This falls squarely into the realm of no shit Sherlock

The NFL has released it's opening day primetime schedule, as well as the Turkeyday schedule and there are a few things which should not surprise us; 1) the Bucs are NOT playing on Turkeyday, 2) the Cowboys and Lions are playing on Turkeyday, 3) the NFL Network will continue to screw over its potential fanbase by broadcasting games nobody can watch. I get the NFL Network but my parents do not even have the option of subscribing which means we will once again be limited to the two worst NFL games that fourth Thursday in November.

Anyway, you've got to appreciate how the NFL teases us by releasing the limited schedule a week before they release the full schedule. No other sport could get away with this but I can guarantee ESPN will have a rundown of each one of these games by the 6:00 SportsCenter complete with final score predictions and rushing totals.


"Get your head out of your ass!"

This SNL spoof commerical from last night is quickly making the rounds on the intertubes but I'll join in on the Peyton love (just call me Kenny Chesney)....


See? Garcia is totally not gay

He's even getting married. Now, would a gay get married? (Not if Dungy has anything to say about it.)

Obligatory cheesecake shot.


Welcome Kato (erghhh....Cato)

The Bucs have signed Kato.

No, not that Kato.

Not that one either.

There we go.

The popular consensus is that this is a good move as it upgrades an average linebacker corp and creates competition for the weakest backer position, strongside, between Cato and Ryan Nece.

Anyone else notice that the Bucs big defensive free agent signings have all been tweeners, i.e. guys who can play two positions? Kevin Carter is between a tackle and end, Chuckwara is between an end and a outside linebacker and Cato could play either outside backer or strong safety. The Tampa Two defense has been good to tweeners who would struggle in a more traditional defense, so it will be fun to see how Kiffin utilizes his newest weapons. The Bucs defensive cupboard has gone from being very barren to well stocked, and should look even better after the draft (Marcus Thomas anyone?).

Oh, and Tampa Tribune, June Arrives Early for Bucs? Nice.


Hells Yeah

Screw the Simms-Garcia cat fight. Screw the minor league signings by the Bucs. Screw (even) the text message Rays bill board (although it makes me want to go to a lot more Rays games). Today and tomorrow, here at the BBB it is all about the VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH UNIVERSITY.

CAA Represent.


My thoughts, predictions, and other useless insights into the NCAA Tournament

You have to love March madness, if for no other reason that with the exception of the Super Bowl no other sporting event is as widely talked about as the NCAA Tournament. The tournament is held across America with teams from every conference. Everyone has a bracket, and chances are the middle aged mother of two who thinks George Mason is in Georgia will win your tournament. Unless you are bolshevik or a Seminole you should be a fan of March madness.

[and I meant to add this orginally but check out the creatively named Chris' Sports Blog for plenty of NCAA Tourney goodness]

Anyway, on to my thoughts on the bracket with my picks to be released on Thursday...
  • Everyone is picking Florida to win it all, which as I have argued is more than fair. Not since Wooden's era has a team brought back all five starters from a championship team, and only UNC and Kansas can rival Florida's talent. And while I think Florida is a lock for the Final Four, I do not think they will win it all this year. Since Kansas beat Florida in overtime (at a neutral site) back in November I have been leaning towards Kansas to win the championship and I'm still leaning that way right now. My advice for filling out your bracket is to pick a Final Four and work backwards. For example, before the brackets were announced my Final Four was Florida, Kansas, Texas and Oregon. I'm feeling less confident about Texas and obviously Oregon and Florida both can not make the Final Four, so I have no idea who my current Final Four would be.

  • I'm a shameless SEC apologist so I will make an argument for Arkansas. The Hogs have a great neutral site record (6-2) beating Southern Illionois, West Virginia and Vandy and losing to Texas Tech. In addition Arkansas lost at Texas, so nobody can say Arkansas did not have a difficult non-conference schedule (like say Syracuse). In addition, the SEC is the second best conference by RPI (behind only the ACC).

  • I hate that Stanford is one of the last four teams in. Their non-conference schedule is less than impressive (Texas Tech, Virginia and Air Force, and they got killed by Air Force 45-79), and they lost in the first round of the Pac-10 Tournament. The best thing Stanford had going for them is they finished 6th in the PAC-10 with a 10-8 record. If the Comittee was simply looking at conference records then Kansas State (10-6), which finished fourth in the Big 12, deserved to get in ahead of Stanford. But then again, I watched very few middle of the pack games involving either the PAC 10 or Big 12 so I don't have a good feel for either team.

