Buccaneers vs. Dolphins: William Gholston stands out

Al Messerschmidt

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had one of their rookie defensive ends stand out.

Pro Football Focus grades are fun, but I'm never convinced they're always that meaningful. And when we're talking about preseason games with limited snaps for players, well, it becomes a bigger issue. Still, they went over the Bucs vs. Dolphins mess, and graded a bunch of players.

Here's one grade that stood out to me:

William Gholston (+2.1) played his best game of the preseason so far. He showed great power from the defensive end position where he picked up a hit and a hurry. It was Gholston who came down the line from left end, beating right tackle Dallas Thomas, and forced the fumble from Jonas Gray that set up the game winning touchdown.

Akeem Spence and Johnthan Banks got decent reviews, while Mike James' pass blocking got heavily criticized. The latter's a little interesting to me, because he looked good as a pass blocker to me. Then again, it may be a recognition of blitzers thing rather than a pure blocking thing.

But Gholston there is an interesting mention. He caught a lot of flak from Bucs fans over his previous two games, which I think stems more from too highly elevated expectations than anything else. Gholston will never be a speed rusher, and he never looked like it in college. What he is is a solid run defender who has big potential as a power rusher, but needs to develop. He may also be capable of playing 3-technique on passing downs, because he has a body type that could work there.

And that's basically what we've seen in the preseason, so far: a solid run defender who does little against the pass, but does have potential. I don't know if he can find playing time this season, though. With Trevor Scott's emergence, he may be looking at a year on the inactive list. But it's good to see him show some ability.

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