Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Danny Gorrer

The next stop on our pre-camp position-by-position analysis of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is the defensive backfield.

The new regime quickly decided that Darrelle Revis wasn’t an economic or schematic fit and released the cornerback. The Bucs are switching to the Cover 2, and Revis’ talents might have gone to waste in that system.

Verner
The Bucs signed free-agent Alterraun Verner to be their No. 1 cornerback. He came at a much better price than Revis, and he’s a natural fit in the Cover 2. The second cornerback spot still is murky. Johnthan Banks started there last year as a rookie, but the Bucs brought in Mike Jenkins to compete with him.

Logic says the loser of that battle becomes the nickelback. But coach Lovie Smith takes a different approach with nickelbacks. He treats it as an individual position and has a coach (Larry Marmie) responsible just for coaching the nickelbacks. Leonard Johnson and Danny Gorrer got work at nickelback in the offseason program.

The safety spots are a little more certain. Barring injury, Mark Barron will start on the strong side and Dashon Goldson will be at free safety. There’s solid depth behind them with Major Wright and Keith Tandy.

Bucs well stocked at CB

June, 4, 2014
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Even after parting ways with Darrelle Revis, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could be better off at cornerback than they were a year ago. That's because they have strength in numbers.

“It's been very heated," defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said of the competition at cornerback. “(Mike Jenkins) has come in, he's fighting for a spot, Johnthan Banks doesn't want to relinquish the spot and Alterraun Verner coming in fighting for a spot, it's been healthy competition; it's been good for our team. Danny Gorrer, he's fighting for a spot, Rashaan (Melvin) he's fighting for a spot, we've got some depth at corner and it'll all shake itself out once we get to training camp, we get the pads on and get through the preseason, but right now it's been very heated and very good for our team.”

The reality is Verner is pretty much assured of one starting spot. That leaves Jenkins and Banks competing for the other starting spot. Logic says the loser of that battle will end up as the nickelback. But the Bucs treat that position differently than a lot of teams. Assistant coach Larry Marmie is assigned to work solely with the nickelbacks. D.J. Moore, who played for coach Lovie Smith in Chicago, and Leonard Johnson have been the two guys working at nickelback in the offseason program.

Frazier said Moore has the early lead.

"We've got some competition, but D.J. his history and his background kind of gives him a leg up right now," Frazier said. "With D.J.'s experience, he's been in this system, had a lot of success in it in Chicago. Leonard (is) learning the system, he's fighting to earn the spot and he's a very good special-teams player as well."

Bucs make early splash

March, 11, 2014
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The opening of free agency came with a flurry of activity by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

We already knew former Cincinnati defensive end Michael Johnson was joining the Bucs. But minutes after free agency opened, Adam Schefter reported two other signings. Schefter reported the Bucs signed tight end Brandon Myers to a two-year, $4 million deal and defensive tackle Clinton McDonald to a four-year, $12 million deal.

Those other two moves could give the Bucs two immediate starters. Myers spent last season with the New York Giants, where he caught 47 passes for 522 yards and four touchdowns. Myers is known more for his receiving ability than his blocking. He likely will compete with Tim Wright for the starting job.

McDonald has been a career backup in Seattle, but he’ll have a chance to earn a starting job in Tampa Bay. As a rotational player last season, McDonald had 5.5 sacks and 35 tackles.

The Bucs also will have quarterback Josh McCown in for a visit. McCown could end up competing with Mike Glennon for the starting role. Chicago cornerback Charles Tillman, Green Bay center Evan Dietrich-Smith and Cincinnati offensive tackle Anthony Collins are scheduled to visit the Bucs. Linebacker Dane Fletcher, who spent the last three seasons with New England, also was scheduled to begin his visit Tuesday night. The Bucs also have re-signed reserve defensive back Danny Gorrer to a one-year contract.

Bucs' free agents: Nos. 11-15

February, 12, 2014
Feb 12
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Let's continue our rankings of Tampa Bay's potential free agents with Nos. 11 through 15.

