Defensive Line Will Look Different In 2013
March 01, 2013 at 01:21am by Scott • 5 Comments »
So here’s the situation with the defensive line. The Bucs and Roy Miller have stopped negotiating and Miller will head into free agency.
“Roy is excited to see what’s out there for him in free agency,” said his agent, Mike McCartney. “He has a lot to offer after an excellent season, helping a team that was last against the run (in 2011) go to No. 1 against the run last season.”
And the Bucs will not be using the franchise tag on Michael Bennett (or anyone for that matter) and there has been no word of progress on an extension for him. So, the Bucs could be without two of their four starting defensive linemen this season because, hey, when you’ve got the #1 rushing defense in the league, the only way to get better is to switch everything around. Or something.
Miller had a good season and I thought he was getting better, but his departure isn’t going to make me too upset. They need a big, strong guy in the middle to clog everything up and give the linebackers room to work, but they can probably find another one of those at a reasonable price. But Bennett is the team’s leading sacker over the last two years, is still improving and is still young. There may be some good guys that get cut, but that’s a hell of a chance to take. Who is better that has an expiring contract? Michael Johnson? He’s probably a better athlete but I wouldn’t go so far as to say he’s a better player. Osi Umenyiora? The Bucs would be stupid to replace Bennett with a player over 30. The only explanation I’ve got is that they really like Da’Quan Bowers (pending gun charges and all) and they already know Adrian Clayborn is going to be on the right side, so there’s not really room for Bennett. And hey, quality depth on the defensive line is overrated anyway. When have the Bucs ever really been short of good players on the line? I don’t think it has ever happened.