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Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Ronde Barber was recently interviewed by Steve Duemig of WDAE in Tampa Bay and talked about cornerback Aqib Talib. Barber spoke highly of Talib's work ethic and his dedication to the Buccaneers in the offseason. When asked if the controversial cornerback had been scared straight, because of an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charge that was recently dropped, Barber had this to say.
His decision to stay in Tampa and be here for I think almost 100 percent of the workouts, and train in the offseason, which he'd never done before, he'd always gone home - I think those things just speak to his level of dedication. Whether you call it scared straight or really just wanting to realize his talent. Either way, he was here.
Talib has had some serious accusations against him. Talib does have a reputation for being a problem off of the field. The fact that a player with the pull on the Buccaneers franchise like Barber is complementing him, speaks volumes to how hard he's worked this offseason. Hopefully it pays dividends in the regular season.
Stick with this StoryStream for more on the 2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers preseason. For all things Bucs, head over to Bucs Nation, and for complete coverage of all 32 teams across the league check out SB Nation's dedicated NFL hub.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive tackle Donald Penn has been removed from the active/non-football injury list, according to a Tweet from the team. Penn will be able to begin practicing with the team immediately, but is not expected to play in Friday's preseason game against the Tennessee Titans. Penn had been sidelined by a calf injury since the start of camp. Demar Dotson is expected to start in Friday's game.
The 2012 NFL season will be Penn's seventh year in the league, having signed as an undrafted free agent with the Minnesota Vikings in 2006 but debuted for the Bucs in 2007. He has started every game for the team since the 2008 season, and was named as a Pro Bowl alternate in 2011.
Stick with this StoryStream for more on the 2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers preseason. For all things Bucs, head over to Bucs Nation, and for complete coverage of all 32 teams across the league check out SB Nation's dedicated NFL hub. And don't miss SB Nation on YouTube:
Tiquan Underwood might be most well-known for getting cut, but he's doing his best to make sure that doesn't happen this time around with Tampa Bay.
The former Jaguars' seventh-rounder out of Rutgers was on the Patriots' roster in the days leading up to the Super Bowl this February, but didn't get to play in the big game: the Pats cut the third-year receiver the Saturday before the game.
But in Tampa Bay, Underwood is hoping to make the squad. He had three catches for 79 yards - both team highs - in the preseason opener against Miami. Underwood is turning heads around camp, and appears a likely pick to make the final roster as an important receiver for the Bucs.
When focused, Underwood has looked every bit of a No. 3 wide receiver making acrobatic catches and running precision routes. Clocked at 4.31 in the 40-yard dash, Underwood displays elite speed on a consistent basis, which gives him value as a return specialist as well. Over the past few practices, Underwood has taken reps with the second team in 11-on-11 drills, and should easily make the active roster.
Underwood is lucky to have an old friend in Tampa Bay: his former coach at Rutgers, Greg Schiano, is the new Buccaneers head coach.
"Will he make the team? I don't know,'' Schiano said. "That's really going to be up to him. He did have a good game the other night, but I think consistency is going to be the key for him."
For more on the Bucs and their training camp, check out Bucs Nation.
With the regular season just two weeks away, everyone is giving out their predictions when it comes to the newly released win totals out of Las Vegas.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were given an over/under of six wins for the 2012 season, and there are a couple of dissenting opinions within the network. While Matt Ufford at the SB Nation YouTube page (Subscribe won't you!) thinks that the Bucs will win less than six games, Sander over at Bucs Nation thinks the new coaching staff will be the big difference between this year and last year,
Don't forget that this team started out 4-2 and beat both the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints in those first four games. And during their losing streak they still suffered single-score losses to the Chicago Bears and Tennessee Titans, and actually came close to beating the Green Bay Packers as well. This is not a team without talent, but a team that collapsed because of maturity issues and a lack of fundamentals. Guess what the team has been trying to instill in its players this year? Maturity and fundamentals. That alone should provide the Bucs with a few more wins.
While its unlikely that the Bucs will have the same sort of run that it had for the last half of the year, their schedule is really tough this year with games against the NFC East and the always strong NFC South.
The time is coming for the Buccaneers (and the rest of the NFL) to pare their rosters down to size. For the Buccaneers, that means whittling their receiving corp to the ones they believe they need most.
The Buccaneers run deep at the position, so Gant's lack of catches during the preseason thus far has been worrying for those who looked in his direction for some unexpected production.
Stroughter hasn't made much noise either during the preseason, but has contributed on special teams, something Gant can't say for himself.
Five Buc receivers are all but ensured of making the opening day 53-man roster, with Jackson, Mike Williams, Arrelious Benn, Preston Parker and Tiquan Underwood looking like solid makes. Will there even be room for either Gant or Stroughter when the time comes?
