With E.J. Wilson on injured reserve and Roy Miller still day-to-day, the Buccaneers added former Buffalo Bill 2006 first-rounder John McCargo to provide depth on the defensive line.
Walking off the field breathing heavy and wiping the sweat from his forehead, newly signed defensive lineman John McCargo took a few minutes to speak with the local media and PewterReport.com about his excitement to be in Tampa.
“This scheme is like when I was in college [N.C. State] with Chuck Amato [former head coach in college], “ McCargo said. “A penetrating 4-3 defense. That is what I excelled in when in college. So I’m looking forward to playing a couple games in it.”
McCargo, who turned 28 on Friday, is listed at 6-foot-2 and weighs 307 pounds. He was the second of two first-round picks for the Bills in 2006 and had a very disappointing five-year tenure in Buffalo. According to NFL.com, McCargo has totaled 47 tackles, five passes defensed, 2.5 sacks and one forced fumble while playing in 40 games with just one career start.
Last season the Buffalo Bills went to a three-man front and McCargo suffered trying to adapt.
“I’m definitely more comfortable in a 4-3,” McCargo said. “I didn’t really play that much in Buffalo in the 3-4, so I didn’t really feel it was a scheme to fit me. I like the defense here. I like the coaching staff. I think it is a great situation with me just coming down here, getting in shape and getting used to the heat because Buffalo is a lot different. [I] just want to go out here and make some plays. I’m used to this 4-3 defense.”
Injuries plagued McCargo in Buffalo, and while he says he is healthy, there were other factors that hindered his ability to live up to his first-round draft status. McCargo took the blame for those.
“I feel 100 percent, I haven’t been injured in three years,” McCargo said. “I definitely feel like I’m 100 percent healthy. No injuries here. I’m getting there [physical shape]. You can’t really be in football shape. You have to be out here and get used to playing. You can try. But coming out here everyday is the only thing that is going to get you into shape.”
“It's in the past. I can only blame myself for that situation. It wasn’t what I expected. But I’m going to leave the past in the past and look forward to a fresh start. I feel like I have tried to make some chances. Do some things better. I feel I may have made some mistakes up there [in Buffalo]. When you get a second chance you don’t want to go into new situations making the same mistakes. I’m trying to get over that. Hopefully revive my career back.”
With two preseason games already in the books, the former N.C State star knows he has some catching up to do.
Yeah I do think I’m behind the eight-ball,” McCargo said. “Going into my sixth-year you have to be ready to adapt in any situation and be ready to go. That’s what they pay you for. That’s why you are a professional. You have to get in here and get things going quick. So I’m going to try my best to get in here and get things going as quick as possible.”
Helping him with the catch up process is new defensive line coaches Keith Millard and Grady Stretz. McCargo is impressed with Millard already.
“He is a good coach,” McCargo said. “I had a chance to talk to him for about two hours yesterday and we went over the defense and plays. I love the scheme and I’m definitely excited to be coached by him.”
With E.J. Wilson placed on injured reserve and Roy Miller still hampered by a knee injury, depth on the defensive line was a concern according to Raheem Morris who commented on the McCargo signing Sunday afternoon in his daily after practice press conference.
“He is a guy that has been followed since 2006,” Morris said. “Mark Dominick did a lot of work on him and Keith Millard had some familiarity with him from where he was in 2006. He is a guy we worked out yesterday and he did a nice job in his workout; looked good moving. And he has filled a role that we can use right now with the injury to E.J. [Wilson] going on IR.
“I expect Miller back in a couple days, he has been a day-to-day deal. So it wasn’t about Miller but more about losing E.J. and just wanting to finish the preseason. Get another guy that adds to the competition. I’d like to look at the tape of his first practice today. I’m interested to see that. But he is another guy we will add to the mix.”
Copyright © 2011 Pewter Report, PewterReport.com and Pewter Insider. All rights reserved. PewterReport.com, the official site of Pewter Report, is an independent source of news and commentary and is not affiliated with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or the NFL.