A team’s roster is normally judged by wins. That’s a fair statement. But even teams with poor records have players that stand out more than their peers respectively.
The word “elite” gets thrown around a lot and is often mixed in with the wrong groupings of players. You have your quarterbacks who will easily get appointed such a title and some running backs as well who then later fade away along with the position itself.
How about “blue-chip” players? These players make up a strong core of a wining football team as NFL Media’s Bucky Brooks describes them as blue-chippers. He mentions his scouting days with the Carolina Panthers and references former receiver Muhsin Muhammed as a “blue-chip” player, but only during their Super Bowl run.
Brooks goes on to put together a list of teams with blue-chippers — or difference-makers which did not include quarterbacks — on teams and compiles his own list of Top 10 teams with blue chip type players that make up a talented roster, which included the New York Jets ranked at No. 4 with six players and “one on the rise.”
But the Jets have struggled to win their fair share of games in recent seasons just like the Buccaneers. Do the Bucs not have that good of a roster to have anyone considered a blue-chipper?
You can perhaps make a case for a few: Lavonte David, Gerald McCoy, Vincent Jackson, Mike Evans. Maybe Johnthan Banks? Alterraun Verner? What about Clinton McDonald? Brooks labeled Seahawks’ defensive tackle Brandon Mebane as a blue-chipper yet Mebane only had one sack in the past two season. Certainly McDonald deserves the same level of praise.
Again, it’s all an opinion. But after looking at some players listed in Brooks’ article the Bucs could have several players mentioned as well.
This just proves how words like “elite” or the term “blue-chippers” are thrown around loosely and too often.