  • One team which I do have a good feel for is FSU which for the second straight year is one of the last four teams out. FSU is a great case study of what the Selection Committee takes into account when handing out at-large bids.. FSU has the best player in the ACC (Thornton) and played a great non-conference schedule (Florida, Wisconsin, Pitt). But the Noles went a pitiful 7-9 in conference, and no matter how deep the ACC is this year the Selection Committee was not going to let in a team with a losing record in conference. FSU has the ability to beat any team it plays (they did beat Florida) but the Noles are horribly inconsistent. If FSU could have picked up one more win February (when they went 2-5) they probably would have been playing in the tournament.

  • Prepare yourself for plenty of Jim Boeheim whining over the next 24 hours. And I might actually feel some pity for Boeheim if his team has left New York more than once before New Years Day this season. Syracuse played three decent teams out of conference (Wichita St, Oklahoma St, and Drexel) and lost to all three teams. Additionally, Syracuse didn't have many impressive Big East wins despite going 10-8 in the conference. The Orange beat Marquette and Villanova early in the season and defeated Georgetown in a classic let down game for the Hoyas (Georgetown had just defeated Pitt).

  • The mid-majors got hosed and not because Drexel didn't get in. I don't have any problem with the number of mid-majors which earned at large berths. You could make an argument in favor of Drexel based on their out of conference record (beat Syracuse, Villanova, Creighton) but any team which losses to my alma mater, William and Mary, should not earn an at-large bid. Maybe someday when William and Mary sells it soul and spends the money to field a decent team (and with the current president that may happen) losing to William and Mary will not be a black mark on a team's resume. Instead, it appears the Selection Committee hates mid majors because eight mids are matched up against each other in the first round of the tournament. The Nevada-Creighton and Old Dominion-Butler matchups are especially disheartening. There is no way that mid majors will be as big of a story this year as they were last year (although that was bound to happen before the brackets were announced anyway).

  • I think we're going to see a return to chalk this year, with runs by middle of the pack conference teams like Maryland, Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Virginia Tech. This isn't exactly going out on a limb but I think at least three of these teams will defeat either a #1 or #2 seed.

  • I really like VCU to make it to the Sweet Sixteen for several reasons; 1) they are coached by former Florida assistant Anthony Grant, 2) they won an underrated CAA (also know as George Mason's conference) and, 3) they are from Virginia. VCU pulls weak Duke and Pitt teams in the first two rounds.

  • Just something worth pointing out, there are a lot of freshman point guards on teams which are getting a lot of pub. Ohio State, Texas, UNC and Maryland all start freshman at the point guard position and while all of these rookies are talented, it remains to be seen how they dish the ball when the pressure is on.


A Story in Pictures

Because everything's easier to understand when all you have to figure out is bright shiny images.....

The Buccaneer quarterback saga begins March 13, 1972 with the birth of Trent Dilfer (for convience's sake we will fast forward 22 years and several dozen other Buc quarterbacks).

Dilfer (the one with his shirt off) had a few good years in Tampa, got chased off by that fat fuck Bubba the Love Sponge, then got to tell Tampa to suck his dick before beginning his Kung Fu-like destiny to roam the league going from one city to the next every year.

Dilfer was replaced by a series of forgetable quarterbacks beginning with Eric Zeier. This is the only existing picture of Zeier.

Everyone loved Shaun King until people realized his arm was weaker than FDR's legs. He now has a promising career in the Arena League.

Then came Brad Johnson, who despite not being able to throw the ball further than 15 yards down field, won a Super Bowl. The BJ is 68 and currently looking for a team interested in his services.

For roughly two years the quarterback position was manned by either Rob Johnson or King whenever the Bucs had a late game as the same time as the Ponderosa early bird special (the BJ has to eat).

Rob Johnson's current whereabouts are unknown. Despite what his website might lead you to believe King is still in the arena league.

For a brief time we were teased with the suckitude of Chris Simms before....

...we had to live through a year of Brian Griese....

...only to go back to the Liberace-loving, spinach-dip making quarterback. These years are largely forgetable.

