Griese Wheel

Brian Griese's play against the Jaguars solidified Chris Simms as the Buccaneers' number two. The number three quarterback was two of seven for eight yards in his second appearance as a Buc. The offensive line did not help matters by missing assignments and committing penalties, but in the end it was Griese whom ended up looking bad.

The number three quarterback was two of seven for eight yards in his second appearance as a Buc. The offensive line did not help matters by missing assignments and committing penalties, but in the end it was Griese whom ended up looking bad.

It appears as if Jon Gruden spoke to soon when he referred to Griese as a quick study. Learning the intricacies of Gruden's offense is no easy task, but the quarterback looked befuddled at times in Jacksonville. The sky is not falling. Griese has time to shape up, and will not be relied upon to win games as long as the Bucs are in the play off hunt.

Griese showed signs of trouble in training camp, but he did look sharp on most days. The days that he struggled were glaring, especially when he could not complete the short flat patterns that are so prevalent in the Buccaneers' attack. The other trouble spot was finding throwing lanes. Sometimes it looked as if he had a brick wall in front of him. However, Griese did show good legs getting around that wall in camp.

The biggest benefactor of Griese's poor performance is second year Quarterback Chris Simms. The sophomore has looked poised, and shown a drastically improved handle of the offense. He was 13 of 23 for over 100 yards versus the Jags. Simms improves with every snap he gets. Unfortunately, he will not be ready to take the reigns until next year so Brad Johnson needs to avoid the injury bug for the Bucs to be successful.

The line needs to get healthy to help Johnson stay on the field. The biggest problem caused by the injuries has been the inconsistency up front. The hog mollies simply have not played next to each other enough to gel as a unit. With the proper protection the Griese wheel will not be called upon to squeak, and the heir apparent will have the little bit of time he still needs to grow into the starting role.

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