11. Danny Gorrer, cornerback. Injuries sidelined him for a good chunk of the season. The Bucs will be looking to upgrade their depth at cornerback.

12. Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, defensive end. He was a favorite of the previous regime, largely because he didn’t make a lot of mistakes. But Te’o-Nesheim has no upside and the Bucs need to get better at defensive end.

13. Dan Orlovsky, quarterback. If the Bucs are fully committed to going with Mike Glennon as their starter, it would make some sense to bring Orlovsky back. He provides some solid value as a veteran mentor. But it’s likely the Bucs will try to bring in someone to compete with Orlovsky.

14. Nate Byham, tight end. Byham suffered a season-ending injury and didn’t contribute much. The Bucs are likely to try to upgrade at tight end and that could leave Byham looking for work.

15. Spencer Larsen, fullback. He played a very small role last season and was not much of a factor.

Tampa Bay's 2014 free agents

February, 4, 2014
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TAMPA, Fla. -- New coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jason Licht are inheriting a pretty good situation as they get ready for the start of free agency.

It remains to be seen what they’ll do as far as bringing in players from the outside. But they don’t need to do anything major when it comes to their own potential free agents. The Bucs have 19 potential free agents, but none of them are core players.

The list is highlighted by fullback Erik Lorig, receiver Tiquan Underwood, linebackers Jonathan Casillas and Dekoda Watson and offensive linemen Jamon Meredith and Ted Larsen -- all of whom were at least part-time starters in 2013.

The rest of Tampa Bay’s list of potential free agents includes quarterback Dan Orlovsky, tight end Nate Byham, running backs Brian Leonard and Spencer Larsen, defensive end Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, defensive tackle Gary Gibson, defensive backs Danny Gorrer and Michael Adams, linebackers Adam Hayward and Jacob Cutrera, long-snapper Andrew Economos and kickers Rian Lindell and Lawrence Tynes.

Playing time for special teams

January, 20, 2014
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TAMPA, Fla. -- Dekoda Watson was a part-time player as a linebacker and defensive end last season. But he was pretty much a full-time player on special teams.

Watson was on the field for a team-high 311 of Tampa Bay’s 453 special-teams plays.

Let’s take a look at the number of special-teams plays Tampa Bay’s most used players on special teams were on the field for. We’ll include only those that had more than 75 plays on special teams.

Looking at playing time: Defense

January, 17, 2014
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TAMPA, Fla. -- We previously showed you the playing time for all of Tampa Bay's offensive players. Now, it's time to do the same for the defense.

The Buccaneers had 1,059 defensive plays. Here's the breakdown of the number of plays each defensive player participated in, followed by my quick take.

DEFENSIVE LINE: Gerald McCoy 962, Adrian Clayborn 933, Akeem Spence 694, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 602, William Gholston 312, Da'Quan Bowers 206, Gary Gibson 164, Derek Landri 123, Steven Means 77, Trevor Scott 54.

Quick take: Most teams rotate their defensive linemen to keep them fresh. But the Bucs didn't do that with McCoy and Clayborn. The theory behind that was that, even when a bit winded, they were substantially better than their backups. The rookie Gholston got a lot of playing time in the second half of the season.

LINEBACKERS: Lavonte David 1,022, Mason Foster 771, Dekoda Watson 257, Jonathan Casillas 197, Adam Hayward 187, Ka'Lial Glaud 6, Danny Lansanah 4.

Quick take: The Bucs played David as much as they possibly could because he might be the best player on the team. Some of Watson's snaps came at defensive end as the Bucs experimented with him at that position late in the season.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: Darrelle Revis 948, Johnthan Banks 939, Mark Barron 834, Dashon Goldson 807, Leonard Johnson 691, Keith Tandy 441, Ahmad Black 146, Kelcie McCray 101, Michael Adams 86, Danny Gorrer 83.