For more Tampa Bay Buccaneers coverage, visit Bucs Nation.
Adrian Clayborn could have a big year for the Bucs in 2012.
New Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano joined WDAE-AM radio in Tampa on Wednesday to talk about a number of things relating to his brief tenure on the job. When the topic of penalties came up, Schiano surprised some by saying that he does not want his Bucs to rank among the teams that draw the fewest flags.
The reason is simple: Schiano wants his team to be aggressive. That said, he was also quick to point out that he wants his players to be disciplined and not take stupid penalties:
"The selfish penalties are the ones where you're angry, so you're going to relieve your anger and do something that hurts the team. Whether you shove a guy, punch a guy, whatever -- that's selfish. The silly penalties are the ones where you line up offsides ... You're just not paying attention to details.
I don't want to slow our guys down too much that way. It's a fine line between being a physical, aggressive football team and getting a flag. You gotta be careful. I don't ever want to be the least penalized team in the league, because I don't think you're trying hard enough then. But I certainly do want to be in the top 10. That's where you should be. You should be -- five through 10 is a great place to be as a penalized team."
Schiano emphasized that he wants his Bucs to stay away from late hits, offsides, false starts and other mental-error penalties that could cost his team.
The Tampa Buccaneers have said that they are interested in former Florida Gator and Olympic sprinter Jeff Demps, and the lastest news is that the Bucs are now considered to be the favorite in landing his services. Demps's agent has said that a decision could come as early as Monday.
If Demps does sign with the Bucs, the decision as to where he would play comes into view. While at Florida, Demps was an all-around player that would see time at running back, wide receiver and also return kicks. The Bucs would be smart to move Demps all over the field and have him run the ball on sweeps or quick passing routes, while letting his speed and athleticism do the rest and make a big play.
To make the most impact with Demps's speed, the team could also place him on special teams to return punts or kicks. In his last season at Florida, he averaged 25 yards per return. The Bucs do have concerns about ball security on returns, so Demps could fit right in at that position.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback E.J. Biggers has been out of training camp since he suffered a foot injury on the first day of practice. At first the injury was not a big concern with initial reports saying that Biggers would be out two weeks, but now head coach Greg Schiano came out today and said that Biggers will not be ready for the start of the regular season.
It is possible that Biggers could be out two months from when he first suffered the foot injury. Since Biggers did participate in that first training camp practice he is not able to be placed on the physically unable to perform list which means he will be taking up a roster spot until he is healthy.
The cornerback depth is an issue for the Bucs so they will need to get Biggers back in the lineup as soon as possible, but in the mean time they may have to reach and play Myron Lewis or Anthony Gaitor.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Arrelious Benn has been out since suffering a knee injury on the first day of camp. Though he is progressing, the Bucs are reporting that he will likely miss the remainder of the preseason.
Head Coach Greg Schiano has stated that the team will wait until after camp to evaluate Benn's status. No timetable has been set for his return.
The third-year receiver finally appeared in practice on Monday and Tuesday, where he was seen doing some running. Schiano was encouraged by Benn's return to practice, though he acknowledges that Benn will likely be our for several more weeks. Said Schiano, "[I]t’s good to have him back out there running and that’s the first step, getting back on the grass."
Though he's not quite the local icon that Tim Tebow is, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are very interested in signing former University of Florida football player and Olympian Jeff Demps, according to Pewter Report.
Demps, who has run the 100-meter in a time as fast as 10.01, did not sign with an NFL team after going undrafted in April because he wanted to focus on training for the 2012 Olympics at the time. He is now a free agent and has several teams interested, including the Buccaneers, who have been touching base with Demps as far back as the early summer prior to the Olympics.
As Pewter Report mentions, this move makes sense from a public relations standpoint as well as a personnel perspective, appealing to the extremely rabid Florida Gators fanbase.
On the field, though, Demps could certainly bring some playmaking ability on offense and special teams. If the Buccaneers follow through and sign Demps, he'll certainly be one of the more intriguing stories as training camp progresses.
For more on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, be sure to head over to Bucs Nation.
Tiquan Underwood came up with a couple of nice catches in the first preseason game for the Bucs and shows signs of potential.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are on the field Monday morning for another day of training camp. Cornerback Aqib Talib is not on the field with his team on Monday. According to reports, Talib is out with an undisclosed injury that is not believed to be serious.
So apparently Aqib Talib is out today w an injury of some kind. Hear it's not serious.— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) August 6, 2012
Talib enters the season as the Buccaneers' top cornerback. For a time, it looked as though he could be in for some trouble, but a felony assault charge against him in Texas was dropped over the summer. He could still face some repercussions with the NFL.
