Tampa Bay Buccaneers

PFF: Smith, Gholston Among NFL's Best

OT Donovan Smith and DE William Gholston were among the best players in the league at their respective positions during Week 4, according to Pro Football Focus.

Photos from Buccaneers vs. Panthers at Raymond James Stadium.

On Sunday, the Buccaneers fell, 37-23, to the Panthers at Raymond James Stadium, dropping to 1-3 on the season. But the Bucs did see a 100-yard rusher for the first time this season, with Doug Martin picking up 106 yards on 20 carries. After reviewing the game film, Pro Football Focus credits some of Martin's success to rookie offensive tackle, Donovan Smith.

According to PFF, a website dedicated to providing high-level statistics and analysis on all 32 NFL teams, Smith was the second-best offensive tackle in the league during Week 4, though teams playing on Monday night have yet to be graded. He earned a rating of +3.7, falling in behind Buffalo's Cordy Glenn and right above Cleveland's eight-time Pro Bowler, Joe Thomas.

Smith's strong suit, according to the website, was run-blocking. He received a rating of +4.3, more than double any other player at his position.

Washington's Trent Williams was the next-highest rated run-blocker, receiving a grade of +1.9.

By all accounts, it was the best game Smith has played in a Buccaneer uniform. The second-round draft pick out of Penn State had never been rated higher than +.3 in run-blocking.

Defensive end William Gholston was rated as the Bucs' second-best player with a +3.6 rating, enough to tie him for the top spot among the league's 4-3 defensive ends. Gholston was PFF's top-rated 4-3 defensive end rushing the passer and was No. 3 against the run. Through four games, Gholston's rated No. 8 among players at his position. His eight quarterback hits are tied for the fourth-most in the league.

For more from Pro Football Focus, click HERE.

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