Quick take: Even though he wasn't 100 percent as he came back from knee surgery, the Bucs still used Revis a lot.

Tampa Bay's 2014 free agents

January, 2, 2014
Jan 2
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TAMPA, Fla. -- Say what you want about the unsuccessful tenure of Tampa Bay general manager Mark Dominik. But, in a lot of ways, he left the Buccaneers in good shape.

As we’ve told you several times before, the Bucs have about $115 million committed toward the 2014 salary cap, which is expected to be around $125 million. Throw in the fact the Bucs will be able to carry over about $7 million in unused 2013 cap space and they’ll enter the start of the offseason with about $17 million to work with.

More importantly, almost all the prominent players are under contract through 2014. The Bucs have a total of 19 players that can become unrestricted free agents, but none of them are core players.

Here’s a list of Tampa Bay’s potential free agents: offensive linemen Jamon Meredith and Ted Larsen; quarterback Dan Orlovsky; receiver Tiquan Underwood; tight end Nate Byham; running backs Brian Leonard, Erik Lorig and Spencer Larsen; defensive linemen Daniel Te’o-Nesheim and Gary Gibson; defensive backs Danny Gorrer and Michael Adams; linebackers Dekoda Watson, Jonathan Casillas, Adam Hayward and Jacob Cutrera; long-snapper Andrew Economos; and kickers Rian Lindell and Lawrence Tynes.

Looking at Buccaneers' playing time

December, 10, 2013
12/10/13
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TAMPA, Fla. -- It's time for our weekly look at how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers distributed playing time.

In a 27-6 victory against the Buffalo Bills, the Bucs ran 66 offensive plays and were on the field for 67 defensive snaps. Here's a look at the individual playing time from Sunday.

OFFENSE

Donald Penn 66
Jamon Meredith 66
Demar Dotson 66
Mike Glennon 66
Tim Wright 59
Vincent Jackson 57
Jeremy Zuttah 51
Tiquan Underwood 45
Davin Joseph 43
Erik Lorig 42
Bobby Rainey 37
Ted Larsen 36
Brian Leonard 25
Chris Owusu 21
Gabe Carimi 16
Russell Shepard 14
Kyle Adams 11
Skye Dawson 7
Mike Hill 5
Spencer Larsen 2
Eric Page 1

DEFENSE

Dashon Goldson 66
Johnthan Banks 66
Mark Barron 66
Gerald McCoy 66
Darrelle Revis 66
Lavonte David 59
Leonard Johnson 58
Adrian Clayborn 56
Mason Foster 53
Akeem Spence 43
Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 39
William Gholston 23
Keith Tandy 15
Da'Quan Bowers 14
Adam Hayward 12
Steven Means 11
Derek Landri 11
Dekoda Watson 10
Danny Gorrer 1
Ka'Lial Glaud 1
Kelcie McCray 1

Tampa Bay's playing-time summary

December, 3, 2013
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TAMPA, Fla. -- It's time for our weekly look at how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers divided their playing time.

In Sunday's 27-6 loss to Carolina, the Bucs had 49 plays on offense and 64 on defense. Here are the number of snaps each player participated in:

OFFENSE

Davin Joseph 49
Donald Penn 49
Jamon Meredith 49
Demar Dotson 49
Jeremy Zuttah 49
Mike Glennon 49
Vincent Jackson 48
Tiquan Underwood 40
Bobby Rainey 38
Tim Wright 38
Chris Owusu 25
Erik Lorig 24
Brian Leonard 11
Russell Shepard 9
Gabe Carimi 9
Kyle Adams 3

DEFENSE

Johnthan Banks 62
Dashon Goldson 61
Lavonte David 61
Mark Barron 61
Gerald McCoy 61
Mason Foster 55
Adrian Clayborn 54
Akeem Spence 51
Leonard Johnson 42
Jonathan Casillas 40
Darrelle Revis 39
William Gholston 31
Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 30
Dekoda Watson 10
Keith Tandy 10
Danny Gorrer 9
Gary Gibson 9
Da'Quan Bowers 7
Ka'Lial Glaud 5
Kelcie McCray 3
Adam Hayward 3

