TAMPA, Fla. If the Tampa Bay Bucs are going to put up a good front this season, Carl Nicks is just the man to help them do it.
The All-Pro left offensive guard, regarded as one of the leagues best with the New Orleans Saints, has the goods to take a solid Bucs offensive line to the next level. The 6-5, 343-pounder was a key element in the Saints ability to pass protect for Drew Brees and open holes for the ground game, and he has a Super Bowl ring to show for his efforts.
Thats why Bucs GM Mark Dominik moved to quickly to sign the fifth-year star out of Nebraska when the free agency window opened in March, paying a bundle at 47 million over five years.
But the investment will be well worth it if the burly 27-year-old lives up to expectations: protecting their greatest asset, franchise quarterback Josh Freeman, improving the passing game and giving top Tampa Bay tailbacks Doug Martin and LeGarrette Blount more room to run.
The Bucs ranked 30th in rushing out of 32 teams last ye...