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CadillacPower24_2006

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: October 03, 2006, 11:03:42 AM

The Bucs are prepared to go to New Orleans with only two quarterbacks on their roster.

Coach Jon Gruden joked he would be the emergency quarterback if something happened to starter Bruce Gradkowski and backup Tim Rattay. But in reality, the Bucs have been preparing several players on their roster in case that scenario plays out.

"We've got some guys, some sleeping giant candidates that we won't announce," Gruden said. "We have used this bye week to get three or four guys some reps so we could evaluate who could do what. If need be, God forbid that happens, but if need be, we would be able to go out and finish the football game."

Some Tampa Bay players with quarterback experience, albeit at the high school level, include P Josh Bidwell, WRs Michael Clayton and Ike Hilliard, LB Ryan Nece, S Jermaine Phillips and FB Jerald Sowell.

Last week, after Chris Simms had emergency surgery to remove a ruptured spleen, the Bucs worked out several veteran quarterbacks, including Shaun King and Tommy Maddox. But instead of wasting a roster spot while Luke McCown continues rehabilitating his injured knee, the team is prepared to go with two quarterbacks until McCown is eligible to return from the physically unable to perform list after Week 6.

Tampa Bay did bring in a quarterback to help with reps at practice. The Bucs on Monday signed former Virginia Tech standout Bryan Randall to the practice squad and released TE Keith Heinrich. Randall spent last season on the Falcons' practice squad.

KELLY READY TO RETURN: CB Brian Kelly is prepared to start Sunday against New Orleans. It will be his first game since the Sept. 10 season opener against Baltimore.

Kelly has missed two consecutive games with a serious turf toe injury and used the bye week for much-needed rest.

"It made a big difference," Kelly said. "It's one of those things where if you keep going out there on it and not let it calm down, it can get worse. The team gave me the ability to do that and I took advantage of it and it helped."

Kelly is prepared to play with pain the remainder of the season, but he won't be able to if the injury doesn't allow him to plant his foot and make cuts, moves very important to his position.

"I hope this time I've taken off will buy me 10-12 weeks," he said. "If I can get that far in, I'm good to go."

TARNISHED IMAGE: Cowboys C Andre Gurode isn't the only one with a black eye. As far as Kelly is concerned, the entire league suffered a black eye when Titans DT Albert Haynesworth stomped on Gurode's face Sunday.

The incident occurred during the third quarter when Haynesworth kicked Gurode once and then stepped on his forehead, causing a cut that required stitches above his forehead and beneath his eye. Gurode left the game because of blurred vision in his swollen eye.

"It's embarrassing," Kelly said. "It's embarrassing for the National Football League. I'm sure [Haynesworth is] embarrassed right now. It's one of those things, we've all been there, when you get caught up in the heat of the moment, you've got to be able to control yourself. Obviously, he didn't have that self-control. I'm sure he's kicking himself right now and is very disappointed about it.

"I know the league is disappointed and I'm sure they'll take the proper recourse and do whatever they've got to do."

The league on Monday suspended Haynesworth for five games.

BUCS BITS: A virus kept G Davin Joseph out of Monday's practice, but Gruden expects the rookie to practice in some capacity on Wednesday. He also won't rule him out of Sunday's game. Joseph missed the first three games with a knee injury. … K Matt Bryant and his wife spent the bye weekend welcoming their first child. Steven Tre was born Friday. … NT Chris Hovan spent the bye weekend getting married. Hovan and wife, Jaimi ,were married Saturday. … Ronde and Tiki Barber donated $1 million between them to their alma mater, the University of Virginia.


psymun

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#1 : October 03, 2006, 11:16:55 AM

Phillips and Clayton were actually both pretty good QBs... I don't know about the others... but Clayton was the #2 QB at his HS... I believe... and guess who the starter was? The one and only Stefan Lefors


OpTiOnMaStA

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#2 : October 03, 2006, 11:32:26 AM

Hopefully we don't need to use anyone other than our starter but it is good to know that we are preparing for this situation nevertheless.

Boid Fink

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#3 : October 03, 2006, 11:36:04 AM

If I see Bidwell, or Clayton come in at QB, I think I will start watching Hockey...


OpTiOnMaStA

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#4 : October 03, 2006, 11:37:31 AM

My money is on Clayton but that's just me.



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#5 : October 03, 2006, 11:50:57 AM

It won't be the same as John Lynch kicking off now would it?

ABN

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#6 : October 03, 2006, 12:02:35 PM

this is a throwaway season. Lets see what G can do and if he is not the second coming of Farve lets draft a franchicse QB for the second time and not trade him like we did Young.

ArmyBucFan

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#7 : October 03, 2006, 12:03:17 PM

I'd love to see Jerald Sowell as our emergency QB!



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#8 : October 03, 2006, 12:56:47 PM

I really wanna see Clayton or Phillips or any of those guys as QB. That'd be awesome.

gone

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#9 : October 03, 2006, 01:11:27 PM

this is a throwaway season. Lets see what G can do and if he is not the second coming of Farve lets draft a franchicse QB for the second time and not trade him like we did Young.
Wait until we lose 2 more before calling it a throwaway.  This D can legitimately shape up, and Grads will probably be an improvement, though not right away.



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#10 : October 03, 2006, 01:51:35 PM

I doubt they would use Bidwell and risk injury.....I would guess the Sowell man would get the nod.
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