New Bucs DT Henry Melton met with the media on Thursday afternoon at One Buc Place for the first time and talked about a number of subjects, including his relationship with Gerald McCoy and Lovie Smith and also shared his thoughts on his decision to come to Tampa Bay as a free agent.
Below is a transcript of Melton’s time at the podium.
“I am just excited to be here and ready to turn this thing around.”
(On his relationship with Lovie Smith)
““He brought me in as a converted running back and saw me and groomed me, he and Rod Marinelli groomed me into a pretty dominant undertackle. As soon as he heard I might hit the (open) market he was definitely one of the first people to get in contact and I came out here and had to make it happen.”
(On his reasoning for wanting to come to Tampa Bay)
“A lot of things honestly. The system; I already know the system and what it demands. I know a lot of the guys here, from down to trainers all the way up to the head coach and it made for a pretty easy decision.”
(On if playing besides Gerald McCoy was an incentive)
Of course. Me and Gerald became pretty good friends at the Pro Bowl a couple years ago and we have always kept in contact. I was about to be a free agent then and we talked about joining forces, but it didn’t work out. But (this year) we had an opportunity to make it happen. He texted me and we have been texting and he was real excited to hear the news.”
(On why he singed just a one-year deal)
“I just really wanted to really show what I could do again and that I still have some juice and I just wanted to come here and help turn this thing around and prove I can get it done.”
(On former and now current teammate Chris Conte)
“I always talked to Chris, even when we were in Chicago that is where I (became) his friend. He is a hard-nosed guy, he’s not going to shy away from contact and he is a playmaker. When he first came in and has been starting ever since. This is a great pickup for the Bucs.”
(His impressions of the Buccaneers)
“Honestly I thought they were a good team, but that is just how football is. We had a few games I remember in Chicago and a couple games can go your way or they can’t. If you have the guys to finish it off and you find some guys to make that last play at the end, that is going to be key. I saw a lot of potential in this team. They are real close. They were telling me they lost a lot of games by a few points, but that is how it is. Everyone is trying to win games in this league and everyone is good. So if we get some more of those wins they missed out on last year then I think we will be in great shape.”
(More thoughts on Lovie Smith)
“He is just a great guy. He is not going to yell at you – he might yell at you – but he’s not going to cuss at you or say anything foul to your face. He is going to get straight to the point. I grew really close to him when I was in Chicago and when he got fired we embraced each other and then he said you never know what is going to happen, we might meet up down the road somewhere, and here we are.”
(Talking about former teammate and now Bucs’ LB Bruce Carter)
“Bruce is a good friend also. We were on the same flight from Dallas. We didn’t even know each other was going. I was like, ‘You’re going to Tampa?’ He was like, ‘Yeah.’ I was like, ‘Cool! Let’s do this.’ And we talked about it then. I know he can play and he knows I can play and it is always good to know whoever is behind you can get in that gap and make a play.”
(On playing NT as opposed to undertackle)
“It is not my position but I can do it. From when I first came in and was trying to find my spot in the rotation I had to play every position. I had to play some end this year for Dallas, a couple games. I just get in where I fit in. If they say they need someone to work on this guy and you have a favorable matchup, I do it.”
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sounds like a good fit and very positive attitude. Something he will need if we don’t fix the O-Line. Plenty of time to find some help on our O-Line. Like this signing!
I think we’re going for our own version of the All-Madden team of 1988…10 DTs and Mike Singletary…
I know that Henry was a great talented project pick from Lovie’s Bears days. I’m wondering if they might try him at De?
Our starting Dline could look like Morgan-McDonald-McCoy-Melton . . . then on passing and long yardage downs, we can throw in Smith and Fatinikun, English and even Golston.
Flash- Players mentioned above aren’t keeping qb’s up at night except for McCoy who else is that scary? Mcdonald and his 5 sacks?
“vaughn mcclure @vxmcclure23
Initial word I’m hearing is Derrick Morgan not signing with Bucs”
. . . o.k. George Selvie!
Good depth move but honestly Melton isn’t good enough to turn this thing around although I love his positive attitude and confidence
Iam so glad that Melton id finally here after not getting him last year. I have been traveling the last two days Iam so glad that Tampa has gotten some holes filled this year Go Bucs.I’m waiting to see if the RB from Minnesota will sign with Tampa=GO BUCS
No problem with this as he’s cap friendly.
I think now that he’s got a yr under his belt, from knee surgery, he’ll be back to his pro bowl self. I like how he wants to prove himself, then make us have to make a tough decision if he does in fact get back to his pro bowl form. I love him as a rotational guy at the least,and at 28 yrs old, still has plenty left.
Sounds good, pick up Hardy to round out the line and I think we’ll be in business
If Gholston is healthy this year he can fill the other DE position a lot better than Johnson could. I like Melton and we needed another Good DT so we can rotate in players and keep the pressure on the opposing offense. Great to have an experienced MLB who knows our system too. Our defense should be set now. Another DE would just be gravy.
Sounds like a good pick up to me also. Knowing McCoy’s injury history he might add a little extra insurance at UT if Gerald should ever go down again. The NFL is tough on everyone and nobody is truly Superman.
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