Archive for category Buccaneers

Late Tuesday News

Sorry for the silence today – massive computer issues here at Blurb Central. Back though and just in time for the Fantasy Sportswriters Association draft I have scheduled for tonight.

We’re back now – although I have to warn you we’re on a short week here on the Blurb as I will be traveling Thursday afternoon and in Las Vegas until Sunday night.

I will refer you to the excellent sites listed to the right for news and notes after Thursday.

Plenty to go until then so:

Seattle Seahawks
Matt Hasselbeck returned to practice, only to have his back seize up again midway through the session. He may not see action again in the next preseason game and as much as I like Hass, this and the battered WR core are not instilling confidence.

Miami Dolphins
So of course yesterday there was this crazy rumor being debated about Ronnie Brown being traded, which came out of Chris Mortenson at ESPN. Now, all I remember last year is Mort throwing rumor after rumor out all last year and few panning out. I have been reminded that he ‘forged close ties with Parcells at ESPN’ but that still doesn’t inspire confidence. Especially now that Phins coach Tony Sparano has come out and said there is ‘no chance’ they trade Brown. I tried to figure out WHY one would trade Brown, and never saw a particular reason that worked for me – clearly neither does Sparano.

Atlanta Falcons
From the ‘it’s about time column’ – The Falcons have finally cut ties with WR Joe Horn who has had his bags packed for several months now. I don’t know where he will catch on, but he was just riding pine in Atlanta. Costly, costly mistake by the Falcons who are still paying off his guarenteed money.

Indianapolis Colts
We have a Manning sighting – he was wearing a sleeve on his knee but he showed up at practice. That *sigh* you heard? Tons of Colts fans and Manning owners. Still some confusion as to when he will play but he looks like he will be good to go Week 1.

Tampa Bay Bucaneers
Jeff Garcia and Joey Galloway returned to practice today. Both might see time in Saturday’s tilt with the Jags. Galloway has been ultra productive given the offense and his age. He may be wearing down so he’s not more than a #3 or 4 – but a very productive one.

That’s all for now – more later tonight and tomorrow morning.

Also tomorrow night – remember to head over to The Thundering Blurb Live Podcast and join in at the chat or call in at (718) 506-1722 and get on the air.

9pm Eastern/ 6pm Pacific

Wednesday Morning Stampede

So FAVREWATCH 2008 is far from over, but we knew that would be the case.

All that and some running back news below for the Morning Stampede…

Green Bay Packers
As was reported yesterday, Favre is probably close to being traded and soon. Both the Jets and Bucs are allegedly interested – the Tampa Tribune says Favre will be a Buc be days end, with Brian Griese heading to Wisconsin to back up Aaron Rodgers (which as I wrote last night, only made sense). Not so fast says Jay Glazer of FoxSports – the NY Jets have offered a much better trade package. Apparently, Favre currently prefers the Bucs, though he is talking to the Jets, and supposedly feels that the Packers are asking too much from the Bucs just because they are a NFC team.

I think this will clear up by Friday, maybe before, but it continues to be somewhat ugly between the Pack and their once favored son.

Both the Bucs and Jets would be good, not great fits, for Favre and neither is a Super Bowl contender though the Bucs seem closer on the surface. Favre may help them make a run while he merely makes the Jets an 8-8 team with Wild Card aspirations. That’s not a slam on Favre – the Jets are just farther away. But you never know.

Either team would put Favre back on the Fantasy radar and make him – at the very least – a #2 QB.

Chicago Bears
Kevin Jones is definitely healing well and while he might still open the season on the PUP list, he is supposedly running close to full speed. He’s been in pads, though sporting a heavy knee brace. It’s the brace that reminds you he is still coming back from a nagging injury and is a guy who the Bears probably picked up more for later in the season. Jones could be a pick during the last half or third of your draft, but you shouldn’t draft him for anything but bench depth. Matt Forte is still the starter and will be for some time, barring him struggling mightily.

San Francisco 49rs
Frank Gore could have a huge season if he is involved in the pass game the way I (and others) suspect he might, yet I still see him slipping late in the 1st round of drafts. Gore has worked hard to get into better shape, including dropping wieght. With the concerns for just about every running back pick after #3 (Westbrook or Peterson, depending on who you ask), Gore is someone to look at closely and consider for your #1 back.

Most of the 49rs have a long way to go to prove themselves fantasy worthy and Gore could still face 8 man fronts if Martz’s offense struggles. But Gore has faced them before and done well. Dropping the weight and getting into better shape will hopefully keep him healthier and get rid of nagging injuries that have plagued him for his career.

Pittsburgh Steelers
Just when we thought Fast Willie Parker had lost his goal line touches for good with the drafting of Rashard Mendenhall – not so fast. According to HC Mike Tomlin (by way of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ), Parker is once again under consideration for goal line duties. Now, I need to look into this but this may be a sign Mendenhall is struggling a little in camp. I’ll see what I can find out. Parker will get you the yards – but his touchdowns were completely absent last year and it killed his owners. If he can get even a few more goal line touches, it would really help his value to you. I have been, and still do, assume that the rookie Mendenhall will get a ton of short yardage looks, including in the red zone. Parker hasn’t got the size for it and concern still is he might wear down. But he has been effective on occasion and could be again if the offensive line is back on it’s game. That was the biggest problem last year – the Ol-ine struggled as much as he did.

