The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have published their first depth chart of the year, although it's obviously still a work in progress. As always there are a few surprised to be noted, but it's still too early to draw any definite conclusions from this kind of thing. Still, let's go through some of the more notable depth chart rankings.
On offense, the first thing that jumps out is the fact that Legarrette Blount is the starter at running back, while Doug Martin is listed as the backup. This appears to be running counter to everything we've heard out of training camp, where Martin has consistently taken the majority of the first-team reps and has led the way in most individual drills. Meanwhile, Blount has been inconsistent in passing drills, while Martin has been the clear leader in those exercises. Blount really only shines when there's contact, though, and it looks like he'll get his chance to shine with the first team on Friday during the team's first preseason game.
The other surprise is the fact that Arrelious Benn is listed ahead of Tiquan Underwood, despite Benn's injury and Underwood being one of the stars of training camp. Benn's presence on the depth chart is mostly a formality as the receiver won't be able to play for at least the next couple of weeks, but if the chart can be believed the team still has high hopes for the third-year receiver. Another minor surprise is the fact that Mossis Madu is listed ahead of Michael Smith at running back.
On defense we see very few surprises. Roy Miller is the starting nose tackle, Amobi Okoye backs up Gerald McCoy at three-technique and Gary Gibson is the main backup for Miller. A minor surprise might be the fact that Jacob Cutrera is listed ahead of Rennie Curran at weakside linebacker, but that's about it. On special teams, we see Preston Parker ahead of Sammie Stroughter for the jobs of punt and kickoff returner.
QB: Josh Freeman, Dan Orlovksy, Brett Ratliff
RB: Legarrette Blount, Doug Martin, Mossis Madu
FB: Erik Lorig, Robert Hughes, Cody Johnson
WR: Vincent Jackson, Arrelious Benn, Tiquan Underwood, Wallace Wright, Greg Ellingson, Landon Cox
LT: Donald Penn(PUP), Demar Dotson, Bradley Sowell
LG: Carl Nicks, Mike Ingersoll, Desmond Wynn
C: Jeremy Zuttah, Ted Larsen, Moe Petrus
RG: Davin Joseph, Derek Hardman, Michael VanDerMeulen
RT: Jeremy Trueblood, Jamon Meredith, Jermarcus Hardrick
TE: Dallas Clark, Luke Stocker, Zack Pianalto, Collin Franklin, Drake Dunsmore, Danny Noble
WR: Mike Williams, Preston Parker, Sammie Stroughter, Ed Gant, Armahd Lewis
LDE: Michael Bennett, E.J. Wilson, Jayme Mitchell, Da'Quan Bowers(PUP)
DT: Gerald McCoy, Amobi Okoye, Wallace Gilberry
DT: Roy Miller, Gary Gibson, Frank Okam, Jordan Nix
RDE: Adrian Clayborn, George Johnson, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim, Quintin Anderson
SLB: Quincy Black, Dekoda Watson, Brian Smith
MLB: Mason Foster, Adam Hayward, Najee Goode
WLB: Lavonte David, Jacob Cutrera, Rennie Curran
LCB: Aqib Talib, E.J. Biggers, Myron Lewis, Desmond Marrow
RCB: Eric Wright, Anthony Gaitor, Leonard Johnson, Derrick Roberson, Marquese Wheaton
SS: Mark Barron, Larry Asante, Cody Grimm, Tramain Thomas
FS: Ronde Barber, Ahmad Black, Keith Tandy, Sean Baker
P: Michael Koenen, Eric Guthrie
PK: Connor Barth, Kai Forbath
KO: Michael Koenen, Connor Barth
H: Michael Koenen
LS: Andrew Economos, Andrew DePaola
PR: Preston Parker, Sammie Stroughter
KR: Preston Parker, Sammie Stroughter