Ask the experts: Tim & Jerry

by Gary Shelton on December 22, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, NFL, Tampa Bay Bucs

Here at, we have doubled our experts with the addition of former Bucs' personnel director and former Seahawks general manager Tim Ruskell. He joins his old friend and co-worker Jerry Angelo, a former personnel director for the Bucs and former general manager of the Bears. Each week, Angelo and Ruskell answer your questions regarding the NFL. Send your questions to with "ask the expert" in the subject line. The most interesting questions will be selected.

Friday, 4 a.m.

Are we down to using index cards for first downs? What did you think of the Dallas’ first down call against the Raiders?

Jerry: I thought it was ingenious. Never saw it measured that way before, but you know what, it made sense. The bottom line he got it right.

Tim: Football is a “game of inches” was the standard cliché for close calls or measurements all these years. In the age of replay and HD and 4k that has to be amended to football is a “game of millimeters” after all, what signifies that better than an index card? I’m confused by

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the outrage. It won’t be long before the refs carry lasers around.

Speaking of strange calls, what about the Steelers’ Jesse James having a touchdown disallowed? Do any of us know what a catch is anymore? And did Bert Emanuel start all of this?

Tim: Yes, Bert was the grandfather of the no-catch phenomenon. A crushing blow to all Buc faithful. The rule now states that the receiver must complete the act of catching the football all the way to the ground. Young Mr. James did not do that.

Jon Gruden went into the Bucs Ring of Honor Monday night amid rumors that he might return to the Bucs as head coach. If either of you ran the Bucs, would you drive down that highway again. In three of his last six seasons, he had a losing record.

Jerry: You know, when you're going to make history, make it because you learned from it. There is no history for something like this. Can he coach? I’m sure he can, but is he the answer the Bucs are looking for? I can’t say that. The league is all over the place given all the attrition that takes place each year with their head coaches. The owners are more clueless than ever. Not just the Glazers, bit most all owners. Who’s to say for sure, but the one thing I don’t want to do if I were an owner. I wouldn't want to do something with little historical evidence.

Tim: Perhaps Jon has learned some things along the way via being an observer. I do believe he deserves another chance and I would also ask this question: Can you come up with anyone better? That’s a hard one. Seriously though: Go get Derrick Brooks to be your GM with Jon Gruden as your HC and let it rain.

Both of you guys spent a lot of years around the Bucs. Who would each of you like to see join the Ring of Honor?

Tim: Joy Culverhouse, You can’t write the true history of the Bucs without bringing up Joy. Some consider her the Grandmother of the #me too movement. I think Tony Dungy and Ronde Barber should and most likely will be the next men up.

Jerry: Tony Dungy, Ronde Barber. Those names will be up there. It’s just a matter of time. Is Simeon Rice going to get into this mix?

Do you think the Giants can hold off the Colts for the No. 2 draft pick?

Jerry: Yes, just watch them play. They blew a big lead at home against one of their divisional rivals. That tells you these G-men aren’t for real. But you have a good point. I’m a big Colts fan. I saw the sleeper the Colts were involved in Thursday night. It might come down to a coin toss.

Tim: The Colts definitely have momentum on their side.

Not based on the record, but based on how they’re playing. Who are the bottom five teams in the NFL.

Tim: Colts, Giants, Bears, Bengals, Browns

Jerry: There are many candidates, here are mine: Browns, Giants, Colts, Bears, Bengals.

Coach of the Year is in a constant flux. But some of the leaders are Doug Marrone of Jacksonville, Doug Pederson of the Eagles and Sean McVay of the Rams. Who would be your pick?

Jerry: Without question, McVay. New stadium, thirty one years old, good division. Turned an anemic offense around, as well as a young quarterback who some, including me, thought was going to be a bust. Hands down he wins it, because he deserves it!

Tim: McVay. His intelligence, energy and toughness have transformed the Rams into a Super Bowl contender. You can make a similar statement about Marrone and Pederson who aren’t far behind. This final stretch and playoff run could easily change my thinking.

Marvin Lewis is making sounds like he mightn’t want to coach the Bengals anymore. Isn’t it about time for the Bengals to consider others anyway?

Tim: Marvin overstayed his welcome by about 3 years. He is completely spent and needs to be put out to pasture to graze with the likes of Jeff Fisher, Mike Shanahan and soon….Pete Carroll.

Jerry: Marvin was done three years ago. The Bengals will eventually do the right thing when it is absolutely totally obvious to the world. In this case I think any fan of football recognizes this from New York to London.

Of the non-playoff teams, which do you see improving enough to make a run next year?

Jerry: The Packers are a given. My favorite are the Colts.

Tim: The easy answer is the Packers but in terms of having a similar bad to good scenario like the Rams / Eagles and Jags you’d have to look at the 49ers.

Josh McDaniel will get talk again as a head coach. Do you think he’s remade his image after the disaster in Denver?

Tim: No, but look for him to be the next Head Coach of the Titans.

Jerry: No, but he’ll get another head job. Because there will be more teams without coaches again this year than candidates to fill them. McDaniel will get back into the mix and find himself on the sidelines again leading a team.

The Predictions

Tampa Bay at Carolina

Jerry: Carolina. Are you kidding? It’s by how much.

Tim: Carolina.  The Buc bandwagon has suddenly turned into the body cart from the movie  The Holy Grail. "Bring out your dead.”

Falcons at Saints

Tim: Saints. The Falcons are missing something. I can’t put my finger on it.

Jerry: Saints. They have something to play for, just as much as the Black Birds. Brees will out-duel his rival.

Seahawks at Cowboys

Jerry: Seattle can’t lose this one. The Cowboys can.

Tim: Cowboys. This year’s Consolation Bowl

Jaguars at 49ers

Tim: Jags. Lets see if they’ve cleared the hurdle of winning when you’re supposed to win. The  Titans were not up to the task and got burned.

Jerry: Jags. Jimmy will get his first ‘ L' as a Niner.

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