while Phillip Buchanon replaced Brian Kelly, who battled injuries and assumed the No. 3 CB position. Kelly is not expected back and will test the open market. Buchanon showed flashes of being a steady player under defensive backs coach Raheem Morris, but is best suited as a backup No. 3 or No. 4 corner. Backup Torrie Cox is an aggressive special team’s player who also fills a role in the Buccaneers’ sub defensive packages.

Running back
— Starting RB Carnell Williams suffered a torn patellar tendon at Carolina in Week 4 of the regular season and may not be ready for the 2008 season. Backup Earnest Graham replaced the injured Williams and rushed for 898 yards and 10 touchdowns. Graham is a one-cut runner with lateral quickness and run strength. Backups Michael Pittman and Michael Bennett are both unrestricted free agents. Bennett made little impact last season, while Pittman battled injuries for most of the season.

— Even though QB Jeff Garcia will be the starter in 2008, he turns 38 years old this month. Garcia had a great year playing in Jon Gruden’s West Coast offensive system. Backup Luke McCown was impressive when given the chance to play this past season, but he lacks experience. Bruce Gradkowski gained valuable experience his rookie season, but is still not ready to be the full-time starter. Chris Simms did not play last season; he spent the season on injured reserve.

— The Buccaneers have the youngest offensive line in the NFL. However, it could get a lot younger with starters John Wade and Matt Lehr set to be unrestricted free agents. Wade was the most experienced player among the group, which stabilized the interior. He is a smart, instinctive player who seldom made mistakes in both the running and passing games. Lehr is a versatile player who could play either center or guard, while adding experience to this young group.




    February 22, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    This is easy…pick a receiver in the draft (DJ HALL) and get one in free agency (Randy Moss or Javon Walker). Get a Corner Back first round of the draft (Talib from KU), running back in free agency or draft (doesn’t really matter which one we’re set in the back field), QB in free agency, and Center in the draft!

  2. devin

    February 23, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    pick randy moss and dj hall with DAUNTE STALLWORTH and u got a winning super bowl team o dont forget chad johnson or his cousin key johnson

  3. devin

    February 23, 2008 at 5:13 pm


  4. JS15

    February 24, 2008 at 9:19 am

    I think everything can be fixed with the draft… joe flacco could be a good qb for the future of the franchise… i don’t think we should use our first round pick on another OL… we should get a Wr (sweed, kelly or manningham) or a CB… free agency could also help alot (stallworth would be nic addition…

  5. Greg

    February 27, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    I would like 2 see bucs get D Jackson from California he would b able to help immediantely w returning kicks manningham drop n draft

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