NFL players in contract years have had good runs of success recently, including even some for the Buccaneers.
Last year running back Doug Martin parlayed an excellent 2015 season into a multi-million dollar payday, and while deep down Bucs nose tackle Akeem Spence – who is entering the final year of his initial rookie deal – would like to do the same, but he isn’t stressing out about it.
“Pretty much I just want to come into training camp healthy, have a great camp and from there just build on it from there,” Spence said. “I can’t just look at it as a contract year – yes I want to be great – but I want to just stay within myself and if I have a great year like I am planning things will take care of itself.”
Part of Spence’s confidence heading into 2016 is the new style of defense. Recently Spence spoke to PewterReport.com about his excitement level with the new scheme.
“It is through the roof,” Spence said. “I can tell you all of us up front especially are excited. The young guys like Noah Spence coming in and then just this defense. Lots of different pieces, a lot of different looks we are showing people. Guys are really excited about it and we are out here (during mini-camp) giving our offense fits with the different looks.
Spence continued on.
“That is me tipping my hat to coach (Mike) Smith and the staff. We have been able to learn this defense twice from OTAs to mini-camp. Guys are picking it up well. Learning the rules and now we are just rolling. Now we are playing ball. Now we can fine tune it. We have six weeks off, then we come back for training camp, fine tune it and start playing ball games.”
It isn’t just the fans who have high expectations for the Bucs in 2016, the players themselves are also believing they can make a run this season. And Spence wants to be a part of things for years to come.
“I would love to stay in Tampa, I have been here helping to build this thing and definitely want to see this thing through all the way.”