Tampa Bay opens its preseason schedule on Friday with a game against the Miami Dolphins.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers waived tight end Chase Coffman on Monday morning, reports Adam Caplan. Replacing Coffman's spot on the roster is Andrew DePaola, a long snapper.
— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) August 6, 2012
#Buccaneers announced they waived TE Chase Coffman. Signed LS Andrew DePaola.
Coffman was a third-round pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2009 NFL Draft. He suffered broken foot during his senior year at the University of Missouri and has never been able to recapture the form he had in college that made him one of the top tight ends in the country for a time.
Tampa Bay took a flyer on him in February after the Bengals declined a futures contract for him.
DePaola was a walk on at Rutgers in 2005 who also spent some time at wide receiver and quarterback. Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano has made former Scarlet Knights a priority during the offseason.
For one reason or another, a slew of notable Bucs did not fully participate in training camp on Thursday. Ronde Barber got the day off, the experienced veteran taking a break from the training camp heat. Greg Schiano indicated after practice that Barber is a team leader and veteran who needs to be rested intelligently in preparation for the long haul. Via Roy Cummings of The Tampa Tribune:
"I just want to make sure we're smart with him,'' Bucs coach Greg Schiano said of Barber. "He's knows his body and I rely a lot on his feedback. But as you can see even when he's not practicing he's almost out there on the field anyway. He's still working at it. He's a true pro.''
Another defensive back was limited on Wednesday, only it was not a grizzled veteran like Barber but rather rookie Mark Barron. The Alabama product sat out parts of practice with a toe issue. While Barron's issue is known, the problem bothering Michael Bennett is not exactly clear. Bennett left practice on Wednesday with an apparent heat-related injury. Schiano seemed to think he'll be back in due time and that they what to fully understand what's the problem. Via Rick Brown of The Lakeland Ledger:
"I think Mike is going to be OK," Schiano said. "Not really sure what to call it. He just didn't feel great and we're just going to be safe there. Hopefully we'll get him back in a couple of days.
"I'm not really sure what it is; kinda a combination of stuff," Schiano said. "I don't know if we can categorize it yet. He just didn't feel well."
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were without cornerback Eric Wright for Monday's practice. Head coach Greg Schiano did not disclose the nature of the injury to his starting corner, but shrugged it off as something minor. With the depth in the secondary already an issue in Tampa Bay, Wright's status deserves scrutiny.
According to the practice recap from Bucs Nation, Myron Lewis was working in place of Wright with the first team. He did manage to pick off quarterback Josh Freeman, but dropped the interception thereafter.
Also on the sidelines for Monday's practice was receiver Arrelious Benn, E.J. Biggers, Da'Quan Bowers, Gary Gibson, Donald Penn, and Derrick Robinson. Benn is still dealing with a knee injury. Penn's calf is keeping him out of action.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made deal over the weekend to send defensive tackle Brian Price to the Chicago Bears. Who will replace Price in the middle of the Bucs' defensive line is not yet clear, but it will not be Amobi Okoye.
Okoye fits inside as a 3-technique defensive tackle, a player tasked with shooting gaps between interior offensive linemen and getting to the quarterback. Tampa Bay needs more of a nose tackle type to replace Price, someone to tie up blockers and stuff the run. Right now, a three-way battle between Roy Miller, Gary Gibson and Frank Okam will determine who starts in that spot next to Gerald McCoy.
Bucs Nation, SB Nation's Buccaneers blog, explains the situation:
As for Okoye, what will be his role? To back up Gerald McCoy and to pass-rush on third down. I would expect the pass-rush package to consistent of both McCoy and Okoye at three-technique on opposite ends of the line, something the Bucs didn't do the past three seasons, but something that used to be the standard package for the Bucs when they still had Monte Kiffin as a defensive coordinator.
Losing Brian Price has hurt not just the depth at defensive tackle, but the starting quality: Roy Miller in the starting lineup is not pretty. But for now, the Bucs at least have some competition at that spot.
Although Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano said he hasn't made a decision about who will be the starting running back for the team in 2012, Tom Krasinqi of WDAE in Tampa reports that Doug Martin has a leg up on teammate LeGarrette Blount for the starting position.
Krasinqui, along with many other Tampa Bay beat writers, feels that Martin has been very impressive in camp so far and it appears that the job is his to lose.
Martin has shown his great versatility as he has excelled as a rusher, pass receiver, and pass blocker. Until Blount shows the same skills, or has an injury, he will continue to be behind Martin as the season begins.
Training camp for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers began this week. Sunday, though, will mark the first time the team will practice in full pads under new head coach Greg Schiano. NFL teams are limited to just 14 full-pad workouts during the season under the collective bargaining agreement, but Schiano, who has emphasized toughness, hopes to instill that now. Schiano comes over from Rutgers, where he had served as coach since 2001 and was named Big East Coach of the Year in 2006, revitalizing the program.