Playing time for the Buccaneers

November, 26, 2013
11/26/13
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TAMPA, Fla. – It’s time for our weekly check on playing time for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

In Sunday’s 24-21 victory against the Detroit Lions, the Bucs had 52 offensive snaps and 76 defensive plays. Here are the total snaps each player took part in:

OFFENSE

Davin Joseph 52

Donald Penn 52

Jamon Meredith 52

Demar Dotson 52

Jeremy Zuttah 52

Mike Glennon 52

Vincent Jackson 47

Tiquan Underwood 41

Tim Wright 38

Bobby Rainey 37

Erik Lorig 28

Chris Owusu 17

Tom Crabtree 15

Brian Leonard 15

Gabe Carimi 6

Spencer Larsen 2

Russell Shephard 1

DEFENSE

Keith Tandy 76

Lavonte David 76

Mark Barron 74

Gerald McCoy 74

Leonard Johnson 72

Johnthan Banks 69

Adrian Clayborn 66

Adam Hayward 55

Akeem Spence 54

Danny Gorrer 49

Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 36

William Gholston 35

Darrelle Revis 34

Kelcie McCray 21

Da'Quan Bowers 18

Dekoda Watson 12

Jonathan Casillas 11

Derek Landri 4

Buccaneers bring back Gary Gibson

September, 3, 2013
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TAMPA, Fla. – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers originally went thin on defensive tackles. But they’re stocking back up that position.

They signed Gary Gibson on Tuesday. Gibson was released by the Bucs on Saturday when the team was carrying only three defensive tackles on its roster. The team later claimed Chris Jones off waivers from Houston. Jones and Gibson will compete for playing time behind Gerald McCoy, Akeem Spence and Derek Landri.

To make room for Gibson, the Bucs placed cornerback Danny Gorrer on injured reserve, but designated him for return. Gorrer recently had groin surgery.

Surveying the Buccaneers' roster

September, 1, 2013
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After making their cuts Saturday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a roster that looks a lot like what I projected Friday.

I hit on 51 of 53 roster spots. Defensive tackle Gary Gibson and offensive lineman Cody Wallace were the two guys I had making the team who didn’t make the final cut. I didn’t have tight end Tim Wright and safety Keith Tandy making the roster, but they did.

Let’s take a brief overview of the composition of Tampa Bay’s roster:

QB (3): Josh Freeman, Mike Glennon and Dan Orlovsky

Comment: The question is whether Glennon or Orlovsky will be the No. 2 quarterback. My thinking is the Bucs wouldn’t have held onto Orlovsky if he’s going to be No. 3.

RB (5): Doug Martin, Erik Lorig, Brian Leonard, Mike James and Peyton Hillis

Comment: Leonard, James and Hillis all looked good in the preseason. They all can be used to help keep Martin fresh.

WR (5): Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, Kevin Ogletree, Tiquan Underwood and Eric Page

Comment: The first four were pretty much set in stone. Page made the roster mostly because he’s going to be the return man.

TE (4): Luke Stocker, Tom Crabtree, Nate Byham and Tim Wright

Comment: Presumably, the Bucs kept Wright around because they expect Crabtree to miss some time with an ankle injury.

OL (8): Donald Penn, Carl Nicks, Jeremy Zuttah, Davin Joseph, Demar Dotson, Gabe Carimi, Ted Larsen and Jamon Meredith

Comment: By carrying only three backups, the Bucs appear to be optimistic that Nicks won’t miss too much time due to a staph infection.

DL (9): Adrian Clayborn, Da'Quan Bowers, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim, Trevor Scott, William Gholston, Steven Means, Gerald McCoy, Akeem Spence and Derek Landri

Comment: McCoy, Spence and Landri are the only true defensive tackles. The Bucs must be planning to use at least one of their ends on the inside at times.

