Glennon The Cannon vs. The Comeback Kid
By Christopher Scali
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers season will officially be underway come Sunday, when the team takes on the New York Jets. In April's draft, the Buccaneers made the decision to bring in rookie QB Mike Glennon out of North Carolina State. The 6-6, 232-pound Glennon finished his college career at NC State with 63 touchdowns, 31 interceptions and had a 132 quarterback rating. Glennon is a very strong pocket passer as he responds very quickly to a collapsing pocket, which is just one thing that I personally love about him. He can throw 30-yard passes with the drop of a hat and reminds me of veteran QB Tom Brady of the New England Patriots in many ways.
First off, they both have a very similar quarterback presence, strong arm strength, stand tall against the rush, and they play with that chip on their shoulder when they hit the field. Ironically, Glennon was 12-for-22 with 121 yards and had two TDs in a preseason contest against the Patriots. Tom Brady gave New England its first Super Bowl win in 2001, so maybe Glennon can sail the Bucs to a Super Bowl title relatively soon. The Buccaneers have revamped their offense - Glennon has many weapons to throw to and with a strong offensive line, he has the potential to be a solid quarterback.
It is clear that NC State gave Glennon all the tools necessary to be successful. His biggest game was against #3 ranked Florida State University in which Glennon passed for 259 yards with two TDs and one INT. Florida State was up 16-0 at halftime, but Glennon never lost his composure and came back firing in the second half. Glennon did have a pretty notable preseason, so I am going to bestow upon him the nickname “Glennon the Cannon.” He has so much potential to succeed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
As of right now, however, Josh Freeman is still the starting signal caller for Tampa Bay. Freeman has had some drastic ups and downs so far in his career. During Freeman's rookie year in 2009, he took the Bucs to the playoffs, which was the team's first postseason appearance since 2002. Unfortunately for Bucs fans, Freeman and the team have struggled mightily since then.
Last season, the "Comeback Kid" finished 2012 with 27 TDs and 17 INTs to go along with a 79.8 quarterback rating. I am not saying that Freeman is a bad quarterback, but the question can't be completely ignored much longer - is it time for a fresh new face under center for Tampa? Freeman has a rocket arm and can execute the read option pretty well, but I do not think he can respond to a collapsing pocket like Glennon can. Freeman’s job is on the line no matter what the coaching staff says and if he does not perform the way coach Greg Schiano expects him to on Sunday, Glennon should be taking the snaps from here on out.
According to ESPN, Bucs management decided to let Freeman play out his contact, creating a “prove it to us" situation. The Buccaneers first four games are against the Jets, New Orleans Saints, Patriots and the Arizona Cardinals. This is not an easy schedule by any means and if Freeman and company fall to 2-2 to begin the season, the switch must be made. All Tampa Bay fans are looking to again experience a winning season, a playoff run, a NFC South crown and of course, another Super Bowl title. The Bucs are starving for those four things and the drought must come to an end at some point. Freeman has a huge test this Sunday and if things sour quickly, Glennon better be ready to take that opportunity and run with it.
Fire those cannons because the Tampa Bay Buccaneers fly to the big apple this Sunday!