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#15 : January 13, 2009, 09:22:19 AM

I don't expect the Glazers, Allen, nor Gruden to tell me what their plan is, but I've been watching football long enough to recognize good planning from bad planning. With very few exceptions, when new regimes take over teams at ground zero, and 2004 was ground zero for the Bucs, the biggest things to do is fix the quarterback, offensive line, and defensive line. Look at what Parcells did with the Dolphins. He drafted Chad Henne to be the quarterback of the future and signed Chad Pennington to be the quarterback of the present. He drafted Jake Long to start at left tackle and signed Justin Smiley to start at guard. He traded for Jason Ferguson to play nose tackle and drafted Philip Merling and signed Randy Starks to play defensive end. It's as simple as that.

The Bucs already had a pretty good defensive line at the time, so that only left two things to fix. So what do the Bucs do? Draft the #5 receiver out of 15 possible players and then the #3 running back out of 5 possible players. The Bucs have yet to commit to a quarterback of the future, and haven't even found re-treads as good as Pennington. On the offensive line, they've committed heavy resources and haven't gotten an equal return. You'd never see a Parcells team pick two guards in the top 40, yet whoever he did have would smoke Joseph and Sears. Now the defensive line is a wreck and they're not even done fixing what was broke 5 years ago.

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

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#16 : January 13, 2009, 09:24:06 AM

I really don't think it is an issue of not having a plan.  I think people are tired of having an offense that can't get the team into the playoffs or even more important, past a 1st round with a win.   People are frustrated with poor drafts, lack of quality FA acquisitions, the defense giving up on the team this year.  I think people are tired of all of the excuses.  







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#17 : January 13, 2009, 09:36:24 AM

I don't expect the Glazers, Allen, nor Gruden to tell me what their plan is, but I've been watching football long enough to recognize good planning from bad planning. With very few exceptions, when new regimes take over teams at ground zero, and 2004 was ground zero for the Bucs, the biggest things to do is fix the quarterback, offensive line, and defensive line. Look at what Parcells did with the Dolphins. He drafted Chad Henne to be the quarterback of the future and signed Chad Pennington to be the quarterback of the present. He drafted Jake Long to start at left tackle and signed Justin Smiley to start at guard. He traded for Jason Ferguson to play nose tackle and drafted Philip Merling and signed Randy Starks to play defensive end. It's as simple as that.

The Bucs already had a pretty good defensive line at the time, so that only left two things to fix. So what do the Bucs do? Draft the #5 receiver out of 15 possible players and then the #3 running back out of 5 possible players. The Bucs have yet to commit to a quarterback of the future, and haven't even found re-treads as good as Pennington. On the offensive line, they've committed heavy resources and haven't gotten an equal return. You'd never see a Parcells team pick two guards in the top 40, yet whoever he did have would smoke Joseph and Sears. Now the defensive line is a wreck and they're not even done fixing what was broke 5 years ago.

BP also selected our beloved OL coach. [Muir]

Why do you necessarily have to be wrong just because a few million people think you are?

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#18 : January 13, 2009, 09:47:56 AM

OregonBucFan - Bruce Allen has the final say in the draft room what he says goes.  Dexter Jackson was the fastest player available and Allen didn't take into consideration that he is raw speed nothing else.  Do we even know if he can catch?  Im pretty sure Gruden wanted Brian Brohm in the 2nd but Allen didn't want to move up to obtain him.  Things like these make me question who should be in charge.

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#19 : January 13, 2009, 09:49:14 AM

I believe the plan may have gone from Winning a SB to maximizing profits. 

DYK, we have a college football forum... http://www.pewterreport.com/forum/index.php?board=5.0

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#20 : January 13, 2009, 10:05:35 AM

Chev, I haven't called for Gruden's head. I still believe in him. I think it's more than "lack of a plan." The plan isn't hard to see, but it's flawed. We missed out on Yamon Figurs because we waited to late, so we panicked and took Dexter Jackson. for you.

