Originally posted on BucsDraft.com News  |  Last updated 1/31/12
We continue our draft breakdown by looking next at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers young core on offense.  The "young core" is the group of players with five or fewer years of experience -- that is, the players who are close to their second contract.  These are the players who will be counted on to carry the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to the playoffs for the next four to six years.

The offensive group below is composed of all players with 5 or fewer years of NFL experience from the Buccaneers current roster (as of 1/30/2012).  In addition, I have added the practice squad players who have already been offered contracts for next season.

2012 Young Core Offense

QB: Johnson, Josh (4th year); Freeman, Josh (3); Carpenter, Rudy (3); Ratliff, Jeff (3) RB: Lumpkin, Kregg (3); Blount, LeGarrette (2); Madu, Mossis(0) FB: Lorig, Erik (2) WR: Spurlock, Micheal (4); Stroughter, Sammie (3); Williams, Mike (2); Parker, Preston (2); Benn, Arrelious (2); Briscoe, Dezmon (1); Gant, Ed (1); Webber, Raymond (0, IR) TE: Stocker, Luke (0); Pianalto, Zack (0); Franklin, Colin (0) T: Lee, James (4); Dotson, Demar (3); Hardman, Derek (2); Ingersoll, Mike (0) G: Zuttah, Jeremy (4); Larsen, Ted (2); Riley, Chris (0) C:
There is no heir apparent at Center on this chart, and clearly that's going to become important in the next couple years. Current starting center Jeff Faine is about to start his 10th NFL season in the middle of the trenches: can he keep going? At this point you have to prepare for the day he finishes.  Recently, Jeremy Zuttah has been filling the role.  Ted Larson also played center in college.  So while there may not be a designated Center in the young core, there are players available.
There are currently no fifth year players on this chart, which implies there are no significant offensive needs going into the 2012 draft.  That does not imply that the Buccaneers should not draft offensive players, just that there is no impending hole in the roster which needs a body.
If there was an area to pick, the young offensive line group has only 2 of 7 players who were drafted coming out of college.  This could be the year to add some draft-caliber talent to begin the development of capable replacements.  All the other offensive positions have at least one player who entered the NFL by draft pick, including fullback.
Will the new coach mean a change in direction for the mix in this group?  While the Shiano hiring is just days old, the Rutgers offensive depth chart shows a player distribution similar to the player distribution above, including the existence of a dedicated fullback position.  These young players will get every chance next year to solidify their place on the team.  
The result of this analysis is simple: I do not expect any specific positional targeting on the offensive side of the ball by the Buccaneers on draft weekend.

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