The news of Buccaneers RG Davin Joseph's election to the 2012 NFC Pro Bowl squad didn't come as much of a surprise to QB Josh Freeman. Based on all the chatter he hears from players across the line of scrimmage, Freeman said Wednesday had a feeling Joseph would make the squad again this year.
"You hear guys all the time talking about, 'You got to keep an eye on that No. 75, watch out for him, tell him to cut out the cheap shots,' which are not cheap shots, they're just hustle plays,'' Freeman said.
Joseph, the Bucs first-round draft choice in 2006, was named to the Pro Bowl squad for the second time in his career Tuesday. He was first named to the squad in 2008, and he said this one is special because it came during a difficult season in which voters decisions were not influenced by the Bucs record.
"I thought we were playing well up front, but wins and everything else goes into account,'' Joseph said. "So I'm really proud to get a chance to play in another Pro Bowl. It's been quite an adventure for us this year, but it's nice to get something positive out of it.''
Joseph signed to a seven-year, $53 million contract in August that included $19 million in guaranteed payouts. He's clearly played up to the terms of the deal so far.
"Yeah, but I'd give it all back for some wins,'' Joseph said. "If you gave me 10 wins I'd trade it all in. But that just shows you that we have talent here and that we put in a lot of work and things just aren't panning out for us. But soon it will.''
Bucs rookie DE Da'Quan Bowers says he won't soon forget the nine-game losing streak the Bucs are riding. He says, in fact, that he doesn't want to forget it because he plans to use it as motivation in the future.
"It's left a bad taste in our mouths and a lot of the veterans around here were saying (after last week's loss at Carolina) to just remember this feeling, and that really stuck with me,'' Bowers said.
"They said to remember the feeling of being on (this kind of) losing steak, to remember the feeling of being blown out and of your own fans turning against you. You never want to experience that again so we'll do everything in our power to change it.''
The Bucs already battered defensive front took another hit Wednesday when DE Adrian Clayborn was forced to sit out portions of practice because of a hamstring strain.
Clayborn has started every game for the Bucs this year and leads the team in sacks with 7.5, but he stands to miss this week's season finale along with several other defensive linemen.
DTs Albert Haynesworth (knee), Brian Price (ankle) and Roy Miller (back) and fellow DE Michael Bennett (toe) did not practice at all Wednesday and could miss Sunday's game, Bucs coach Raheem Morris said.
Also missing practice Wednesday were WR Arrelious Benn (neck), WR Preston Parker (concussion) and RT Jeremy Trueblood (concussion). LB Adam Hayward was limited by a sore foot.