It may not have been wrong not taking Figurs.  Here is an excerpt from Profootball Weekly:
Leonhard’s emergence as a punt returner, coupled with rookie S Tom Zbikowski’s ability to return kickoffs, casts doubt on the long-term future of WR-RS Yamon Figurs in Baltimore, a source close to the club notes. Figurs has lost both jobs.

Truths:
1.  Never have an argument with an idiot.  They will drag you down to their level and then beat you with their experience.
2.  For some it would be better if they remained silent and be thought a fool than to speak and erase all doubt.

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#21 : January 13, 2009, 10:07:40 AM

I think it's more than "lack of a plan."  The plan isn't hard to see, but it's flawed.  We missed out on Yamon Figurs because we waited to late, so we panicked and took Dexter Jackson.  We failed with Garcia, and now Bruce Allen sounds like he is determined to find the young QB for this team in a year when there is none.  I love the team.  LBs and DB rock.  I believe in Gaines and think it's the talent around him that is the problem.  I like the OL, I think Clayton is a keeper.  The backs are serviceable, but durability is an issue.  QB and DT are the only glaring holes, everything else is fixable.  I just fear we will panic and get the wrong QB,

my main issue with the plan is we havent addressed the cornerstones of our O and D - QB/DT.  hopefully clifton smith has shown the team that there is never any reason to panic.

\"Lets put the O back in Country\"

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#22 : January 13, 2009, 10:16:30 AM

To start, we must analyze whether there is a plan. Of course, this goes in one of two directions.

1. The team has no plan. Some people have been posting this since Bruce Allen took over as GM. I used to read PR all the time and it was always written in the articles/magazine that Allen had a plan. The longer that Allen is the GM and Gruden is the coach of this team, however, the argument becomes stronger that there is actually no plan. Despite the QB situation being the most important position in Gruden's offense and according to Gruden and many others in the game of football, we have not addressed this position with any satisfaction since he's been here. This would tend towards "no plan." Allen is, by my estimation, the most cryptic GM in sports. He doesn't divulge general information in his press conferences, he divulges NO information. As long as he is GM of this team we will hear nothing in the way of a plan or direction for the franchise, nomatter how general. This undoubtedly also leads some to believe that the front office has none.

2. The team has a plan. This is much more interesting to discuss. I find it hard to believe that the team has no plan. What I do find easy to believe is that the team has a poor plan. It's easier to punch holes in the plan that we have seen unfold since Allen took over as GM of the team. In order to further discuss we must assume for the sake of argument that the team has had a plan since Allen took over. When you look at what has happened over the years it's pretty easy to see this: the QB position is seen as a stopgap. Despite the fact that Gruden views the position to be the most important on the field, there has been no effort to secure a young playmaker at the position or to solidify the team for years to come. Instead, we go with free agent retreads to play the position. The team has in the past given lip service to upgrading the position, however, the upgrades have been minimal (Garcia over Griese) and short term (Garcia is 39; how much does he REALLY have left in the tank?). We have passed on numerous QB options in the draft. Aaron Rogers, Brady Quinn, and Brian Brohm quickly come to mind. Two plausible arguments can be made that we weren't in the right situation to draft any of them. One is that they weren't good enough to be picked where we picked or we didn't need them at the time and second is that they would have been making too much money if we picked them (Quinn at #5 overall). I do not find either of these convincing arguments as both Rogers and Quinn eventually went in the first round and Rogers at this point is better than anything we have.

Next we have the drafts/FA in general. Over and over again we were told that the team would need to upgrade the pass rush. In the draft we picked Gaines Adams #4 overall. To me, this is an indication that we did have a plan and that it was to upgrade the pass rush. Unfortunately, thus far Gaines Adams hasn't worked out. In FA we have brought in a number of players to help in this arena. Mostly, though, they haven't helped much. Most of the signings for the DL have been so insignificant that it's hard to remember their names. Wilkerson, Carter, and some LB they called "Predator" in Denver all come to mind. We're still in search of the UT we need for the defense to be successful. We haven't drafted one in the first round since McFarland. I believe the earliest we have spent a pick on that position was an attempt to nab Peterson in the 5th round in recent years. You can correct me if I am wrong. Dre Moore was a 4th rounder but he strikes me as a NT.

