Bucs' Simms will start at QB Sunday

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by Doomsday101, Oct 6, 2004.

  1. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Chris Simms will make his first pro start at quarterback for the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers this week, replacing Brad Johnson.

    "I hope I can give us the spark we need," Simms said Wednesday, when the Bucs (0-4) began preparation for Sunday's game against the New Orleans Saints.
    The second-year pro is the son of former New York Giants star Phil Simms. The Bucs selected him in the third round of the 2003 draft, and the strong-armed left-hander saw his first regular season action in relief of Johnson three weeks ago.

    Simms learned of coach Jon Gruden's decision on Tuesday.

    "I was ear to ear, smiling all day. I'm excited. ... It's long way from being the last pick of the third round," the 24-year-old quarterback said.

    Simms replaced Johnson after 15 plays of Tampa Bay's 10-6 loss to Seattle on Sept. 19. Although he led two field goal drives, he fumbled twice - losing one, while committing the other on the Seahawks' 1 yard line and forcing his team to settle for three points instead of a touchdown - and tossed a game-clinching interception.

    Johnson, 36, led the Bucs to Super Bowl victory two seasons ago, but he has lost 10 of his last 13 starts, including six in a row dating to last year.

    Tampa Bay's offense has struggled to get the ball in the end zone, ranking next-to-last in the league in points. The unit, which is missing holdout receiver Keenan McCardell and several injured key players, began the season with a stretch of 11 quarters without a TD.

    Johnson has completed 65 of 103 passes for 674 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions in four games.

    Simms was the emergency quarterback during last week's 16-13 loss to Denver, and was inserted into the game to throw a desperation pass on the final play. He is 21-of-33 for 175 yards, no TDs and one interception.

    While some may view the move as a sign that Gruden has given up on this season and is looking to the future, Simms and his teammates say nothing is further from the truth.

    "We're trying to win now," Simms said. "Who's to say we can't win four in a row. No one's given up."

    Rookie receiver Michael Clayton, who leads the club with 19 receptions for 240 yards and one TD, agreed.

    "There's still time to do great things this season," Clayton said.
  2. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    As a Longhorn fan I want to wish Simms the best of luck, he is getting his chance and I hope he can make the most of it.
  3. joseephuss

    joseephuss Well-Known Member

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    It is kind of ironic that his first pro start will be the same weekend of the Texas-OU game. Too bad Dallas isn't playing against him this weekend. They could just blitz Roy every play. :p
  4. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    Good thing for Simms he will not have to see Roy lined up across from him in his 1st start as a pro.
  5. StateCollegeCowboy

    StateCollegeCowboy aka BostonCowboy

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    This should be very interesting. Watching Simms for the rest of the year will be fun. He has to be the biggest enigma coming out of the draft as a QB in a loooong time.
  6. InmanRoshi

    InmanRoshi Zone Scribe

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    I hope he sparks the Bucs on a winning streak which causes them to eclipse Buffalo in the win column.
  7. The30YardSlant

    The30YardSlant Benched

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    Damn Longhorns....... :D Oh well, Texas A&M has produced Dante Hall, Dat Nguyen, Dan Campbell, Kevin Smith, and many others.
  8. Juke99

    Juke99 ...Abbey someone

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    I've always like Simms...I wish him the best of luck until they play us again.

    His dad's a pretty ok guy too...I'm sure he's proud.
  9. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    I really wanted to draft him (I believe in pedigree), but if we did we'd have never gone after Henson.

    Good kid, but I think we'll end up with the better QB.
  10. Juke99

    Juke99 ...Abbey someone

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    Nice Rodney tribute...

    I agree about Henson vs Simms...
  11. junk

    junk I've got moxie

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    Sounds like little Chrissy is still bitter. He thought he was going to be a first rounder.
  12. Kangaroo

    Kangaroo Active Member

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    Hey Heavy one of your boys is now the starting QB for my almater and he is rocking and rolling they put up 177 points in 4 games

    Yea Dustin Long is now starting for the Sam Houston State Bearkats
    Long, Dustin 4 184.29 117-78-5 66.7 1286 12 83 321.5

    He put up some good numbers under kilthorpe to lol

    Thanks for the loan out he has gotten us to 3-1 only lost being a 31-33 game and we even put a 60 spot up in the 1st game

  13. LaTunaNostra

    LaTunaNostra He Made the Difference

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    A bit more on Simms before this gets moved to the NFL Zone.

    Rick Gosselin: No time like now for Simms

    07:01 PM CDT on Wednesday, October 6, 2004

    The goal of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is no longer to make the playoffs. It's to find out if Chris Simms can be their quarterback of the present and future.

