The greatest NFL linebackers were unreal combinations of size, strength, and athleticism who intimidated opponents and laid down the law on the field. As a sack artist, L.T. Tampa Bay Buccaneers All-Time Roster. In 1975, Ham earned the Defensive Player of the Year award as a member of the Steel Curtain. To review the positions discussed so far, visit the All-Time Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team home page. Kirkland was a member of the All-Decade team in the 1990s. David is amongst the most underrated players of this generation at any position. He was versatile, able to line up as a linebacker or a defensive end, but he primarily played linebacker during a career spent with the Rams, Steelers, Panthers, and 49ers. 30 Greatest Buccaneers of All-Time ... of need in a more effective way rather than keeping five inside linebackers on the roster. Below you will find brief accounts of the Buccaneer careers of 10 outside linebackers, all nominated for inclusion on the All-Time Team. © Copyright 2020 Endgame360 Inc. All Rights Reserved. His body of work falls behind Luke Kuechly and Bobby Wagner, but not by much. New Orleans Saints (5-2) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-2) All-time record: New Orleans leads the all-time series 36-21. The top 5 linebackers in the NFL 5. He was stellar in pass coverage, and over his 12-year career, Ham snagged 32 interceptions – often after baiting quarterbacks to throw the football into the flat where he lay in wait. His technical know-how and workman-like approach to the game of football were the perfect fit for the blue-collar Steel City. His combination of size and speed helped blaze the trail for the likes of Charles Haley, Derrick Thomas, DaMarcus Ware, and Lawrence Taylor. The following is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers all-time roster, browsable by last name or position. Before retiring, Bell went on to win two AFL titles and one Super Bowl championship. NFL.com senior analyst and personnel guru Gil Brandt ranks the greatest linebackers in NFL history. He seemed to relish inflicting physical pain on every opponent. Lavonte David, Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (Editor's Notes: Quarles and Ervin Randle, two Buc standouts who started at both inside and outside linebacker at some point in their respective careers, will be considered among the inside 'backers, as that is where they had their most significant achievements. Breaking down an all-time performance by Patrick Mahomes against the Buccaneers 462 yards for the quarterback, an an important win for the Chiefs. And so I bring you, the ALL TIME, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team: OFFENSE: QB- Doug Williams- Forget being a trend setter by being the first full time African-American starter at … Standing 6-foot-3 and weighing in at a relatively light 220 pounds, Lambert prided himself upon taking on blockers and dishing out punishment. How the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Linebackers Measure Up Among the NFL’s Best Daryl Smith kept chugging along at age 34 in his first season with the Buccaneers. Rickey Jackson (17), Pat Swilling (42) and Sam Mills (45) were all recognized by Brandt for their play. He played for the Kansas City Chiefs and won the NFL Defensive Player of the Year award in 1969. The Washington Redskins have had several linebackers that could impact a game from the outset over their illustrious history. In this scheme, the Bears overloaded the line of scrimmage in all-out attack mode — so Singletary could roam free and take out the trash. All-time Passing Leader: Jameis Winston 1,563/2,548, 19,737 yds, 121 TD . For Nitschke, the dominance included his very own MVP performance in the 1962 NFL Championship Game, when he recorded several tackles, two fumble recoveries, and one batted ball that led to an interception in a 16-7 win versus the New York Giants. In drop back coverage, Lambert’s soft hands took down 28 interceptions over the course of his 11-year career that saw him make nine Pro Bowls. 30 Greatest Buccaneers of All-Time; 15 Greatest Pass Rushers of All-Time; History. Bobby Bell is a six-foot, 228-pound three-time Pro Bowler. Read more: NFL: 10 Records That No One Has Been Able to Break He. Derrick Brooks has 19 interceptions, most among Buccaneer linebackers, and he has returned five of them for touchdowns. Pittsburgh’s Steel Curtain had a pair of Jacks who were defensive aces, the aforementioned Jack Lambert and Jack Ham. Lewis was a defensive coordinator in a linebacker’s body. By Bailey Adams @BaileyJAdams22 Jul … During a 14-year career spent with the Eagles, Bednarik lined up at center, left side linebacker, and middle linebacker. Formed in 1976, the Buccaneers had some really, really bad teams for the first part of its history. Quarterbacks and running backs had good reason to fear seeing Derrick Thomas on the other side