Drafted in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft, Tampa Bay Buccaneers guard Ali Marpet has played in 85 career regular season games, starting in all of them. He missed three in his rookie season, five in 2017, and three last year.
Selected one pick before Marpet in that year’s draft, was Dallas Cowboys defensive end, Randy Gregory.
In the same time span, Gregory has played in 38 games. Nearly fifty fewer than Marpet, and only 40% of the games he could have played in the six seasons since being drafted. He’s started just one.
Gregory played 12 games in his rookie year. Then just two in his next, thanks to a 14-game suspension. He was then suspended for the entire 2017 season before getting two more games off for suspension in 2018.
He missed another full season in 2019. For multiple violations. Then, he was suspended for the first six games of the 2020 NFL Season.
The fact he’s even in the league still is surprising, let alone with the same team who drafted him those years ago. For most fans outside of the Cowboys base, they probably remember Gregory as more of a player they heard about once, but not much about lately.
If Locked On Cowboys host Marcus Mosher is right, Bucs fans may get reintroduced to him, tonight.
“This is his first year being a full-time starter”, Mosher said. “In his career with the Cowboys, he has less than 1,000 snaps...if the Cowboys want to win this game, that’s the match-up they have to win, is Randy Gregory going against Donovan Smith...”
Gregory didn’t get the first sack of his NFL career until his second year in the league. He had six in his fourteen games in 2018, and a lot of people thought his time was coming. All that came was the lost 2019 season.
Last year, playing in ten games, he had three and a half. If Gregory gets even half a sack on Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers it’ll give him just eleven one game into his seventh year since leaving the Nebraska Cornhuskers as one of the top pass rushers in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Not a success story by any means. Not a story that’s over with either. If he’s the best chance this Cowboys team has of upsetting the Bucs, then you bet the coaches know it and will be watching him.