TBO.com, The Tampa Tribune and The Tampa Times - breaking news and weather
Thursday, Jul 31, 2014

Bucs Report

A Pro Football Blog by Roy Cummings and Ira Kaufman

Go behind the scenes with Buccaneers beat writers Roy Cummings and Ira Kaufman as they offer their insights on the latest happenings with the team.

Logjam at tight end? Bucs’ Smith says it’s not a problem

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— The Tampa Bay Buccaneers devoted a lot of resources to their tight end position during the offseason, adding veteran free agent Brandon Myers and second-round draft pick Austin Seferian-Jenkins to a group that already included veteran Luke Stocker and 2013 standout starter Tim Wright.

Those moves have left the Bucs with a bit of a logjam at that spot. But Bucs coach Lovie Smith says he plans to dress three tight ends for every game this year and that he should have no trouble finding work for all three, perhaps even on the same plays.

“I definitely think so,’’ Smith said this week when asked if the use of three tight-end sets is a growing trend in the league. “You look at the fullback position and you’re kind of limited with what you can do with a traditional fullback (because) normally they’re not great special teams players.

Click to continue reading this post

CB Williams’ induction to hit home for Bucs’ Byrd

Published:
By Ira Kaufman

— When Aeneas Williams steps to the podium Saturday night for his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction speech, Bucs assistant coach Gill Byrd will have a difficult time hiding his emotions.

Byrd, who coaches Tampa Bay cornerbacks, served as a mentor to Williams in the early ‘90s. Byrd was finishing up a stellar career with the Chargers and Williams was just learning how to be a pro with the Cardinals when they crossed paths.

“I always wanted to serve younger players and Aeneas asked me after a game, ‘Can I call you and come to work out with you in the summer?’ Byrd said. “That was very unusual. There were guys I played with for five or six years that never asked me that.’’

Click to continue reading this post

Despite weather threat, Bucs like afternoon workouts

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith raised both eyebrows and concern when he announced he would hold the majority of his team’s training camp workouts in the mid- or late afternoon this year.

Those concerns were immediately justified when the threat of lightning and thunderstorms in the area forced the Bucs to twice leave the field and eventually cancel their first workout on Friday.

Bucs players share those concerns, but beyond that they generally seem to like the idea of the afternoon workouts.

Click to continue reading this post

Revis reports to Patriots in ‘best shape of career’

Published:   |   Updated: July 25, 2014 at 03:58 PM
By Ira Kaufman

— Patriots cornerback Darrelle Revis, whose one season in Tampa was hindered by his recovery from knee surgery, declared himself in the best shape of his career on Friday.

The Bucs traded a first-round draft choice to the Jets for Revis in April, 2013 and he made the Pro Bowl as the NFL’s highest-paid defensive player ($16 million) last year.

“Coming off the ACL injury was tough for me,’’ Revis told reporters in New England. “I finished all 16 games last year, but I still wasn’t where I wanted to be physically as a player. So this is my first offseason where I can really focus on, not rehabbing, but just working out.’’

Click to continue reading this post

Nicks situation could provide reps for others

Published:
By Roy Cummings

Two-time Pro Bowl left guard Carl Nicks didn’t report for the starting of training camp along with the rest of his Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammates on Thursday and he may not be with them when workouts begin today.

Bucs coach Lovie Smith doesn’t seem too concerned.

Smith noted that Nicks’ absence, due to personal reasons he did not elaborate on, allows the Bucs to take a longer look at some of the other players they have at the guard spot seemingly reserved for Nicks.

Click to continue reading this post

Veteran Moore squeezed out of Bucs’ CB competition

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— The decision by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Tuesday to release veteran cornerback D.J. Moore came as a bit of a surprise, and not just to Moore.

There was a sense around One Buc Place at the end of the team’s offseason workout program last month that Moore might have taken the lead in the battle for the third or nickel cornerback spot.

He was getting a lot of reps with the first-team defense there, and his four previous years of experience in Coach Lovie Smith’s defense, all seemed to be working in his favor.

Click to continue reading this post

Why practice in late afternoon? Bucs’ Smith has reasons

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will open the 2014 season with two home games, one against Carolina that has a 4:25 p.m. kickoff and a second against St. Louis that has a 4:05 p.m. kickoff.

The starting times of those games is one reason why Bucs coach Lovie Smith has decided to tempt Mother Nature by starting most of his training camp workouts at 4:30 p.m. The fans are the other reason.

“I know that most people work all day, and that’s the time where if you’d like you can come over and still be able to catch some of our practice after you go to work.’’ Smith said. “We want to be fan-friendly with it.”

Click to continue reading this post

Pats owner Kraft mourns death of Malcolm Glazer

Published:
By Ira Kaufman

— The passing of Buccaneers owner Malcolm Glazer hit Robert Kraft particularly hard.

The owner of the Patriots had grown close to Malcolm and other members of the Glazer family since 1995, when the Bucs were sold for a then-record $192 million, five months after the death of Hugh Culverhouse.

“Malcolm was a very special man,’’ said Kraft, who boasts three Super Bowl rings since purchasing the Patriots in 1994. “We had dinner with he and (wife) Linda many times. He was someone who was a great fixer. He could go into any sick situation and it turned around.’’

Click to continue reading this post

Ex-Bucs TE Becht holding football camp

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— Aspiring Tampa Bay area football players will have a chance to learn the game first hand this summer from some of the greatest players in Tampa Bay Buccaneers history.

The occasion is the Anthony Becht Football Camp, which will be held June 16-18 at Land O’ Lakes High School.

Becht, a former tight end with the Bucs, has secured an all-star cast of instructors that includes former Bucs fullback Mike Alstott, 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Derrick Brooks and former coach Jon Gruden.

Click to continue reading this post

Experience gives D.J. Moore an edge at nickel corner

Published:
By Roy Cummings

— Cornerback D.J. Moore’s career has been in a bit of a tailspin the last couple years.

A fourth-round pick of the Bears out of Vanderbilt in 2009, Moore served as then-Chicago coach Lovie Smith’s nickel corner for two years. Like Smith, though, he was let go following the 2012 season.

Moore’s 2013 season ended in similar fashion, though much sooner for the Lakeland native. After signing as a free agent with the Carolina Panthers in March, he was let go in October after playing in two games.

Click to continue reading this post