THE ALL-TIME BUCCANEER TEAM After 42 seasons, enough time has passed to produce an all-time Buccaneer team. Not just starters but a full 53- man roster of the best players to have worn the Tampa Bay colours in the NFL.    The 53  includes special teamers, specialists and the need for rotational and back-up players.  Some selections were obvious, others perhaps a little controversial but that is what off-season articles are for.  And you have to take into consideration the eras that each player appeared in. Comparing a receiver or a QB rating from the modern game to that of the 1980s is not realistic. Now we move on to the running backs and I have found space for five of them on the 53-man roster, three pure backs, one hybrid and one proper blocking full-back. The first spot was easy of course in the form of James Wilder.  30 years on from leaving the Bucs, he remains the franchise’s all-time leader in rushing yardage and also the leader in receptions.  A true all-round back, he was the first from the position to make a Pro Bowl, the first to post a 200- yard game and truly deserves to be in the Ring of Honor. Backing him up are two very different styles of back, the speedy and elusive Warrick Dunn who would certainly improve the character of any team he was on for his off-field work.   The late Ricky Bell has to be included in the team as well as anyone who saw his performances for the 1979 playoff team would attest to.   He was a true power runner in an era when those were coveted above all others. The Buccaneers’ all-time touchdown scorer Mike Alstott also is a certainty for this team.   Multiple Pro Bowls and highlight reel plays, the A-Train offers something different to the three backs already on the roster.    He also was an excellent receiver, probably second only to Wilder in team annals. This leaves no place for Doug Martin (which season version would you get?), Michael Pittman, the Cadillac, Errict Rhett, Reggie Cobb or even Earnest Graham.  All very good backs but not able to dislodge the main quartet on our team. Which leaves one place for a pure blocking back.   Lorenzo Neal had a great NFL career in the role but only one season in Tampa which means he loses out to Adger Armstrong who did so much for James Wilder during his best years.  “Lead Dog” as he was known, beats out other potential candidates such as Johnny Davis. NEXT - THE SECONDARY
QB DE QB DT QB DT RB James Wilder DE RB Warrick Dunn DE RB Ricky Bell DE RB Mike Alstott DT FB Adger Armstrong DT TE LB Derrick Brooks TE LB Hardy Nickerson TE LB Lavonte David WR Mark Carrier LB Richard Wood WR Kevin House LB Hugh Green WR Mike Evans LB Shelton Quarles WR Vincent Jackson LB David Lewis WR Joey Galloway CB WR Keenan McCardell CB LT CB LG CB C FS RG SS RT S T S G KR OL PR K P SPEC