    After a month, the Buccaneers are winless and in last place of the NFC South, already four games back of the Atlanta Falcons. Tampa Bay hits the road now for consecutive games at New Orleans and St. Louis – so 0-4 could quickly become 0-6.

    That's why coach Jon Gruden decided to bench his former Pro Bowl quarterback Brad Johnson and turn the huddle over to Simms, who will make his first NFL start Sunday against the Saints.

    If Gruden stuck with Johnson and the Bucs somehow resurrected to finish the season at .500, what would they have accomplished? They would still be an old team with an old quarterback and no future. Better to get Simms, wide receiver Michael Clayton and all the other youngsters on the field and find out what they have for 2005.

    So Sunday is day one in the rebuilding program of Gruden and general manager Bruce Allen. There is no longer any sense of urgency to get holdout wide receiver Keenan McCardell in. He's not going to save this season for the Bucs. Jerry Rice in his prime couldn't save this season.

    So get the young guys on the field. Simms will be making his first start since the 2003 Cotton Bowl, when he passed for 269 yards and two touchdowns against LSU. But with Roy Williams, Cedric Benson, Derrick Johnson, Derrick Dockery, Cory Redding that day – Simms may have left behind a more talented team at Texas than he has now in Tampa.

    NFL Q&A

    Q: Do you think teams have finally figured out the salary cap? For about five years, we have had teams come out of nowhere making it to the Super Bowl. Do you think teams will start to figure out how to build with it and be pretty frugal or will teams continue to bow down to the urge of big-name free agents? I see teams like Minnesota, Philadelphia, Washington that went out and overspent on some free agents that won't see the end of the contract and think these teams have a three-year window before they enter salary cap hell. I am very impressed how teams like New England, Buffalo and Pittsburgh refrained from overpaying their older players.

    Jason Harter

    GOSSELIN: I think most teams have figured out the salary cap (except, of course, for Washington, where Dan Snyder continues trying to buy a championship).

    First off, you don't see anywhere near the quality of player available in free agency that you did five and 10 years ago. Teams do not devote countless hours devising ways to buy new players. They spend their time figuring out ways financially to keep the ones they have. If there's a player available in free agency, there's generally a reason he's available. Teams don't let their difference-makers out into the marketplace any more.

    There's a two-pronged way to beat the cap – draft well and spend smart. The draft allows you to gather cheap labor. You get those players for four years before they become eligible for free agency. That's why league-wide you see 75 percent of the draft picks make it annually. The less money you spend on your young players, the more money you can spend on your stars.

    The Colts annually have one of the youngest rosters in the NFL because so much of their salary cap is devoted to Peyton Manning, Marvin Harrison and Edgerrin James. The Philadelphia Eagles pieced together the model blueprint at the turn of the decade – draft well, play them early and re-sign them in their third seasons.

    The money and stakes rise if teams wait until the fourth and final year of a player's contract to re-sign him. Also, I'd say 80 percent of all salary-cap mistakes come when a team overpays its older players, guys in their 30s. Generally that guy is a marquee name. He wants to be paid for his marquee name – not his diminishing skills. That's why you see players like Emmitt Smith, Jerry Rice and Eddie George getting cut. Old guys can't be at the top end of your pay scale.

    That's the problem the Tampa Bay Buccaneers face right now with holdout wide receiver Keenan McCardell. He's a 34-year-old, non-speed receiver who wants to be paid elite-receiver money. That would entail a long-term contract with a substantial signing bonus. But McCardell's window as an elite player is closing. He's 35 in January. If you give him a six-year contract, you'll like the first year and might like the second – but the third, fourth, fifth and sixth years will become a burden on your salary cap. So the stalemate continues in Tampa.

    You live with your mistakes for a long time. I think most teams have figured that out.

    • • •

    Q: If Team A wants to sign a player off of Team B's practice squad, does Team B have a right of first refusal -- the option to add the player to its active roster?

    Zak K.

    GOSSELIN: Not officially. But when approached by another team, most practice-squad players give their current team a chance to exercise the same option – add them to the active roster. The heavy raiding generally goes on from Thanksgiving until the end of the season, and you'll see practice-squad players being activated on a daily basis league-wide for that reason. If you don't activate him, you will lose him. The practice-squad player logically feels his best chance is with his current team. He knows the system, he knows the coaches and he knows his teammates. He has time invested in, one day, being a player for that team. If he goes elsewhere for a chance to join a 53-player roster, he generally walks in cold without knowledge of the system or coaches. There's a risk factor that's a tradeoff for the pay raise he will receive in moving from the practice roster to the active roster. But, no, there is no "right of first refusal," and a practice-squad player can walk away at any time.

    • • •

    Q: Can you explain to me what's going on with the home teams this season? Whatever happened to the homefield advantage in this league?

