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Bucs are hoping Ali Marpet’s latest transition is a snap

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Buccaneers right guard Ali Marpet has made a pretty good transition from Division III to the NFL. Now, they’re asking him to do something he’s never done before in a game.

According to Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times, the Buccaneers are going to experiment with moving the 2015 second-rounder at center this spring, which has meant more time hanging with quarterback Jameis Winston (or anyone else who happens to be behind him).

“I’ve been able to get with Jameis a couple of times, and otherwise, I’ve snapped with anyone who will catch the ball,” Marpet said. “I go until I feel good, whether that’s 20 snaps or 100, whatever it ends up being. . . .

“I’m a center. It’s always been in the back pocket. I can still play guard. I know. I’ve played guard. I imagine they’re not saying ‘You’re the starter, no matter what you do.’ But they like the idea, so we’re going to try it.”

That’s some confidence considering he’s never snapped in as much as a high school game. And they have veteran centers Evan Smith and Joe Hawley on the roster, so they’re not locked in if it doesn’t work. But there are indications it might.

Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said Marpet could become a “dominant, next-level center.”

If that happens, and they get anything out of last year’s big-ticket free agent guard J.R. Sweezy (who is back after missing the season with a back injury), it could provide a boost for their line.

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4 Responses to “Bucs are hoping Ali Marpet’s latest transition is a snap”
  1. Slow Joe (Bucs fan) says: Apr 21, 2017 4:24 PM

    This would certainly improve the run blocking. Not sure about pass protection, though. I haven’t heard great things about Sweezy in that regard.

  2. kamthechancellor says: Apr 21, 2017 6:14 PM

    *Yucs

  3. dway096 says: Apr 21, 2017 8:43 PM

    14-5 Yuc

    Marpet is a future All-Pro, at center, at guard it doesn’t matter. This is about JR getting a starting job and trying to justify the decision to sign him. I think the experiment is more about seeing if Sweezy can come back and be himself. If not I’d assume Market goes back to Guard.

  4. petedutcher says: Apr 21, 2017 10:23 PM

    He actually HAS played Center before. Great research!

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