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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs' linemen have to hustle in hurry-up offense

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 20, 2013 at 11:55 PM
TAMPA -

Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Raheem Morris has become more like a fitness instructor to his offensive lineman.

Whenever Morris decides the team needs to go into its hurry-up offense, Tampa Bay's five linemen undergo a version of boot camp. They must run to the line of scrimmage, get set, block, sprint downfield and do it again – while carrying around about 300 pounds each.

Tampa Bay's offensive line is hoping to avoid another Morris exercise class against Atlanta on Sunday.

"It's not something we like to do, but it's something we have to do," left tackle Donald Penn said. "Looking at that game (last) Sunday (against Minnesota), you could tell which team was in better shape toward the end. We had those guys on their heels. The whole D-line was gassed. We kept going.

"We did it a lot last year. We did a lot this year. I think it's a great tool to be able to hop in there and still be successful. I prefer not to be in it if we don't have to. When we are in it, as long as we are moving that ball and making it work, I'm all with it."

Despite going to a hurry-up offense in the second half of two games, quarterback Josh Freeman has been sacked only once in 47 pass attempts. Tampa Bay has outscored opponents 31-10 in the second half.

"It can be tiring," right tackle Jeremy Trueblood said. "I'm not saying it's not tiring. You find yourself sometimes breathing a little heavier than you should be.

"Raheem says it all the time – be good in every situation. It's just something we all have worked at. We work at everything, but we're trying to be good all around players."

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