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Buccaneers have one of the most-athletic offensive lines in the NFL

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have one of the most athletic offensive lines in the NFL. Ken Platte of Pride of Detroit looked at every NFL starting lineman's Combine and Pro Day athletic scores, and the Bucs ranked fourth on his combined rankings. That's not entirely surprising: the Bucs have emphasized athleticism in the linemen they've drafted and signed in recent years, and it shows.

Ali Marpet and J.R. Sweezy, the team's two starting guards, rank particularly highly, scoring a 9.46/10 and a 9.8/10 respectively. Left tackle Donovan Smith shows up well with a 6.94/10 (the average tackles cored a 6.23). Right tackle Demar Dotson has no data to mine, but would likely have scored very highly, given his background as a college basketball player.

The only Bucs lineman who put up a below-average score was center Joe Hawley, but Platte notes that there's basically no correlation between success and athleticism at that position. Hawley's also competing with Evan Smith at center, though he isn't much more athletic than Hawley.

Of course, athleticism isn't the same as playing quality. Plenty of quality linemen aren't the best athletes, and plenty of terrific athletes failed as linemen -- just look at the last few years of high first-round picks at tackle, for instance. That's a concern for Donovan Smith and J.R. Sweezy in particular, both of whom are very good athletes but need to improve their footwork and technique, especially in terms of consistency. The Bucs are confident offensive line coach George Warhop can consistently coach up players like this. We'll have to wait and see whether that faith is grounded in reality.