    GOSSELIN: The demise of the homefield advantage is maybe the most puzzling thing about this season. Road teams won nine of the 14 games last weekend. The Florida teams annually have had an advantage at home in the opening month of the season because of the humidity. Opponents have always wilted in early-season games there. Yet the three Florida teams are a combined 1-6 this season at home. Green Bay, Kansas City and Tennessee rank among the best homefields in the NFL. They were a combined 20-4 at home last season. This season they are a combined 0-6. The obvious answer is parity – because of the salary-cap system, the talent is has more evenly distributed and any team can beat any other team on any given Sunday. That's the only explanation for Chicago going into Green Bay and beating the Packers and Houston going into Kansas City and beating the Chiefs. I wish I had a better answer to give you on this one. But frankly, I'm as puzzled about this trend as you are.

    • • •

    Q: You haven't been a big fan of Emmitt Smith playing in Arizona. What did you think of his 100-yard game last week?

    GOSSELIN: Good for Emmitt. He still has some unfinished business in the record book, and the Cardinals were the only team that would give him the chance to address that business. The NFL record for 100-yard games was one of them. His 100-yard day against New Orleans allowed him to tie Walter Payton for the NFL record with 77. I hope he gets another one this year so he can have that record, too. There are those Sundays when Emmitt still looks like the old Emmitt. Last week against New Orleans was one of them. But more often than not he looks like an older player just hanging on. It's tough for the elite players to walk away, which is why Jerry Rice continues to play in Oakland. I would have liked to have seen Emmitt retire as a Cowboy. Just as I would have liked to have seen Joe Montana and Rice retire as 49ers. That's my only issue with Emmitt. My memories of him will be his greatness as a Cowboy -- not as a guy playing out the string as a Cardinal.

    • • •

    Q: What do you think becomes of Eli Manning this season?

    GOSSELIN: I think New York's plan all along was to sit Manning as long as possible. If Warner taking the snaps could produce a playoff contender, then the Giants were prepared to let Manning sit all season. There is no rush with this investment. Manning is their future, no question. But that doesn't necessarily make him the present. New York is not a town that likes to hear the word "rebuild." Young quarterbacks – all young quarterbacks – make mistakes. Mistakes get you beat. As long as Warner is making plays and winning, he'll keep the job. If they reach a point where the season is lost (or if Warner gets injured), you'll see Manning. But there is no rush. The Giants took a plan into the season and they are sticking to it.

    • • •

    Q: Are the Kansas City Chiefs fixable?

    GOSSELIN: They are now. I'm not sure they would have been with a Monday night loss to Baltimore. The Chiefs desperately needed a victory to remind them that they were a good team – and a victory at Baltimore on Monday night is a pretty good reminder. If they had gone into their bye 0-4, it would have been a miserable two weeks. I think 10-6 can still win the AFC West, and Kansas City certainly has the talent to get to 10. Gunther Cunningham's defense will improve as the season goes on. Monday night was a good indication of how well that defense can play. It's still early. No one's out of it -- not any of these 1-3 teams: Cincinnati, Green Bay, Tennessee or Washington. The more the Chiefs get Priest Holmes the football, the more they will like their season.

    • • •

    Q: Ben Roethlisberger is unbeaten in his first two NFL starts at quarterback. Does that surprise you? Could he be better than Manning and Rivers?

    GOSSELIN: It's still way too early to tell that. But let me say this – there were some teams that had Roethlisberger as the top quarterback on their draft boards last April. He's a talented guy who skipped his senior season and came from a small conference (MAC). Most people thought he'd be at least a year away from being a big-time contributor. But Roethlisberger didn't throw the ball all over the field to win those games. This is not Dan Marino we're talking about here. Roethlisberger is playing on a team that runs the ball and plays defense. Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl playing for a team like that. The Steelers aren't asking Roethlisberger to overextend himself. He's functioning well as a member of the supporting cast.

    • • •

    Q: Is this a good time for a bye for the Eagles?

    GOSSELIN: When you're winning and playing well, no time is a good time for a bye. You want to keep playing and continue your roll. If Andy Reid had his way, he'd probably want to play the next 12 weeks in a row. The way the Eagles are playing, Reid would probably want to play the next 12 days in a row. If I could insert my own bye into the schedule, I'd take it as late as possible in the year. The last bye week in the 2004 schedule is Nov. 14. That's when I'd want my bye. It would give your players who are injured or nicked a week to heal up for the stretch run. Now on the flip side, if you're losing or struggling, any time is a good time for as bye. That gives you a chance to regroup.
  14. Danny White

    Danny White Winter is Coming

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  15. The30YardSlant

    The30YardSlant Benched

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    Chris Simms got JACKED UP!!! :D

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