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Donovan Smith, Ali Marpet look to be the Buccaneers' starters going forward

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are settling into their starting offensive line, and it looks like Ali Marpet's going to be in it after all. Earlier this offseason, some reports suggested that it might take him until the end of the season to get there, but Marpet has been working with the starting offensive line since the last preseason game.

That's a little surprising, really. Marpet's performance was okay against the Vikings, and he did show off his athleticism, but he also displayed some technique and consistency issues that could prevent him from being effective early in his career. And, perhaps more importantly, Garrett Gilkey actually looked decent at right guard (not so much at center). But the Bucs apparently think the Gilkey experiment has run its course, and it's time for the rookie to take over.

Donovan Smith's work at left tackle is less surprising, but also the result of the fact that Kevin Pamphile has been out with injury this week. That doesn't really matter, though: Pamphile played reasonably well, but Smith is set to start at left tackle and he will.