Every year, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers pay homage to someone, usually either a former player or coach, who distinguished himself and brought glory to the team with his efforts by inducting him into their Ring of Honor. This season, former cornerback Ronde Barber will become the 13th member of the Ring of Honor, joining Lee Roy Selmon, John McKay, Jimmie Giles, Paul Gruber, Warren Sapp, Derrick Brooks, Mike Alstott, Doug Williams, John Lynch, Malcolm Glazer, Jon Gruden and Tony Dungy.
We at Tampa News Force, upon hearing the idea mentioned in a somewhat joking fashion on the Mike Calta radio program, have come up with the completely original idea of endorsing former kicker Martin Garmatica for induction into the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Ring of Honor next season. Here is our basis for why Mr. Gramatica is not only worthy of this honor now, but that it’s kind of shocking it hasn’t happened already:
- As a reliable point producer, he was a key contributing member of the team during one of the few, brief periods when they weren’t horrible. Including the 2002 season which culminated in the Bucs winning Super Bowl XXXVII in January, 2003.
- He and his family have a charitable foundation that builds homes for combat wounded veteranshttps://gramaticafamilyfoundation.org/ (The foundation has a charity kickball tournament scheduled for October 5th at the Ed Radice Sports Complex in Westchase)
- He had his own bobblehead. His own bobblehead! How many kickers have had their own bobblehead? That was a rhetorical question to which the answer is “Not damn many, I’ll tell you that, Jimbo.” Do YOU have your own bobblehead? The answer to that non-rhetorical question is no. No, you do not.
- He’s one of ten NFL kickers from the last 30 years that anybody even remembers:
- Adam Vinatieri
- Martin Gramatica (at least six dummies drafted him on their fantasy teams THIS YEAR. I’ll bet.)
- Sebastian Janikowski
- That guy that whiffed in the Super Bowl for the Bills
- That guy for the Cardinals that blew his knee out jumping around like a maniac
- That guy that whiffed in the playoffs last year for the Bears
- That guy the Bucs took in the 2nd round of the 2016 draft WTF!!!
- Andy Mortenson or something like that, I think. For the Saints or the Falcons maybe. I don’t know.
- Donald Igwebuike
- Derek Jeter
As you can plainly see, that’s four complete bullet points and that was enough to get me a “Best Actor” nomination for a Creative Loafing 2019 Best of the Bay Award (all four bullet points referenced my work in “Swamp Jackers”) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gyzBtY5P8jE
Do the right thing, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and all registered voters; put Martin Gramatica into the Ring of Honor! Because at least one writer for Tampa News Force said so.