He’s your rock solid RB2 – with a ton of upside if this plays out.

That’s all for now – more later.

Favre to Bucs – Garcia to Packers?

Hey guys

In case you were asleep, Adam Shefter says the Packers have placed Favre on the declared non-injury inactive list and told him once and for all – no, you cannot get your release. They are talking to the Bucs and Favre is thinking it over. And of course we have talked about what this could mean for Favre and the Bucs – but what about a wrinkle?

Could Garcia be a part going back to the Pack?

Let’s face it, the Pack has very shaky QB depth behind Rodgers who has a bit of an injury history. They need a veteran back-up and I was shocked they didn’t pursue one. So why not?

Well, Garcia still thinks he can start. He can. too. Maybe he can gamble that Rodgers will not work out or get hurt, but I doubt he’d be happy. On the other hand – well rotoworld put it better than I ever could -

….and Jeff Garcia would certainly throw a hissy fit to be remembered.

I think Garcia could do well in Green Bay but he may not go. I would think Brian Griese or Chris Simms will be more likely.

But anyway, I thought it an interesting notion. Jets are also getting mentioned a lot on NFL Total Access.

Jeff Garcia Hurt

Just saw this item at TampaBay.com.

Looks like self-proclaimed ‘I am the starting quarterback’ Jeff Garcia is pranged up.

We don’t know how serious – if at all – it is right now but if he’s even kinda hurt…..

How bad would the Bucs want Favre?

I think Gruden would do everything he could to get the soon-to-be-ex-Packer. Something will happen and it looks liek the Pack is talking or considering talking to the Bears or Vikings. If the Bucs made a strong offer, the Packers would probably try to move him there to avoid the nightmare of a trade within the division…

I’ll report back on more as I hear it…..

Tuesday Wrap Up

A few notes to end the Tuesday Camps – and remember – The Thundering Blurb goes live at 6pmPST/9pm EST tomorrow!

Jacksonville Jaguars
Reggie Williams hurt himself again today, re-injuring his knee (recently sprained) and being carted off the field. Did I mention enough lately that I dislike Williams and think Mike Walker, John Broussard and almost anyone else in the core. Again, Marcedes Lewis looks good to me as well.

New Orleans Saints
Sedrick Ellis has finally signed and should be in camp. If he can catch up, he can still make an impact off and on during the season and might work as a bye week filler guy on your IDP squad.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Cowboys are still interested in Chris Simms but the Bucs are still asking for too much. Would that change if they acquired Favre. we may soon find out. The Cowboys certainly would be happy to upgrade the #2 slot from Brad Johnson.

Buffalo Bills
JP Losman jammed his right thumb – for those of you who thought he might sneak in and be a fantasy force…. all two of you in the Buffalo/Canada area….

Thats all for now – see you tomorrow!

FavreWatch 2008

I feel like I need to be standing in a downpour with no umbrella, no hat and no jacket discussing flooding – which is a reference only my fellow SoCal folks might get.

With Packers camp a day away, the Packers are allegedly trying to finish the Favre saga (or part 1, as you and I both know this story will never completely go away).

ProFootballTalk is reporting that Jay Glazer at FoxSports is saying that the Tampa Bay Bucs have been given permission to talk to his Favreness to work out a trade. This comes on the heels of an earlier ESPN report that my beloved Jets were given permission to talk to him.

It seems like the Packers are trying their best to work this out prior to tomorrow and it comes down to this – does Brett want to play or play for the Packers? If he wants to play and (aside from contending) doesn’t care where, we’ll see a trade I think sometime in the next week or so. If he wants to remain a Packer though – and he might – all he needs to do is show up in camp and play like he did in 2007.

Of course, that’s a mess for the Pack, no doubt, but that’s kinda where it stands. If Favre really is the complete prima donna he has appeared to be at many moments in this ridiculous mess, then he could go to camp, sulk and try to make them release him or make a stupid trade to somewhere like the Vikes. I’m hoping that isn’t the case and the last few weeks are merely a bunch of bad moves by someone who has let his passion run away with him.

As for the Bucs vs the Jets -

Favre would certainly pick up the Tampa offense a little quicker, though the West Coast the Jets run wouldn’t be a stretch. HC Mangini says he’s happy with the QBs on their roster yada yada but 1) that’s coachspeak and is worth less than the current value of the US Dollar and 2) he’s on the hotseat, the Jets spent LOADs of cash to win now so 3) they would LOVE to have Favre. As much as it would screw with the Clemens/Pennington Debate – I think they would care. They can sort that out next year in a way I think the packers don’t feel they can.