of the line of scrimmage. He did a little bit of everything on defense. Next: One of the best players in his team’s history. Lawrence Taylor was an unreal combination of size, strength, and speed who was in full-blown attack mode at all times. The two-time All-Pro edge rusher’s 69.5 takedowns rank third in Buccaneers history behind Selmon and Sapp. Next: He led one of the greatest defenses of all time. Opposing offenses quickly discovered it was impossible to scheme against this kind of greatness. Buccaneers T Donovan Smith vs. Saints DE Trey Hendrickson. Here are the 25 hardest hitting linebackers of all-time. But while all these fanbases have ample teams to choose from, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers really have just one: the 2020 Super Bowl squad. All-Time Lists. He played 11 years for the Buccaneers before signing with the Denver Broncos. The two Wisconsin linebackers finished their time at the college level in leading a top-10 defense and accumulating honors. In 2000, Lewis willed the Baltimore Ravens to their first Super Bowl win by limiting opponents to a measly 10 points per game. 1. Derrick Brooks was one of the most technically sound linebackers of his era. 5. Wrong place, wrong time for both as a Buccaneers. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Ray Lewis was a machine. That's tied with Bobby Bell and Karlos Dansby for the most among linebackers. Early-round picks have less commonly been used on linebackers in the '90s and the new millennium, but the Bucs have still made several strong hits, most notably that of Derrick Brooks in 1995. He finished with 25 interceptions, including three returned for touchdowns in 2002, the season in which Tampa’s defense powered the team to a Super Bowl win. David is an elite coverage player for this position and is disruptive all over the field. Despite a few playoff trips in the late '70s and early '80s, the Bucs were tough to watch. He’s truly one of the NFL’s most underrated players of all-time. It is highly recommended that you use the latest versions of a supported browser in order to receive an optimal viewing experience. As a University of Minnesota tackle, Bell finished third in the 1962 Heisman Trophy voting. Home record: 9-15. Seasons: 45 (1976 to 2020) Record (W-L-T): 274-429-1 Playoff Record: 6-9 Super Bowls Won: 1 (1 Appearance) Championships Won *: 1 . He started 166 of a possible 169 games during his career, during which he snagged 20 interceptions, was an eight-time Pro-Bowler, a five-time All-Pro, and a 1967 Hall of Fame selection. As a ruthless pass rusher, not only was Taylor built to wreak havoc but No. NFL: 10 Records That No One Has Been Able to Break He. In the clutch, he rose to the occasion to diagnose plays, stuff the run, bat down passes, and get stops. Next: So good they named an award after him. The Buccaneers placed specialists Ryan Succop, Bradley Pinion and Zach Triner on the Reserve/COVID-19 list, which was created for a player who either tests positive for COVID-19 or who has been quarantined after having been in close contact with an infected person or persons. All-time Receiving Leader: Mike Evans 510 rec, 7,873 yds, 59 TD A member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for 14 seasons, Brooks intercepted 25 passes and returned six for touchdowns. Current team members are listed in bold. With his buzz cut, reliability, and proclivity to inflict pain, Dick Butkus was a true Monster of the Midway. All-Time Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team: Nominated Outside Linebackers. Derrick Brooks. © TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS. Derrick Brooks has 19 interceptions, most among Buccaneer linebackers, and he has returned five of them for touchdowns. Please review their qualifications and vote for two linebackers in the poll to the right. Between 1965 and 1972, Butkus was sent off to the Pro Bowl after each season and was a first-team All-Pro on five separate occasions. What a baller. Among them were three members of the Dome Patrol who helped boost the team from a disastrous 1-15 campaign in 1980. Once again oddly specific, but good news because the Pittsburgh Steelers get four on the list including one surprise. Next: Absolute dominance during a somewhat short career. Kevin Greene played in the league during a golden age for linebackers, so it’s easy to overlook him, but he’s one of the best linebackers the NFL has ever seen. According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Willie Lanier was the first African-American to start at middle linebacker in professional football. Lynch was a five-time Pro Bowler and two-time First-Team All-Pro selection. Ham’s two interceptions versus the Oakland Raiders in the 1974 AFC Championship live on in Pittsburgh lore as the beginning of the Steelers’ dynasty. In Baltimore, he was the traditional centerpiece for a Ravens franchise that has prided itself on stout defense. 