The next unit that I think we had a plan to upgrade was the OL. It would have been hard NOT to upgrade the OL that we had in 2005 in the past few years. The first real attempt that Allen made to upgrade the line came immediately when he was signed in 2004. He signed Stuessie and Deese to be our tackles. In actuality the line went backwards from 2003 after these additions and subsequent losses. In the most recent attempt to upgrade the line, we spent a 1st round pick on a guard (Joseph), a high 2nd on a guard (Sears), and a 2nd on a RT (Trueblood). We spent good money on Faine at center in free agency. By my estimation, Faine has not lived up to his billing since being here, and neither have the draft picks spent on the line. It is well known in football circles around the league that LT is the most important position on the line, if not the team (besides QB). Gruden know this because he wrote about it in his book. We have not spent a high pick on a LT since Colmer in 2004. Colmer, by my estimation never played a down for us because he was injured goods. Instead we have squandered premium picks on linemen who don't play premium positions.

Unfortunately, I am running out of time. I want to address at least one more point: the coaching angle. If you want to speculate on a plan, I think you would have to say that the plan in terms of assistant coaches is divided based on offense/defense. On the defensive side of the ball the plan has looked to be hire and sign the absolute best assistants possible. A blunder was made with 2 of those coaches who were fired immediately after serving only one season (Burns and Franklin). We quickly brought back the best assistants we could hire for the defensive side: Raheem Morris and Larry Coyer. Coyer once again was not retained. There has been fairly good turnover in subsequent seasons on the defensive side of the ball after we have struggled. Curiously, this has NOT been the case on offense. With an OL that hasn't lived up to its billing and a offense that stinks at scoring points we have never made a move on Bill Muir. This is one of the largest travesties going. We have replaced the RB coach, Valero, however, we still haven't made any other changes besides promoting Bissacia to RB's coach. Now he handles both ST and the RBs. Why? Isn't that spreading himself a little thin? With a WR unit underperforming, we have kept Mann.

Anyways, I must leave this as is for now. The bottom line, though, I think is that we have a plan: it stinks.

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#23 : January 13, 2009, 10:41:57 AM

The next unit that I think we had a plan to upgrade was the OL. It would have been hard NOT to upgrade the OL that we had in 2005 in the past few years. The first real attempt that Allen made to upgrade the line came immediately when he was signed in 2004. He signed Stuessie and Deese to be our tackles. In actuality the line went backwards from 2003 after these additions and subsequent losses. In the most recent attempt to upgrade the line, we spent a 1st round pick on a guard (Joseph), a high 2nd on a guard (Sears), and a 2nd on a RT (Trueblood). We spent good money on Faine at center in free agency. By my estimation, Faine has not lived up to his billing since being here, and neither have the draft picks spent on the line. It is well known in football circles around the league that LT is the most important position on the line, if not the team (besides QB). Gruden know this because he wrote about it in his book. We have not spent a high pick on a LT since Colmer in 2004. Colmer, by my estimation never played a down for us because he was injured goods. Instead we have squandered premium picks on linemen who don't play premium positions.
One more problem on the offensive line. Poor utilization of existing talent. In 2005 the Bucs were one of the best teams at running to the left. According to Football Outsiders, they were #9 running at left end and #8 running at left tackle. The left tackle was Anthony Davis and left guard was Dan Buenning. In 2006 Davis struggled mightily with pass protection and Buenning got injured. So what do you do with a left tackle that's a good run blocker but poor pass blocker? Not turn him into a right guard where you maximize his strength and minimize his weakness, you put him on the bench, give a 3 year $15 million contract to Luke Petitgout, and use the #20 pick in the draft on a right guard. What do you do with an injured left guard? Not let him heal and put him back in the lineup, you put him on the bench and use the #35 pick in the draft on a new left guard.