In stepped Bruce Gradkowski (let's be honest you have no idea what Grads looks like) and Tim Rattay when the Panthers defense decided they like Simms better without a spleen.

And now we have Simms and Jeff Garcia on the same team (and maybe Plummer if he wants to make it a holy trinity?). I'm sure this will work out well....

Could the Bucs be the big winners this offseason?

With the initial flury of free agency slowing down it appears the Bucs could emerge as the big winners of the offseason. With a shallow free agent pool and an unprecedented 27% increase in the salary cap, the best value this offseason lies in quantity not quality. And no team has signed more players than the Bucs.

Take a look at the right hand side bar, the Bucs have signed at least seven free agents, including five who were not on the team last year (I'm not including Plummer in that number). The Bucs have upgraded three crucial positions on the team which were weaknesses last year, quarterback, offensive tackle and defensive end. More importantly, the Bucs have not broken the bank signing any of these players.

The surplus of cash has resulted in over valued contracts for some of the premier free agents. Joey Porter has received $20 million in guaranteed cash in a 5 year, $32 million contract from the Dolphins. Adalius Thomas has $15 million guanteed in his 6 year contract with the Pats. Patrick Kerney's 6 year contract with the Seahawks includes $19.5 million in guaranteed money. In comparison, the Bucs signed Kevin Carter to a contract with less than $5 million guaranteed. As Buccaneer Harbour points out, that is some shrew maneuvering by Bruce Allen.

After the disasterous '04 offseason which led to the signings of Todd Steusie, Charlie Garner and Darrell Russell (all busts), the Bucs seem to have retooled their approach to free agency. The Bucs have had mixed success pursuing value free agents like Chris Hovan, Jamie Winborn and Ike Hilliard. Some players turn into starters like Hovan, others (like Winborn) don't stick with the team. Either way the Bucs are not spending a good deal of cash signing these players.

On the flip side, the Bucs have only lost two players so far (although if Mahan signs somewhere else it would be a big loss). It is unlikely the Bucs will lose any starters this offseason (although, again, there is a possibility middlebacker Shelton Quarles may be lost for the season due to injury). When taken on the whole, so far the Bucs have come out ahead this offseason. We still have another month or so to go until the draft so it is too early to say for sure the Bucs came out winners this offseason but based on the early reports I would say they have to be front runners for the honor.


The Buccaneer Ministry of Truth

Hat tip to the Times Bucs blog (and Stephen Holder) for revealing this tid bit from the press conference with Bruce Allen regarding the Plummer trade...

Reporter: "Is this a conditional draft pick?" (The Broncos press release says it is)

Allen: "No. There's other conditions with the pick we sent. . . They're undisclosed."

Reporter: "So, it IS a conditional pick?"

Allen: "No."

I'm no Nobel Laureate but I'm pretty sure if a pick has conditions it is, by definition, a conditional pick.

I've had some time to digest the qb moves and I still like it, if for no other reason than it involves Gruden and company thinking outside the box. In the best case scenario, the Bucs pick up Carr or a draft pick in exchange for Plummer or Simms, respectively. In the worst case scenario the Bucs carry three starting-caliber qbs on their roster heading into the season which, compared to last season, ain't all that bad. The Bucs have a good deal of flexibility because of the increased cap as it is. But we'll see how this plays out. Moving on....

Scanning the headlines......ahhhh, the Bucs have signed defensive end Kevin Carter (go Gators) to a four year deal for $25. Spires ain't happy about the move, not that I blame him. Holder indicates Carter could play the tackle position previously manned by Booger and before him Sapp. I haven't seen much of Carter since he moved to the Dolphins but I don't remember him being big enough to man the under tackle position (although he is talented at getting to the quarterback).

I know I'm forgettting something......that's right, check out my latest installment of the sunshine state roundball update over at the sticks, which is apparently not a fan of not gay jokes.


What the hell is going on here?

I've pretty much quit doing the whole BREAKING NEWS thing, but ESPN News is reporting that the Bucs have signed Jeff Garcia and traded for Jake Plummer.

I've have no idea what is going on here.

My first impression is that Gruden and company are going with the theory that if you throw enough shit against the wall some of it has to stick. That being written both Garcia and Plummer are better fits for Gruden's west coast offense than Chris Simms. Plus, with Plummer on board the Bucs quarterbacks, on average, are slightly less effimenate. And if Plummer regrew his beard it might make the Bucs quarterbacks the most manly squad (again on average) in the NFL.