5 and 4 who dominated at the same time). 51 jersey and grotesque padding — to blow up ball carriers and strike fear in the hearts of the opposition. He had 13 sacks, 23 interceptions, and 788 combined tackles. How good of a football player was Chuck Bednarik? Bobby Bell (third from left) is among the greatest NFL linebackers ever. Since the team's defensive history is split almost exactly between a 3-4 front (1976-90) and a 4-3 alignment (1991-2003), the All-Time Buccaneers Team will feature four linebackers and four defensive linemen.). The nominations are presented in alphabetical order. Yet, as the team’s lone playmaker, Butkus was still able to answer the bell time and time again. In the Super Bowl win over the Vikings, Lanier put on an epic defensive performance with seven tackles and one interception. He started 167 of a possible 173 games during his 13-year career, so he was always ready to play. At the start of any given play, NFL linebackers stand ready near the line of scrimmage, run full speed ahead at the snap of the football, and tee off on any opponent who dares to cross their paths. All-Time Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team: Nominated Inside Linebackers The nominations are presented in alphabetical order. He finished his Hall of Fame career with 27 interceptions, all of which came between 1968 and 1976. ... Derrick was an invaluable member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the late ’90s and early 2000s. This time he put together his list of the 45 greatest linebackers of all time. From Richard Wood and Dewey Selmon to Derrick Brooks and Shelton Quarles, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a rich history at the linebacker position. As a hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker, Bell could rush the passer, control the edge, and drop back into coverage. He did a little bit of everything on defense. In San Diego, Chargers fans delightfully exclaimed that Junior made opponents say “ow” at the point of attack. Outside Linebacker: Derrick Brooks (1995-2008) Already claiming Warren Sapp 12th overall in the 1995 NFL draft, the Buccaneers claimed Derrick Brooks later in the first round. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Historical Starting Lineups. The Buccaneers add a big-time prospect to their linebacker corps after losing Kwon Alexander this offseason. So good they named an award after him. At 6-foot-1 and 250 pounds, Lewis was arguably the most physically gifted linebacker to ever suit up in the NFL. He was a one-man wrecking crew at linebacker who dominated the game on defense. The Super Bowl XXXVII champion served as a … Lanier, alongside Bobby Bell and Jim Lynch, formed one of the most devastating linebacking units in the history of football. As a 6-foot, 230-pound bowling ball of intensity, Singletary owned the box from tackle-to-tackle to blast ball carriers into the next week. 3. Next: He broke a barrier when he started his pro football career. Many of the all-time great Buccaneers will maintain direct links to these Dungy/Gruden glory years. At that time, it was somewhat of a surprise that the AFL would win out against the NFL in a bidding war for players. Already you've selected two cornerbacks, two defensive ends, one center, one tight end and one punter. These men played in different eras, but they’re all Hall of Fame players (including the men at Nos. 2020 Buccaneers Position Preview: Linebackers The 2020 Position Preview series rolls on today with a look at Tampa Bay’s talented group of linebackers. All-Time Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team home page. He did a little bit of everything on defense. With the 1985 Bears, Singletary helped limit offenses to a miserly 12.4 points per game and steamrolled opponents to a 15-1 record on the way to 46-10 win in Super Bowl XX. In the huddle, he commanded respect due to his fearlessness and tenacity, which more than made up for his lack of size. Statistics courtesy of Pro-Football-Reference.com. Between the tackles, Nitschke controlled the front seven for Vince Lombardi during a dynasty run that resulted in three NFL Championship wins and the first two Super Bowl victories over the course of his 15-year Hall of Fame career. All-Time Lists. Over the course of his 12-year career, Singletary earned 10 consecutive trips to the Pro Bowl alongside two AP Defensive Player of the Year awards. Next: He made a lot of opponents say ‘Ow.’