Tampa Bay would be good as well, and not just for the aforementioned ability for Favre to get the offense quick. While the recievers aren’t as good (aside from Galloway – I’ll put Coles/Cotchery against any Bucs combo) Gruden works magic with older QBs. He could be very successful there if the Oline holds together (you could say that last part abotu the Jets as well). He could mentor Josh Johnson as I think he’s a few years away from playing, although we’ve seen how that worked out in Green Bay.

I think either of these would be a very good fit and I think if Brett wants to play – and wants to gracefully exit the mess he has created most of – he should work things out with one of those teams.

And soon.

Join us again later for BRETTWATCH!
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Comments, queries, confusion may be posted below or sent to ThunderingBlurb@gmail.com.

The Ernest Graham Hour

I think a few more notes about Graham in the next few days and he WILL deserve his own show here at the Blurb.

According to PewterReport.com, not only is Graham’s overall money lower than expected, but there is absolutely no guaranteed money or Guara as I believe Jeff Ellis of NFL Rants and Raves calls it.

Further, Graham is only making 1.5 million this year (just being a relative term for you and me – and still better than the 605k the former undrafted free agent was scheduled to make this year.

He gets a million dollar bonus if he makes the roster, which he really should. With Caddy still rehabbing and Dunn old, well, Graham is still the main man.

Sure makes you wonder more about those Kevin Jones to Tampa rumors I talked about yesterday though, huh? Maybe they aren’t all that sold on Graham.

Small payout, no guarenteed money……..

Think about it. I will and I’ll keep you posted.

PS – finished up Greg Kellogg’s show for FFReport – will post a link of 2 hours of goodness for you all tomorrow.

Follow up on ‘If a Kevin Jones Works out….’

So Sunday I wrote about Kevin Jones working out with several teams and wondering which of those teams might sign him.

Adam Shefter of NFLN has added a monkey to the wrench, if you will. According to his report, Kevin Jones is eying the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a landing point.

On the one hand I wonder at the wording – he’s eying the Bucs but are they eying him?

But on the serious side of things, you have to assume, as Shefter does, that it makes some sense for the Bucs. Sure, they just signed Ernest Graham to a 3 year, 10.5 million dollar deal. But as we pointed out Sunday, Graham has all of one year as a starter and that’s not much of a track record. Jones plays well, he just has been misused (my opinion)and had some bad injuries (fact).

If he does sign there? I assume the Bucs let him heal for a bunch of games, then ease him in.

For you Fantasy Football players, it really screws with the Bucs RB fantasy value until it shakes it self out.

Of course, as I pointed out – Shefter says Jones is eying the Bucs. But not if the Bucs are really eying Jones.

I’ll keep you posted…..

Josh Johnson – future star or one more Qb for Gruden to break?

Like many of the Draftguys, I’ve got some severe man-love for former University of San Diego and current Tampa Bay Buccaneer QB Josh Johnson. It’s not hard to see why – the man only threw 15 INTs his whole college career while amassing 113 TDs and 9,699 yards with a QB rating of 68%. Heck, last year alone, he tossed 43 TDs and only 1 INT.

Sure, he played against lesser competition. But even the best QBs against so-so competition will have SOMETHING go wrong. A receiver goes the wrong way. You don’t see a blitz. Someone gets lucky in the secondary. Heck, you just mess up.

That didn’t happen to Johnson last year. And not only did he only have it all go to hell ONCE, but he completed 2/3rds of his passes. Of the 301 passes he threw, 206 were caught. I don’t care if it’s Pee Wee, that’s impressive.

And he’s fast. So if you look at him:
Good Arm + Accurate Arm + Mobile and Fast feet = Solid Potential.

Now he’s in Tampa Bay and people are falling all over themselves. Jon Gruden, they say, will mold him and unlock his potential.

Can I ask you something? When was the last time Gruden molded a young QB successfully? He and Simms don’t get along. Gradkowski? No longer there. Sure, Gruden has a football QB camp, but it’s a different thing to be someone’s boss than camp counselor.

Look at his record – who has Gruden succeeded with? With the Raiders, he drove Rich Gannon to career highs (only for him to fold against Gruden in the Super Bowl. And who was the QB of that Super Bowl? A Youngster? No, just journeyman Brad Johnson.) He struggled with Simms (even before the damage to Simms’ spleen put him on the bench) and finally found passing success again with who? Jeff Garcia.

I see a trend here.

I am in no way saying Chucky can’t coach a young QB. In fact, I have heard more than one thing that says he can. BUT – and this is huge – young QBs can have fragile egos. They can take criticism more personally than intended and frankly, on occasion fold. I mean, these guys – many of them – were BMOCs all through college. Them doing something incorrectly? WHAT?

Johnson strikes me as a smart dude and a strong character guy. We all know Chucky Gruden can be….. abrasive I guess. I think these two could very well get along – Johnson ignoring some of the barbs and tone, Gruden focusing on improving a very strong player.

But only time will tell. I’m very interested to read up on this coupling over the next year or so. Garcia won’t be around forever. Simms is on his way out. Brian Griese is a billion years old. Gradkowski is gone baby gone.

The future of the Bucs QB position is in Josh Johnson’s able hands.

Now if only he and Gruden can get along well enough to unlock the potential.