Bucs Monday Mailbag: When Will Gronk Return?

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Pewter Report’s Scott Reynolds solutions your questions from the @PewterReport Twitter account every week within the Bucs Monday Mailbag. Submit your query to the Bucs Monday Mailbag every week through Twitter utilizing the hashtag #PRMailbag. Listed here are the questions we selected to reply for this week’s version.

QUESTION: The final report I noticed the Bucs had about $12 million in cap room. Are they saving it for Gronk? In that case, when’s one of the best guess on when he indicators? Earlier than coaching camp or in the midst of it?

ANSWER: The Bucs are $10.67 million below the cap, in line with OverTheCap.com. That features Akiem Hicks’ $2.39 million cap hit for 2022 along with his one-year deal. And sure, a few of that cap area will getting used for tight finish Rob Gronkowski when he re-signs with the crew.

There may be an outdoor likelihood he may signal quickly and participate within the Bucs’ three-day necessary mini-camp. The guess right here is that he doesn’t signal with the crew till proper earlier than coaching camp begins the final week of July. At age 33, Gronkowski wants the offseason to recharge and equipment up mentally for what might be his final season.

As a result of he’s not below contract, there is no such thing as a assure that Gronkowski will again this 12 months. However one must assume he would have given normal supervisor Jason Licht, head coach Todd Bowles and quarterback Tom Brady the heads up some time again if that wasn’t the case. The Bucs waited till the fourth spherical to draft a good finish in Cade Otton. If Gronk was going to retire, the crew would have used a extra premium choose on a good finish or signed one in free company.

QUESTION: Assuming that Gronk resigns within the coming weeks, do you assume that this roster is now higher on paper than the one from final 12 months? Adjustments famous under:

QB: Similar

RB: Out – Ronald Jones II / In – Rachaad White

WR: Out – Antonio Brown / In – Russell Gage

TE: Out – O.J. Howard / In – Cade Otton

OL: Out – Ali Marpet & Alex Cappa / In – Shaq Mason & Luke Goedeke

DL: Out – Ndamukong Suh & Steve McClendon / In – Logan Corridor & Akiem Hicks

LB: Out – Kevin Minter

DB: Out – Jordan Whitehead / In – Logan Ryan, Keanu Neal & Zyon McCollum

ANSWER: Effectively carried out with the personnel checklist! It’s onerous to gauge rookies as a result of generally it takes a 12 months or two for them to develop. Corridor of Famer Warren Sapp had three sacks his rookie season and was hardly the QB Killa in 1995. Fellow Bucs Ring of Honor member Ronde Barber was terrible as a rookie in 1997. He was so dangerous that the Bucs drafted one other cornerback, Brian Kelly, within the second spherical in 1998 to probably change him.

Bucs DT Akiem Hicks

Bucs DT Akiem Hicks – Photograph by: USA At this time

So, loads of this premise is dependent upon how effectively Logan Corridor, Luke Goedeke, Rachaad White and Cade Otton play this season. I feel there is perhaps an opportunity that the 2022 Bucs might be higher. However given the issue of this 12 months’s schedule and going through eight playoff groups from a 12 months in the past, successful 13 video games once more is perhaps a stretch.

That mentioned, I agree with all the strikes normal supervisor Jason Licht and his employees have made this offseason. From the re-signings and free agent additions to the 2022 draft class, Tampa Bay added some actually gifted gamers. I feel the place this 12 months’s crew is perhaps higher is its depth. It’s not a lot Shaq Mason being higher than Alex Cappa at proper guard. Logan Ryan is healthier than backup cornerback/security Ross Cockrell. Keanu Neal is healthier than reserve security Andrew Adams. Akiem Hicks is healthier than Steve McLendon.

That was the noticeable key to the 2002 Bucs successful the Tremendous Bowl. Tampa Bay had loads of A-level expertise in Sapp, Barber, Derrick Brooks, John Lynch, Mike Alstott and Simeon Rice. It was changing some C-level expertise with B-level expertise that acquired the Bucs over the hump. Suppose Shelton Quarles changing Jamie Duncan at center linebacker. It was Greg Spires changing Marcus Jones at left defensive finish. It was Kerry Jenkins changing Randall McDaniel at left guard. I feel the Bucs have made a few of these sorts of replacements this offseason. Time will inform.

QUESTION: Give us one Buccaneer who will find yourself being a shock starter after coaching camp has settled.

ANSWER: That’s an actual powerful query. I feel the one 4 beginning roles which are would possibly even be up for grabs are nickel cornerback, robust security, left guard and 3-technique defensive deal with. Sean Murphy-Bunting is coming into a contract 12 months and can get the primary shot at maintaining his slot cornerback function. If he falters, it might be Logan Ryan who steps in and will get the job.

