The No.54 shirt The NFL is pretty serious these days on players who breach their uniform code. Players can get fined for having shirts untucked, socks not rolled right up or the wrong type of playing shoe. So what would Richard "Batman" Wood have done if he played now? The best-ever Buc to wear No.54 used to wear arm pads adorned with a bat logo and was never seen without his extra image for a game in the early days of the franchise. And he wasn't a bad linebacker in that time either. Ervin Randle took over the 54 jersey and wore it with great aplomb for five seasons, as did Jimmy Williams for a much shorter time. But until 2012, this had not been a number to grace anything near the calibre of player of Wood or Randle. Brian Gant was one of the few replacement teams players to remain on the roster when the strike ended in 1987.  Wesly Mallard was a special teamer but Patrick Chukwurah was not even that. Geno Hayes showed some nice touches on occasions during his four years in Tampa but not enough to take the award away from the Batman. And then along came Lavonte David who did nothing but make nearly every tackle he had a chance for the past eight seasons. And his Pro Bowl appearance and All-Pro status has seen him succeed the Batman as the best-ever No.54.
Click on the player's name for their profile page, Buccaneer career stats and picture galleries Years Player Pos 1976-84 Richard Wood LB 1985-90 Ervin Randle LB 1987 Brian Gant LB 1991 Jesse Solomon LB 1992-93 Jimmy Williams LB 1995-96 Darnell Stephens LB 1998 Mitch Palmer LB 2005 Wesly Mallard LB 2007 Patrick Chukwurah DE 2008-11 Geno Hayes LB 2012- Lavonte David LB