LB (6): Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Jonathan Casillas, Dekoda Watson, Najee Goode and Adam Hayward

Comment: The starters have a chance to be one of the league’s best units, and the backups aren’t bad either.

DB (10): Darrelle Revis, Johnthan Banks, Leonard Johnson, Danny Gorrer, Rashaan Melvin, Michael Adams, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron, Ahmad Black and Keith Tandy

Comment: This should be the most improved area on the team.

Specialists (3): Rian Lindell, Andrew Economos and Michael Koenen.

Comment: Lindell is the third projected kicker the Bucs have had. Connor Barth and Lawrence Tynes both are out with injuries.

Projecting the Buccaneers roster

August, 30, 2013
8/30/13
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Roster cuts don’t have to be made until 6 p.m. Saturday. But let’s have a little fun in the meantime.

Let’s take a look at my best guess as to how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 53-man roster will shape up:

Quarterbacks (3): Josh Freeman, Mike Glennon and Dan Orlovsky

Analysis: A rough outing by Glennon in the preseason finale might have convinced the Bucs it’s best to keep Orlovsky around.

Running backs and fullbacks (5): Doug Martin, Brian Leonard, Mike James, Peyton Hillis and Erik Lorig

Analysis: Hillis is very much on the bubble. The fact he doesn't play special teams could hurt him. But he also could stick around because he has the size to be a backup for Lorig at fullback and could be a valuable short-yardage rusher.

Tight ends (3): Luke Stocker, Tom Crabtree and Nate Byham

Analysis: The Bucs may have to keep Danny Noble if Crabtree’s ankle injury is going to keep him out for an extended period.

Wide receivers (5): Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, Kevin Ogletree, Tiquan Underwood and Eric Page

Analysis: Page has emerged as the return man and that should earn him the final roster spot.

Offensive line (9): Davin Joseph, Carl Nicks, Donald Penn, Demar Dotson, Jeremy Zuttah, Gabe Carimi, Ted Larsen, Jamon Meredith and Cody Wallace

Analysis: The Bucs could carry an extra lineman if it looks like Nicks will be out for an extended period.

Defensive line (10): Gerald McCoy, Akeem Spence, Adrian Clayborn, Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, Da’Quan Bowers, Gary Gibson, Trevor Scott, William Gholston, Steven Means and Derek Landri

Analysis: The last few spots are very competitive and the Bucs could look to bring in a defensive tackle from the waiver wire.

Linebackers (6): Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Dekoda Watson, Jonathan Casillas, Adam Hayward and Najee Goode

This position is pretty clear-cut unless the Bucs bring in someone off waivers.

Defensive backs (9): Darrelle Revis, Johnthan Banks, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron, Leonard Johnson, Danny Gorrer, Michael Adams, Rashaan Melvin and Ahmad Black.

Analysis: Melvin is very much on the bubble.

Specialists (3): Michael Koenen, Andrew Economos and Rian Lindell.

Analysis: Kicker Lawrence Tynes still is recovering from a staph infection and could end up on injured reserve.
TAMPA, Fla. -- Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano said Tuesday that there’s positive news on the recoveries of guard Carl Nicks and kicker Lawrence Tynes, who have been sidelined with staph infections.

“They’re responding well,’’ Schiano said. “Carl, I know more about because he’s here. Carl’s healing up. Timeline, I don’t know. I can’t put a definite date on it. But he is healing, he’s recovering. Lawrence, he’s not in town. But everything that can be done is being done to make sure everybody recovers.’’

The team has had its facility treated twice since the discovery of MRSA. Nicks has been around the team facility in recent days, a team official said. Tynes is at his home in Kansas City.

In other medical news, Schiano said cornerback Danny Gorrer had groin surgery. Schiano said the injury is not season ending, but Gorrer at least will miss some practice time.

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