And as the Bucs look evaluate certain position battles such as the defensive line and linebacker, full pads should, as Schian reiterated Saturday.
"We play the game with pads on," he told the Tampa Bay Times. "We'll have as many opportunities in pads in preseason as we will the entire season. So this is our time to lay the foundation of what we're going to be."
Tampa Bay wide receiver Mike Williams was carted off the field during Saturday's training camp session. Via Stephen Holder of the Tampa Bay Times:
Mike Williams just carted off with some kind of leg issue here at #Bucs training camp. Might be cramps, might not be— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) July 28, 2012
Williams caught 65 balls during the 2011 season for 771 yards and three touchdowns. The former Syracuse standout has 130 career receptions for 1,735 yards, with 14 receiving touchdowns.
There has been no update yet from the team on his status. Williams is the second Buccaneers wide receiver to go down with an injury already in camp, joining Arrelious Benn, who sprained his MCL on the first day of camp and will be out at least four weeks.
A possible return date for Benn, the third-year wideout from Illinois, is the Bucs' final preaseason game at the Washington Redskins on Aug. 29.
With the signing of free agent wide receiver Vincent Jackson, formerly of the San Diego Chargers, Benn was slotted as the team's No. 3 receiver. From Bucs Nation on the injury news:
That's a blow for the competition at wide receiver, although Benn wasn't expected to play a huge role this season. He should be ready for the regular season, but missing four weeks of training camp and preseason action won't help him get acclimated to the new playbook
Last season, the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Washington D.C. native caught 30 passes for 441 yards and three touchdowns. Benn was a second-round pick of Tampa Bay in 2010.
Greg Schiano is in his first year as head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and apparently he isn't messing around when it comes to the conditioning of his players. Talking to the Tampa Bay Times, Schiano said that several players failed his conditioning test on the opening day of camp on Thursday.
While he declined to name which players were unable to finish his test, Schiano explained that his test features players running 16 110-yard sprints with 45 seconds of rest in between.
"We have a minimum standard," Schiano said. "And if it's not met, then there are consequences."
Later Schiano explained the importance of being in shape at the beginning of camp, rather than getting into shape during camp.
"I think you play your way into football shape once you get to training camp," he said. "But you have to have a base level of cardiovascular conditioning to be able to play your way into football shape."
The Buccaneers also announced on Thursday that they signed WR Landon Cox and CB Marquese Wheaton.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be without their staring left tackle for a few practices. Donald Penn has a "significant" calf strain and has been replaced on the reserve/non-football injury (NFI) list.
#Buccaneers OLT Donald Penn (calf) placed on reserve/NFI list. Supposed to be a significant strain.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) July 26, 2012
Penn has started all 16 games for the last four seasons for the Buccaneers and has established himself as one of the best left tackles in the NFL. Luckily for the Bucs, his injury is just a strain and not a tear, meaning he shouldn't miss significant time. The Bucs list four-year veteran James Lee as his backup at left tackle, and he should fill in with the first team offense as long as Penn is unable to practice.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made three transactions on Thursday afternoon, freeing up some roster space and salary cap room by trading defensive tackle Brian Price to the Chicago Bears and cutting wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe. They also signed linebacker Thomas Williams, a fifth round draft pick back in 2008. The trade was for a late-round pick, with the specific round not yet specified.
Chicago traded a late-round pick to the Buccaneers for DT Brian Price, per sources.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 26, 2012
Price was a second round pick in 2010 who is probably most famous for a personal foul that caused Raheem Morris to bench him for the remainder of a game last season. He has three sacks in his NFL career and should fight for a roster spot in Chicago, where the defensive tackle jobs are not set in stone.
Briscoe had 35 receptions for 387 yards and six touchdowns in 2011, but his 11.1 yards per catch average was far from stellar. With Vincent Jackson coming in, Briscoe was unlikely to play regularly for the Buccaneers.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman arrived at training camp down a good amount of weight. The fourth year quarterback showed up down 20 pounds at the outset of training camp, according to a tweet by Buccaneers writer Jenna Laine.
#Bucs QB Josh Freeman officially starting camp weighing 237. He was 257 before his weight loss. Should be more mobile and agile.— JennaLaineBucs (@JennaLaineBucs) July 26, 2012
Last season, Freeman played in 15 games, and while his yards and completion percentage went up from the last season, his interceptions shot up and he threw nine fewer touchdowns than in 2010. The hope is that with his loss of weight, he can be able to evade problems in the pocket a lot easier than before and possibly be able to move out and run a bit more if the need arises.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2012 Training Camp is Upon us. How do the Bucs shape up for this season?
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