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February 6, 2010 @ 4:06 am
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New Bucs QBs Coach Already Has Goals For Freeman

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Alex Van Pelt said Josh Freeman has the size, arm strength and poise in the pocket to become an elite NFL quarterback.

But he believes the Freeman's voice doesn't just need to be heard in the Bucs' huddle.

"I think the first thing you have to discuss is your philosophy,'' said Van Pelt, the Bucs' new quarterbacks coach. 

"We want him to complete 65 percent of his passes. We need him to do that and he has to get the ball to his play-makers. But what I'm talking about is to let him know exactly what we're looking for, what we need him to do.

"You can improve accuracy by incorporating drills that put pressure on him to make decisions quickly. But he needs to be the first guy in the building. It's the leadership aspect we need from him. He needs to be more vocal with teammates in and out of the huddle.''

Van Pelt, 39, spent 15 seasons with the Buffalo Bills as either a quarterback or assistant coach. But he also soaked up some lessons backing up quarterbacks like Joe Montana in Kansas City and Jim Kelly in Buffalo.

"I took away some things, especially from the great ones I played behind like Montana and Kelly,'' Van Pelt said. "It's how important it is for the quarterback to lead the team. You're the face of the franchise. And you have to lead not just with work ethic. But I'm very excited to get to work with Josh.''

Source: St. Petersburg Times - Rick Stroud

PewterReport.com's Take: It's good to see new Bucs quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt is already getting his hands dirty at One Buccaneer Place. His work ethic is one of the things that attracted the Bucs to Van Pelt. Josh Freeman probably deserves more credit for his leadership skills. He was a leader in the huddle and led by example by working hard behind the scenes, especially once he was promoted to starter. However, Van Pelt likely is stressing the importance of Freeman becoming more of a vocal leader because the Bucs sorely lacked one en route to their 3-13 season in 2009.

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