. He entered the Hall of Fame in 2015. In a continuing series, Gil Brandt of NFL.com has ranked his Top 45 linebackers of all time. finished up his career with 132.5 sacks. Levon Kirkland. Throughout its history, the NFL has seen many great individuals at the linebacker position. He could have signed for more money with other teams but stayed in Tampa. | Joe Kohen/Getty Images. That time was good for 460th out of 891 linebackers to record a time in the 3-cone. The following browsers are supported: Chrome, Edge (v80 and later), Firefox and Safari. At middle linebacker, Lanier quarterbacked the defense for his Kansas City Chiefs between 1967 and 1977. Only a player's accomplishments with the Buccaneers are considered. Get Random Greatest Linebackers of All Time - The greatest linebackers of all time are not only the best NFL players to ever play the linebacker position but also some of the most respected and most feared football players of all time. Bucs LB Lavonte David – Photo by: Getty Images. Felled by injuries, he retired from the game of football as the greatest middle linebacker of all time — having mastered his position with a controlled rage. Your votes will determine who makes the team at the position, although the results will not be announced until the entire team is revealed near the beginning of the 2004 season. Warren Sapp, Defensive Tackle (1995 – 2003) Buccaneers defensive tackle Warren Sapp was certainly not just all talk. Like Demario Davis last year, Hendrickson is the breakout star on the Saints’ defense in … Fans are enthused about his return to Tampa Bay as the team’s linebackers coach on Lovie Smith’s staff. Together, Tampa Bay Buccaneers inside linebackers Devin White and Lavonte David comprise arguably the NFL's best linebacking duo of 2020 … It’s a crime he never made a Pro Bowl, yet he was an All-Pro in 1991 and 1992. Which five have been the best to play the position wearing the Burgundy and Gold? Next: His stats prove he was one of the best. The Buccaneers' defense had six sacks against the Vikings in Week 14 and Barrett accounted for two of them. At 6-foot-4, 228 pounds, Bell reportedly clocked a 4.4 in the 40-yard dash while wearing tennis shoes. Kirkland rounds out an All-Time great group of linebackers that easily has snubs. Ray Nitschke was your classic NFL goon and a complete linebacker. Sam Eguavoen He was also a part of the 2002 Super Bowl team. The Chuck Bednarik Award goes to the best defensive player in college football, but he was also one of the greatest NFL linebackers ever. Let’s take a closer look at the key plays. After college, he was drafted by Kansas City Chiefs. Gruber was the best player on some horrible teams. The inside linebackers will get their vote, eventually. In the running game, Lambert was prone to launch himself into the action and crumple opponents into the ground, before standing over them with a menacing glare and authoritative finger-point. However, in our opinion, these 15 players stand out from the rest. Unfortunately, Butkus was never part of a winning regime during his nine seasons with the Chicago Bears. Included are players that played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (NFL) from 1976-2020. Mike Singletary was the face of the Chicago Bears’ 46 defense run by coordinator Buddy Ryan. Next: He made 10 straight Pro Bowls and led a stingy defense. In 1969, Willie Lanier’s emotional leadership sparked his defense to a goal-line stand in a win against the Jets in the AFL divisional game en route to the Super Bowl IV title. David is the Bucs all-time leader in tackles for loss. The nine-time Pro Bowl player, two-time All-Pro, and Hall of Fame is one of the all-time sacks leaders with 126.5, and he also forced 41 fumbles during his 11-year career. The Bucs fought off the Vikings' attempt to replace them as the NFC's sixth seed and now have a two-game edge over the teams just outside the conference playoff picture. Bobby Bell was one of the greatest athletes ever to play professional football. The Buccaneers’ depth isn’t anything special, but Kevin Minter can hold down the fort well enough, and Jack Cichy was a player I liked coming out of college, if he could ever stay healthy. Robert Laberge/Getty Images 1. In 2012, Lewis’s career ended with a 34-31 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII. Greenwood, Mean Joe Greene, and Mel Blount. The browser you are using is no longer supported on this site. We’ll start with the most retirees as we count down to No. All-time Rushing Leader: James Wilder 1,575 att, 5,957 yds, 37 TD . Roberts also came away with a “Poor” performance in the 3-cone test, finishing with a time of 7.2 seconds. In pass coverage, Bell was at his best, as he recorded 26 interceptions for six touchdowns over his 12-year career with the Chiefs. The Buccaneers entered the NFL in … The late Junior Seau was the reason that USC went on to supplant Penn State as Linebacker U. for today’s generation of football fans. Next: A goon who was one of the greatest NFL linebackers of any era. One of the greatest Tampa Bay Buccaneers players is also one of the greatest NFL linebackers ever. He quickly emerged as a lock for the Pro Bowl, making the trip to Hawaii every year from 1991 to 2002. 