Buccaneers need depth to step up even more after another loss
By John Paul
While on some fronts, it would appear the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have gotten markedly better this offseason with different offensive acquisitions such as Julio Jones and Russell Gage, there are other areas of the team that have certainly suffered greatly, most importantly their offensive line.
With the loss of Alex Cappa to free agency, Ali Marpet to retirement, and Ryan Jensen to injury already this offseason, the Bucs line is looking for answers and unfortunately suffered another blow in their preseason game last night against the Tennessee Titans.
With the season only weeks away, Bucs left guard, Aaron Stinnie, tore both his ACL and MCL during the team’s game and will be out the rest of the season.
Stinnie was fighting for the starting left guard spot on the line that had been open since Ali Marpet retired, and all indicators were that he would have earned that spot if not for this season-ending injury.
Stinnie started three postseason games for the team in 2020, including the Super Bowl, so he already had some great experience to step into that starting role this year.
With Stinnie now out indefinitely, the Bucs will be forced to continue and look for some diamonds in the rough to fill the voids if they hope to give a quarterback like Tom Brady, who has almost zero mobility, any chance of making things happen offensively like he has the last two years.
The competition for starting left guard now looks to be between Nick Leverett, who has limited time on the field, and rookie Luke Goedeke, who looks like the favorite right now.
Neither player is a particularly great option for the Bucs when they need so much in year one, but unfortunately they don’t have many great alternatives, so going with Leverett or Goedeke is the probably the best they can do for the time being.
Hopefully Ryan Jensen is able to recover quicker than reports say, as his presence on the offensive line would at least bring a sense of confidence and consistency to what is now a fractured unit at best.