With this many former starting quarterbacks on the roster you can expect two results: 1) a very heated training camp battle, and 2) a lot of media hype surrounding the Bucs going into the season. I think Garcia is the odds on favorite to win the job for the upcoming season, with Plummer set to enter the roll of quarterback for the future. Which leaves Simms as the odd man out (and a very good chance that Simms sees the writing on the wall and asks to be traded). But ESPN has been wrong before so we'll see how this plays out.

UPDATE (1:54 pm): ESPN is now reporting that if Plummer does retire then the Bucs would not have to give up a draft pick. Rumors are flying in certainly one of the most interesting Buccaneer offseasons in recent history. Some of the more interesting ones.....
  • Bucs may try and trade the rights to Plummer to the Texans for either Carr or a draft pick.
  • Bucs may try and trade away Simms, maybe to the Raiders.
UPDATE (2:42): ESPN's Michael Smith reports Plummer had turned in his retirement papers to the NFL front office according to the Pewter Report message board.


A lover spurned...

Dear Jake,

Fuck you. What did we ever do to you that pissed you off? Was it the Largo sex change firing thing, 'cause if it was we're totally not down with that. That ain't Tampa baby.

We could have made you so happy. You could be throwing to Joey Galloway and Calvin Johnson, and handing off to Cadillac and Mike Alstott. We would even over look your suckitude when you tried to throw a 30 yard pass into double coverage using your left hand. Anything's better than the pussy we're with now, he can't even get his balls past the line of scrimmage (if you know what I mean).

We had so much to offer you; plentiful beaches, quality steak joints, no state income tax....we would have even turned a blind eye when you went to our ample strip clubs. 'Cause we're down with that.

But hey, it's cool. We don't need you or your beard. There are plenty of other fish in the sea. In fact, we've been talking to this other guy who is totally not gay. So enjoy retirement fucktard.

-Tampa Bay


Don't let the door hit you on the way out

Kenyatta cut by Bucs.

You ever have that guy in college who makes a great first impression but then you get to know him and you realize all he ever does is make bad jokes, argues with people and brings nothing to the table? Everyone has a friend like that, and I won't say his name (Snake), but when he leaves you are slightly relieved. You still wish him well, just as long as he's not in the same zip code. Well, that's what Kenyatta was to the Bucs, he tried hard but he never lived up to the expectations.

Anyway with Kenyatta gone, Trueblood is left to man the right tackle position which should work great as long as the Bucs run the ball every play. Trueblood is big and works as hard as anyone on the line but he struggles in pass protection. In his defense, pass blocking typically takes more time for young tackles to learn and requires working in synch with another equally young lineman in Davin Joseph, so Trueblood may get better. But if I'm the Bucs I would try and sign Jeff Gracia or Brad Johnson for more quarterback depth if you know what I'm saying.

(Like a Virus) The number of Bucs blogs continues to expand with the addition of Buc Em to the Sports Blogs Network. While many Bucs blogs can lay claim to spot on analysis and commentary only Buc Em features pics of the Oscar Meyer Weiner-mobile.

(White Wants Green) You want an indication for how much money teams are going to throw at free agents? It looks like Dewayne White will not resign with the Bucs because they are not going to give him Simeon Rice money. Assuming White leaves it would leave the Bucs pitifully thin on the defensive line.

(Drum Roll Please) And my selection for the Bucs first round pick is.........Calvin Johnson.

CJ blew away most everyone at the combine, and the biggest question in my mind isn't "do the Bucs want him?" but "will he be available at #4?" Supposedly CJ has been ranked as the number one talent in the draft, which combined with a weak free agent pool at receiver, could lead to CJ being picked before the Bucs' clock starts. Even if JaMarcus and Joe Thomas go to the Raiders and Lions respectively, I think there's a good chance the Browns trade down, possibly with Minnesota at seven. The Browns could still draft Adrian Peterson at seven and would pick up an extra second round pick in the process. And Minnesota could use a safety net for whomever they throw out there at receiver. We still have two months to go before the draft so plenty can happen between now and then.

Calvin continues to prove that his only weaknesses are kyptonite and Reggie Ball.