Tampa Bay Buccaneers
|By Matt De Lima, Tuesday, October 22, 2013|
QB Mike Glennon - Dynasty Only
UPDATE (10/22): The outlook on the former N.C. State QB was all wrong. The Bucs gave up on Josh Freeman only after a handful of games. Glennon snatched the reigns from Freeman back in Week 4 and displayed moderate improvement in the weeks since. Granted, the Bucs haven't won a game since he started; however, his individual numbers are solid for fantasy purposes. Things won't be any easier now that Doug Martin is out indefinitely with a torn tabrum, so keep your expectations low and only start Glennon if the matchup is right.
There may be a deep, dark corner of your brain that thinks Mike Glennon has a shot to overtake Josh Freeman this season. Realistically, you're mistaken. Glennon certainly has some of the physical tools to be a future NFL starter, but he has a long way to go. He didn't overachieve at NC State and possesses a very raw feel for the game. His pocket presence, composure, and throwing ability under duress all need work. Glennon only has value in dynasty formats and fantasy owners will need to exercise some patience for his number to be called. At the earliest, he could see the field in 2014.
RB Doug Martin - Stud (low risk)
UPDATE (10/22): Doug Martin is out indefinitely with a torn labrum and some reports suggest he could be out for the season. For now, Martin will not be placed on injured reserve and fantasy owners will have to stash him on their bench in hopes he might return for a run in the fantasy postseason.
Martin is the toast of fantasy football now. At a position that desperately needed some new blood, Martin exploded onto the scene with a three-game stretch from Weeks 7 to 9, highlighted by a 251-yard, four TD performance against the Oakland Raiders. Dynasty owners are taking this guy as a No. 1 pick, keeper owners are certainly keeping him and he is likely to be taken right after Adrian Peterson in redraft leagues. The Bucs want to establish the run and Martin is their go-to guy. He disappeared in a few games and that does concern me, but then again, every back has those struggles. Don't talk yourself out of taking him if he's available to you.Injury Status: Injured Reserve
RB Brian Leonard - Low Potential
UPDATE (10/22): Look for Leonard to make contributions as a third-down back due to the torn labrum injury suffered by Doug Martin. Leonard excelled in that role while with Cincinnati and St. Louis. He could even compete for something closer to an even split if he performs well or if Mike James struggles.
Brian Leonard has the early veteran edge at securing the change-of-pace role behind Doug Martin. Leonard hasn't been a fantasy factor for his entire career. He has fewer than 50 rushes in his past three seasons combined. He can contribute as a pass-catcher and do a little bit of everything, but he isn't a dynamic talent. Every NFL team needs guys like him.
WR Vincent Jackson - Solid/Safe Pick
Free agent wide receivers don't typically make a big splash in the way Vincent Jackson did in 2012. The big-play receiver that he is, the Bucs did a fantastic job playing to his strengths. Josh Freeman put it up only where his 6'5", 230-pound receiver could get it. It'll really surprise me, in the same way he did a year ago, to see Jackson equal his numbers. VJax enjoyed career highs in receptions, targets, receiving yards, yards per reception and came close in touchdowns. That's really hard to do considering it was his eighth season in the league. Jackson's numbers shouldn't fall off a cliff or anything, but don't expect him to overachieve yet again.
WR Mike Williams - Quality Backup
Mike Williams was about as reliable as they come in 2012. He scored double-digit fantasy totals in half his games in standard formats, no easy task for a No. 2 receiver on a run-first team. Williams is a guy I'd relish if I could grab him as my flex. There just isn't enough upside to get me really excited about him, even though he's been pretty reliable throughout his career. Over his three year career, he has seen 127, 124 and 127 targets respectively. And check this out, over the same span, he has caught 65, 65 and 63 passes. Unreal consistency. Impressive, right?Injury Status: Injured Reserve
WR Tiquan Underwood - Not Draft Worthy
Tiquan Underwood joined the Tampa Bay Bucs in 2012. It was his third team in as many years. So what did he have going for him? Well he played formerly under head coach Greg Schiano over at Rutgers. The Bucs have brought in a slew of receivers to challenge Underwood's incumbency. He had a solid year, but he already dropped down a peg when Tampa added Kevin Ogletree. There's no fantasy value here.
TE Luke Stocker - Low Potential
With the Bucs getting back some of their muscle in their interior offensive line, they may need to ask less of Luke Stocker as a blocker and more as a receiver. This third-year tight end has mostly been under the radar and used sparingly. He only had 27 targets in 2012, so he obviously has a ways to go. Of the Bucs' many young TEs, he has the slight edge in fantasy value, but only in dynasty formats.
UPDATE (10/22): Stocker was placed on injured reserve back in September.Injury Status: Injured Reserve
TE Tom Crabtree - Not Draft Worthy
UPDATE (10/22): Despite assuming the starting job a couple weeks ago, Crabtree is used almost exclusively as an in-line blocker. He has no business being anyone's fantasy squad.
Tom Crabtree was that guy with the Green Bay Packers the last couple years who'd score a touchdown and everyone would groan because he's the one eligible receiver with no fantasy value. He has spent most of his career as an extra in-line blocker, playing second fiddle to Jermichael Finley. Crabtree, no relation to Michael, will likely assume a similar role with the Bucs.Injury Status: Injured Reserve
Tampa Bay Defense - Sleeper (undervalued)
The Bucs had the league's worst pass defense a year ago. What to do, right? Well they went out and got the league's best cover corner in Darrelle Revis. One player doesn't make or break a team, but talk about addressing a need. The key for Tampa is really establishing a pass rush. They desperately need more contributions from Da'Quan Bowers, Gerald McCoy and Adrian Clayborn. There is a ton of youth and upside in this defensive front seven. Lavonte David and Mark Barron are a pair of young, elite playmakers. Adding Dashon Goldson is a huge upgrade via free agency. There's a lot to like, but it is a matter of coming together and playing as a unit. Look for the Bucs to really improve defensively.