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Bucs Committed To Johnson, Haven’t Ruled Out Bringing In Veteran

by Staff Report on August 16, 2010

Bucs might be searching for new backup to Freeman

After a shaky performance by Josh Johnson, the current back up quarterback left many in Buc Nation wondering whether or not the Bucs would begin the search for an experienced veteran quarterback to back up Josh Freeman. QB Coach Alex Van Pelt told John Ramon of the St. Petersburg Times that Johnson’s “A dynamic guy. He’s got a strong arm, and he can do great things with his legs. Absolutely, his potential makes him interesting to have around. He brings some different elements, and a different style than Josh (Freeman).”

The main reason Van Pelt was hired, was to give the team that veteran presents in the film room and on the field. To help groom the stable of young signal callers on the roster. But after witnessing, what transpired with both Johnson and Rudy Carpenter in the team’s preseason loss to the Dolphins. It would appear offensive coordinator Greg Olson is wavering on the idea of not having a quality veteran guy, just in case the unthinkable happens and the teams future franchise caliber quarterback should succumb to a season ending injury.

“If we got an older guy, it would have to be the right guy. You want it to be a guy who would come in and mentor Josh and not try to unseat him behind the scenes,” said offensive coordinator Greg Olson. “Right now, we feel (Van Pelt) gives Josh that mentor-type role that a veteran backup would provide.

“And this gives Josh Johnson a chance to go through training camp and get some reps. His knowledge and comfort level with the offense have grown, and his decision-making has gotten better. He’s still maturing and has a ways to go, but he’s a hard worker, and he has some ability.”

The fact the team would consider bringing in the right guy, so long, as the player clearly understood he was here for a mentor-ship role and would only see the field due to a devastating injury to Freeman.  Is the first sign the team might not be totally happy with there backups. Not sure it can be overstated that having three quarterbacks who are considered projects is the best way to go about developing one. Having a veteran player that can relate to what Freeman is going through and seeing on a game by game basis would be a wise move. Even with Van Pelt in the fold. Yet at this point, not sure there is a player out there that would meet the criteria the team would deem to good to pass up.

So it comes down to watching how things unfold in 2010 before one could get a clear read if the organization made the right decision or not.

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