1. The Hall of Fame player racked up 1,297 tackles during his career, but he was a dangerous pass defender, too. His overall impact on the franchise as a member of the famed 1997 and 1999 defenses cements Nickerson’s status as one of the top 5 Greatest All-Time Buccaneers. Ask opposing defenses if he could play. Defending against the pass, Lambert had both the speed to go man-to-man with tight ends and running backs and the awareness to sit back in the soft zone to crush wide receivers across the middle. From 1993 to 2003, that he anchored the Buccaneers’ secondary with the kind of Rondae Barber. Throughout his career, Butkus stalked the line of scrimmage in his oversized No. Though he never had more than 87 tackles in a season, he’s one of the all-time sacks leaders with 160 quarterback takedowns. Ham was the most technically proficient linebacker of all time. One of the greatest Tampa Bay Buccaneers players is also one of the greatest NFL linebackers ever. Lynch was a five-time Pro Bowler and two-time First-Team All-Pro selection. Imagine a 6-foot-3, 235-pound man wearing a No. Both are among the greatest NFL linebackers ever. The Buccaneers' Week 15 list of protected practice squad players is the same as last week: K Greg Joseph, CB Herb Miller and G John Molchon. Eight of his seasons with the New York Giants overlapped with Lawrence Taylor, and the duo formed one of the best LB tandems in league history. Of all his other scores, only Roberts’ shuttle time of 4.26 seconds falls outside of the “Great” category of 8.0 or higher. Through careful study, he was always one step ahead of the competition. Carson was a nine-time Pro-Bowler, including seven straight from 1981-1987, and he went into the Hall of Fame in 2006. The Buccaneers held the Saints to season lows in yards passing (189) and yards rushing (82), completion percentage (61.3%) yards per play (4.1) and first downs (18) — … Bobby Bell. He was unblockable in the box and ran downhill to punish running backs in the hole. 4. Backed by the perfect storm of prowess, intensity, and strategy, Taylor was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year three separate seasons and took home League MVP honors in 1986. As an eight-year captain, Lambert led a cast of characters that included L.C. From 1976-90, the Buccaneers made a common practice of selecting linebackers early in the draft, spending a dozen first, second or third-round picks on linebackers over that 15-year span, in part because their 3-4 defensive front required the position to be well-stocked. This is sixth installment of our ongoing effort to determine the Greatest Buccaneers at every position. Only a player's accomplishments with the Buccaneers are considered. The Hall of Fame player racked up 1,297 tackles during his career, but he was a dangerous pass defender, too. Harry Carson’s career stats don’t jump off the page — 11 interceptions, 14 fumbles recovered, eight sacks — but he’s still one of the greatest NFL linebackers. Butkus fell victim to his own recklessness and the limitations of medical science of the day. Among those early picks were such outside 'backers as David Lewis, Hugh Green, Kevin Murphy and Winston Moss, all of whom had fairly lengthy runs as starters in Tampa Bay's system. 56 also mastered the timeless art of the strip-sack, where he would crush a pocket passer and hammer out the football in one fell swoop; a play which usually resulted in him scooping up the loose ball and galloping toward the end zone for six. A list of the best Tampa Bay Buccaneers of all time. With his speed and anticipation, Seau was a tackling machine who went on to record more than 100 tackles in six consecutive seasons between 1991 and 1996. Nitschke was quick to deliver a forearm shiver and brawl at the point of attack. Even if we're only considering outside linebackers, as we shall do this week in our continuing series to select the All-Time Tampa Bay Buccaneers team, there are still many outstanding candidates from which to choose. His 1989 rookie season was one of the best the NFL has ever seen. Gil Brandt's greatest NFL linebackers of all time . Although the nine-year veteran posted career lows with 28 tackles and seven assisted tackles, Smith still posted an approximate value of six according to Pro Football Reference. 66 Packers jersey wagging an unforgiving finger on the Frozen Tundra of Lambeau Field while bearing a toothless scowl. All-Time Lists . The Ravens' all-time sack leader continues to pave a path of success that can be matched by only a select few linebackers in NFL history. At the high school and collegiate levels, Bell was an award-winning halfback, quarterback, and tackle. These all-time greats have electrified crowds with their energy and leadership and delivered on the field as some of the NFL's best defensive players ever. At middle linebacker, Jack Lambert set the tone for the gritty Pittsburgh Steel Curtain defense. He had 13 sacks, 23 interceptions, and 788 combined tackles. 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