Battle on the Strong Side

Can Kwon Alexander beat out Danny Lansanah to be the Bucs starting strongside linebacker this season?

Leading up to the draft, there were many thoughts that the Bucs might select a linebacker, but that linebacker was likely to be a middle linebacker. In the fourth round of that draft, the Bucs did select a linebacker, however, that linebacker was outside linebacker Kwon Alexander. It was at that moment that the battle for strongside linebacker between Danny Lansanah and Alexander began.

“Danny’s been our interception master all of OTAs,” middle line backer Bruce Carter said of Lansanah. “I think he (even) had one today that he dropped. He’s a great player, a guy that has a lot of experience on our team and a lot of leadership. I’m excited to play alongside him.”

Lansanah did have three interceptions in 2014, two of which were returned for touchdowns. Despite that production, Alexander does pose a legit threat to Lansanah's starting position.

"Oh God, the kid's got a motor," Carter said of the Bucs' fourth round pick. "He's running all day. He came in and he's very smart and intelligent as a player. I don't think he's really had any setbacks since he came in. He's done an awesome job."

Alexander may be a rookie, but he brings much more speed and athleticism than Lansanah. If Alexander is able to win the battle at strongside linebacker, Lansanah would still have a significant role for the Bucs on special teams and as a valuable versatile backup capable of playing any linebacker position.

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