Josh McCown may still be referred to as Tampa Bay’s starting quarterback throughout the halls of One Buc Place, but it’s likely Mike Glennon’s offense to lead for the time being.
Head coach Lovie Smith still stuck to his M.O. of revealing as little as possible when asked who would be under center Sunday afternoon, but did say there’s a “good chance” it would be Glennon. “Which quarterback will we start this week? There’s a good chance it will be Mike Glennon. I like to stay with my standard way of doing things and not talk about starting lineups before facing an opponent. But Mike took the reps today.”
After taking over for an injured and ineffective McCown during last Thursday’s disaster in Atlanta, Glennon said Wednesday that he’s ready to seize the moment this weekend in Pittsburgh and hopefully come back with the team’s first win.
“It’s always a huge opportunity when you get to play a game in the NFL,” Glennon said. “My focus, though, is just getting our first win. That’s where my mindset is at – to go up there and get a win and help the team any way I can.”
The second-year signal caller out of North Carolina State got a little more than two quarters of action last week to knock off any lingering rust from holding clipboards since the preseason. Glennon turned in a decent, but far-from-clean performance, finishing 17 of 24 for 121 yards and a late touchdown while adding 19 yards on three scrambles. But he also slung around two balls that could have been picked off, took a pair of sacks and had some snap problems with center Evan Dietrich-Smith.
As for that latter issue, Dietrich-Smith wrote it off as one of the many errors that tend to snowball when a team’s getting frustrated and embarrassed, not to mention while on national television.
“Stuff like that happens in the game,” the veteran center said. “A lot of things really weren’t going well in that game. Things tend to happen, but we’ve got a week to work on it and we’ll get it figured out and make sure that stuff doesn’t happen.”
Dietrich-Smith wasn’t in Tampa Bay to witness Glennon’s trial-by-fire maturation during last season’s final 13 games, but says he’s already seen enough to feel comfortable with who’s standing behind him on Sunday.
“I’ve had a pretty good impression of Mike ever since I got here. He’s a smart football player, he’s got a good strong arm, he’s been learning a lot from Josh, he always beats me in here every morning. He’s one of those guys that’s first guy in, last guy out. He does his homework and makes sure he’s prepared to play the game. Even when he wasn’t playing he was preparing like he had to play, which is what you should be doing as a player.”
Similar to last year, Glennon is thrust into action Sunday after beginning the year on the bench. In 2013 he nearly led the Bucs to a Week 4 home win against Arizona but committed three turnovers that contributed to a 13-10 defeat. His 55.7 quarterback rating that afternoon eventually improved to an 83.9 mark over 13 games.
Having that year of game action under his belt paid dividends, Glennon said, making him all the more prepared for what each week brings in 2014.
“Without a doubt,” Glennon said. “Last year at this exact same time was when they announced me as the starter. I didn’t know what to expect then. I know what it’s like to play now. I know what it’s like to go out there and get hit by the defensive linemen, I know what it’s like to throw a touchdown and everything in between. I’m a lot more confident and a lot more comfortable than last year.”
As for how long Glennon will be behind the wheel of the Bucs’ offense, the team continues to say McCown holds the keys or deflect related questions. When asked about his role beyond Sunday, Glennon simply responded: “That hasn’t been discussed.”
Good strong arm but not accurate. Better used for the check down approach.
Right now everyone believes we have two back up Q.B.’s in McCown, and Glennon. If Mike proves that ture, he’s younger, let him back up Mariota next year.
My first play would be a 15-20 yard pass; followed up with the same thing regardless whether the first one was completed or not. Go Bucs!
I’ll cheer for Mike Glennon to succeed as I have for every young QB who has trotted onto the field basking in the fans inflated expectations since Randy “Why Not Minot” Hedberg. Like everyone else, I think it’s vital for the organization to see what it has at the position and not waste time hoping McCown recaptures his spurt of success a season ago. I suspect Glennon will be given the reigns until the bye week; which should allow McCown time to heal sufficiently. Not so many check-downs and a little more zip on his passes will help him keep the job. Good luck Mike!
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