Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon will make his first career start on Sunday when his team plays the Arizona Cardinals. While the Bucs feel confident in their decision to switch signal callers, there might be reason to think otherwise.
NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah told Arizona Sports 620’s Dan Bickley with Vince Marotta Friday and said that while Glennon might be able create big plays, he doesn’t believe it to be an upgrade and thinks the Cardinals defense can find ways to exploit the rookie.
Jeremiah, a former scout for three different NFL teams, said he doesn’t see the move to Glennon from former starting QB Josh Freeman as an upgrade for the team, but rather a move they made with their future in mind.
“I think it’s probably a little early for him to kickstart his career as a starter in the National Football League,” Jeremiah said. “But I think it just got to the point where they’d seen enough from Freeman and they want to see what they’ve got with Glennon.”
Head coach Greg Schiano had been rumored to be frustrated with Freeman’s play since taking over before the 2012 season. Freeman, in his fifth year in the NFL, had a promising start to his career with an impressive 2010 season, but his production has declined since then. While Glennon presents a fresh start for the winless Bucs, Jeremiah isn’t convinced their style of play will be much different.
“The ironic thing to me is they’re kind of similar guys,” Jeremiah said. “They’re both big guys, they’ve got strong arms. They both can be streaky, yet they can force the ball down the field, squeeze it into tight windows and you think it’s the best throw ever. And then on the next series they try and do the same thing and it gets picked off. So it’s kind of a hero or zero, live by the sword, die by the sword brand of football.”
Jeremiah isn’t completely down on Glennon, however, adding that pairing him up with downfield threats Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams could be difficult to defend. Glennon’s size, measured at 6-foot-6, allows the Bucs to play what Jeremiah calls, “tall ball,” where the quarterback and receivers play above the defense.
Where the Cardinals can exploit Glennon is by putting pressure on him, which Jeremiah thinks can lead to fumbles for the first-year quarterback.
“If you can get bodies around him, he doesn’t have great pocket presence,” Jeremiah. “He doesn’t have a good feel in there. You can slap the ball free, separate him from the football and really create some turnovers in a hurry.”