Jul 25, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end William Gholston (92) practices during training camp at One Buccaneer Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Preseason Week Three Report Card: How the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Graded Out Against the Dolphins

The hysteria of the weekend among Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans has been over the performance of Josh Freeman. And since we’ve already taken the time to look at every time Josh Freeman dropped back to pass and posted our thoughts on the site (you can find that here), let’s move on to the rest of the team, where we find some impressive, and not so impressive, performances.

(All grades obtained from Pro Football Focus. Subscription required, and highly recommended! Check them out by clicking here.)

Defense

Let’s start with the good news, which mostly comes from the defensive side of the ball. Mark Barron posted the highest grade on the defense with a 2.6 overall grade, thanks to 4 tackles, 2 assisted tackles, and 3 “stops” (which is defined as a solo tackle that results in an offensive failure). He was targeted twice while covering Charles Clay and held him to 1 catch for 5 yards, and he received credit for a pass defended on the other target.

William Gholston also posted an impressive grade of 2.1, thanks to stout run defense a 2 total pressures as a pass rusher.

Aug 16, 2013; Foxborough, MA, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Akeem Spence (97) on the sideline during the second quarter against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Trevor Scott and Da’Quan Bowers also had good nights at defensive end, posting a 1.9 and 1.1 respectively. Scott had a fantastic night rushing the passer, but struggled against the run. Bowers had a generally solid night all around.

Rookie nose tackle Akeem Spence continues to shine, as he posted a 3.2 grade in run defense. He lost points for not contributing to the pass rush, and for the one play he was considered to be in pass coverage, but his 4 tackles all were “stops” which caused the offense to fail to gain a successful amount of yards.

On the negative side of things, Gary Gibson, Spence’s only real competition for the NT job, had a poor night with a -1.7 grade. The only Buccaneer defender worse was Jacob Cutrera, who mainly received his poor grade thanks to a penalty (and to be perfectly honest, it’s a penalty I don’t remember at all).

Daniel Te’o-Nesheim also had a poor night, with a -0.6 rating for the evening, further proving why Da’Quan Bowers should not be held back and used situationally to replace Daniel.

Lavonte David, Leonard Johnson, Johnthan Banks and the aforementioned Barron played the most snaps of any Buccaneers’ defenders.

Offense

There were not as many positive performances from the Buccaneers’ offense, but there are certainly a few to point out.

Reserve tackle Mike Remmers continues to impress PFF, as he posted the highest score of any offensive player on the Buccaneers. Demar Doston was next with a 1.2 positive grade, as he allowed only 1 QB hurry in 23 pass blocking snaps.

Brian Leonard was the highest rated skill position player with a 1.2 grade thanks to not only his rushing but his pass blocking abilities.

Jeremy Zuttah, Peyton Hillis, Jamon Meredith, and tight ends Danny Noble and Tom Crabtree all posted decent scores.

Donald Penn had an interesting night, as his two sacks allowed wrecked his pass blocking grade, but he more than made up for that with a strong run blocking grade. The Buccaneers’ left tackle wound up with a positive grade despite a lackluster night blocking for Josh Freeman.

Running back Mike James had the worst night thanks to two sacks allowed on 11 pass blocking snaps, but he has proven he’s capable of run blocking, and one of the sacks was mainly Josh Freeman’s fault.

Gabe Carimi had a weak night as a run blocker, which has been a common trend in PFF’s grades for the Bucs during August. He has been serviceable in pass blocking, but his run blocking has not been graded very well at all.

And to address the quarterback situation, both players had an equally negative -1.5 grade. Josh Freemand Mike Glennon both had an overall poor night under center.

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