The identical situation may occur at robust security with Mike Edwards. He’s in a contract 12 months and shall be given the primary likelihood to interchange Jordan Whitehead. Keanu Neal is the security internet – actually – if Edwards can’t measure up.

Would it not be a shock if second-round choose Luke Goedeke wins the beginning left guard job? Would it not be a shock if he didn’t? Aaron Stinnie is aware of the offense and has some NFL beginning expertise. I feel Goedeke in the end will get the job. However will or not it’s in August – or later?

Logan Corridor was drafted to be the 3-technique defensive deal with and change Ndamukong Suh. It’s onerous for rookie defensive tackles to come back in and succeed proper off the bat. The crew needs Corridor to start out. If, for some cause, he struggles early on, the Bucs may flip to new addition Akiem Hicks to start out and rotate Corridor into the combination for some expertise.

QUESTION: For us Bucs followers that don’t have time to look at children play on Saturday or wade in draft-speak, what can we realistically anticipate early on from our high draft choose Logan Corridor?

ANSWER: Truthful query. Defensive deal with Logan Corridor registered six of his seven sacks on the College of Houston final 12 months as a junior. He burst onto the scene as one of many higher inside go speeding defensive linemen in 2021. At 6-foot-6, 290 kilos (he performed at 270 final 12 months), the Bucs have referred to as Corridor a prototype for a 3-4 protection. Here’s what Bucs head coach Todd Bowles has needed to say about Corridor this offseason.

Bucs DT Logan Hall

Bucs DT Logan Corridor – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

“It’s very uncommon you will get a 6-foot-6 [defensive] lineman today. All of them transfer to the offensive line. If you will get a prototype, Calais Campbell-type, Will Gholston-type – a man that may bat down balls and continues to be athletic sufficient to do all of the stuff you want him to do – you need the size.”

Bowles went on to remark about Corridor’s athleticism. He ran a 4.88 within the 40-yard sprint on the NFL Scouting Mix, a 7.25 within the three-cone drill (ninetieth percentile) and a 4.44 within the 20-yard shuttle (88th percentile).

“Effectively, we like his athleticism,” Bowles mentioned. “He’s studying play along with his pads decrease – taking up double groups and understanding when to drop his knee and never simply bouncing up and speeding the passer. However he’s an excellent athlete. We haven’t had that type of athlete inside shortly – since we’ve been right here. We simply look ahead to him getting higher scheme-wise after which profiting from his athleticism.”

Whereas Bucs defensive finish Will Gholston may need been an enormous excessive when saying that Corridor is extra athletic than J.J. Watt in his prime, he did forecast six sacks for the rookie. That appears extra affordable.

QUESTION: You seen final week that Kyle Trask appeared to be taking extra dangers and Blaine Gabbert tended to be making secure throws. Was this coach’s instructions to the gamers, and fewer a sign of the QBs tendencies?

ANSWER: That’s an attention-grabbing query as a result of there might be a number of solutions. Enjoying quarterback boils down to 2 issues. First, make sufficient performs to win the sport. Second, don’t make errors that may price your crew an opportunity to win. Veteran Blaine Gabbert has years of enjoying expertise within the NFL and has made his share of performs and errors. I feel each he and the teaching employees are searching for him to keep away from making errors with the soccer in apply.

That’s why Gabbert appears to be locked in on tight finish Cameron Brate, an skilled goal with good palms, throughout the OTAs. Oftentimes, Brate is the precise learn for Gabbert as a result of he’s open and can catch the ball. Understand that the Bucs have been with out receivers Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Russell Gage, in addition to tight finish Rob Gronkowski this offseason. That’s why Brate has gotten the lion’s share of targets from Gabbert in apply.

As for Trask, he must show that he can do each – make performs and keep away from errors. He’s coming into his second 12 months and has barely performed. Apply is the place interceptions can and will occur. It’s the place quarterbacks can check their arm power and velocity on sure throws to see if they will match passes into tight home windows. Trask has been in a position to try this and use OTAs like a lab for experiments. That’s what each the coaches – and Trask himself – need and have to see.

On the identical time, Trask is battling for the No. 2 QB job with Gabbert. So, he needs to be cautious and calculated with simply what number of possibilities he takes throughout apply. If Trask is on the market slinging 2-3 interceptions a day throughout the OTAs, the teaching employees is just not going to have the arrogance in him to be the backup quarterback. So, Trask has to stroll a tightrope on this space – all whereas growing chemistry with receivers that Gabbert has been throwing to for years in apply. And in addition attempting to develop chemistry with rookies that he’s by no means thrown the ball to earlier than.