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

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#24 : January 13, 2009, 11:11:03 AM

frg - i completely agree.  put it on allen?  gruden?  muir?  or best bet a combination of the 3?

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#25 : January 13, 2009, 11:22:34 AM

Hmmm, I kind of thought the plan came from the top, then the rest work within that plan.

DYK, we have a college football forum... http://www.pewterreport.com/forum/index.php?board=5.0

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#26 : January 13, 2009, 11:39:42 AM

OregonBucFan - Bruce Allen has the final say in the draft room what he says goes. Dexter Jackson was the fastest player available and Allen didn't take into consideration that he is raw speed nothing else. Do we even know if he can catch? Im pretty sure Gruden wanted Brian Brohm in the 2nd but Allen didn't want to move up to obtain him. Things like these make me question who should be in charge.

If this is the case, and none of us really know if it is, let's look at what else was done on draft day 2 2008. Prior to the draft the Bucs seemed fixated on Josh Johnson. So, when the 2nd round came up, if Brian Brohm was a choice of anyone, the Bucs may have passed him over because they felt they could get Johnson later.  So Allen trades down to get another later round pick and then selects Dexter Jackson in the 2nd round. Josh Johnson was a Doug Williams guy, from what we've heard.  I wonder if he may have been a Dexter Jackson guy also.

Happy and Peppy and Bursting with love.

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#27 : January 13, 2009, 11:44:26 AM

With Bruce Allen running things it's hard to fathom that there is no plan. He seems as methodical a person as one can come across. It might not be a good plan, a plan that hasn't worked out or maybe he's TOO methodical but I cannot believe there isn't a plan.

Happy and Peppy and Bursting with love.

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#28 : January 13, 2009, 12:05:02 PM

The problem is the plan looked really, really GOOD at 9-3, and then the next phase of the plan was blown up!



The BUCS are gonna surprise people this year!

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#29 : January 13, 2009, 12:58:13 PM

Well I think we know that as soon as Bruce Allen came in, the plan was to get younger and create some cap space.  He arrived in 2004 and by the 2005 season opener, we no longer had Brad Johnson, Keyshawn Johnson, Keenan McCardell, Joe Jurevicus, Ken Dilger, Cosey Coleman, Roman Oben, Warren Sapp, Dwight Smith, and John Lynch.  We still kept some key guys on the defensive side of the ball, which help keep us competitive, but we did have a lot of turnover once Bruce Allen came in.  Many were on his side as we’ve seen cap room develop and younger players on the team contributing, but no playoff wins in his 5 years here and just 2 playoff appearances only has his blind followers jumping for joy.

Since his arrival, he also has a had a plan for the offensive line, in which we saw high picks used on Chris Colmer, Davin Joseph, Jeremy Trueblood, Arron Sears, Jeremy Zuttah, and Dan Buenning.  2005 picks in Buenning and Colmer are no longer with the team, while the rest remain on the offensive line.  The plan was to have a dominate young offensive line and they have been inconsistent, thus we have to have patience with them.  Or else it seems the high investments we used in 2006, would make that draft a complete debacle. 

Allen does seem to have a blatant disregard for the defensive line though.  We knew that pass rush and run defense was our weaknesses entering the 2007 season.  We did nothing about it, so we figured maybe they would recognize it as a need after the playoff loss.  They didn’t.  We are now praying and hoping they recognize it after the meltdown this season.  So who knows what his plan is like you said, but he did want to come in and blow the roster up and build up the offensive line.  I do know that much. 

Kind of thought we over-reacted there in 2004.  We won the Super bowl in 2002, have a weird 2003 season, still winning 7 games, and losing close ones, then in 2004, we decide we need to start over and get rid of key players.  I just don’t understand it.
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