New Bucs QB coach Van Pelt loves Josh Freeman
One of the benefits of the rookie minicamp over the weekend was the opportunity it afforded us to get an audience with Alex Van Pelt, the Bucs' new quarterbacks coach.
His hire was an important one given the task before him: Developing Josh Freeman into the franchise quarterback the team believes he can be.
So, I asked Van Pelt to offer a few first impressions about Freeman gleaned from their time together during the past couple of months. Freeman and Van Pelt have been spending a lot of time dissecting film and going over concepts.
The main thing Van Pelt has learned about Freeman, he said, is that, "He’s never a second offender. If you ask him to do something, he corrects it immediately and applies it. The next week, it’s not like, ‘Hey, remember, get your feet right.’ He’s correctable. You say it one time and he’s got it. . . You’re looking for a guy like that. Instead of harping on something, he’s got it. That’s the main thing. Obviously, he’s got all the ability in the world. But the thing I love is that he’s coachable."
That's good news for the Bucs, because Freeman's development is at the center of the club's success on the field this season. Freeman has already called this offseason the biggest of his career because of the opportunity to grow and look back on his nine games of experience.
"His growth from getting in and watching the (film) and everything he did last year -- from there to where he is now, you can see the growth," Van Pelt said. "It’s huge. It’s exponential growth already. And there’s a comfort level, too. Once you’ve been in the system for a year, (you can say), ‘I understand protections, I understand all the issues that go with protections, I understand my reads, my footwork."
The pair will get their first on-field work together when OTAs begin on May 17.