Yardbarker Horiz

Monday, October 25, 2010

Who Will Dominik Find Next?

Thirty One NFL teams are nervous today:  the Buccaneers have an open spot on their practice squad.
Tampa Bay General Manager Mark Dominik has been ruthless attacking the practice squads of other NFL teams.  Granted, they don't all pan out, but his keen eye and the strong staff around him have found players like Donald Penn, Micheal Bennett (swiped from Seattle when they tried to get him on the practice squad last season, a tactic Dominik uses regularly), Rudy Carpenter, Tim Crowder, and Kregg Lumpkin, and pulled them away from another team's practice squad.  Is there another gem to be found in 2010?  And at what position?

Two voids were created with the promotion of TE Ryan Purvis and T Derek Hardman to the active roster.  Purvis was a same-position swap with the active roster, replacing TE Jeremy Stevens.  Hardman was added for depth along the offensive line which has some nagging injuries.  Although a new tight end prospect seems to be on the way, there is no guarantee the other will be an offensive lineman .  What are the possibilities?

A look at the Young Core Defense does not show any immediate needs.  A linebacker, perhaps, but LB Mike Balogun is already on the practice squad having been lifted from the San Francisco 49ers back on October 11th.  A fourth defensive tackle to complete the two-deep of young players is also a possibility.

A look at the Young Core Offense shows a couple areas where the team is thin.  With Purvis coming up to the active roster, the tight end position finally has the young players it has needed.  Another tight end is, nevertheless, a possibility.  And although Hardman adds some depth to the offensive line, another offensive lineman is always a possibility because the practice squad is a great place to develop them.  The season ending injury to Kareem Huggins also opens the door to another running back.

The roster shows there are six players with 7 or more years of NFL playing experience:  Ronde Barber (14), Keydrick Vincent (10), John Gilmore (9), Ryan Sims (9), and Jeff Faine (8).  That's corner, guard, tight end, defensive tackle, center.  These overlap with the lists we've already made, so no clues there.

The last place to check is the projected future draft needs.  These strongly suggest additional offensive linemen or linebackers.

With 31 teams having 8 players each on their practice squad, Dominik, pro personnel man Shelton Quarles, and the rest of the front office will have 248 players to pick from.

There is one thing we know for certain:  the players chosen for these spots will be a player Dominik believes can be a key part of the future of the franchise.


  1. Btw, it's not possible to sign guys to the practice squad that currently are on another team's PS. Those can only be signed to the active roster.
    Thus it'll have to be a free agent or waiver pickup.

  2. I get it, did not make myself very clear. The players I spoke about are from other teams practice squads to the active roster, which was possible. However, Dominik has signed two free agents, so the article missed.

    Happens all the time.

    Thanks for coming by!


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