By Eric Schmidt

The is a lot of excitement surrounding the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this offseason and count QB Josh Freeman in as one of the cheerleaders. Rookie head coach Greg Schiano has instilled a new attitude surrounding the organization and the players seem to be buying what he’s selling.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a big splash in free agency this year, inking veteran WR Vincent Jackson to a new deal, a move which immediately bolstered the team’s receiving corps. However, it’s not the passing game which has Josh Freeman excited, it’s the ground game which creates the buzz for Freeman.

Speaking to reporters at a youth football camp in Wesley Chapel High School, Freeman was abuzz over the new look the team will have in 2012.

“(Rookies) Doug Martin and Michael Smith, those guys are so talented. You want to get the ball in their hands, get them in space and let them make some moves and make something happen. Obviously, LeGarrette Blount is having good (practices) And one guy, Mossis Madu, that guy is shredding it right now. He is doing an awesome job. Our backfield is going to be great. I’m excited,” said Freeman.

Greg Schiano’s offense will revolve around the running game, and with the addition of OG Carl Nicks via free agency, the Buccaneers will have a top-10 offensive line unit in order pave the way for the running game. The duo of Doug Martin and LeGarrette Blount should have fans thinking back to the days of Warrick Dunn and Mike Alstott. Martin should get the bulk of the running duties and then in the hellish home field conditions in September and October, Blount should be able to steamroll exhausted opposing defenses, much like Alstott did.

A solid running attack was missing last year for the Buccaneers, as they finished the season ranked 30th, averaging just 91 yards per game on the ground. Being able to run the ball in order to put QB Josh Freeman in manageable game situations will help him to recover from a disastrous 2011 season when he turned the ball over 27 times.






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