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August 2, 2012 @ 1:44 pm
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Bucs News To Know 8-2: Big Red Zone Plays On Offense, Defense

Written by Scott
Scott Reynolds


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In a new Pewter Report training camp feature, Bucs News To Know effectively wraps up day six of camp with the latest on injuries, roster moves, depth chart news and more. Check out this Pewter Report article for all of the news you need to know.
Here is what you need to know about what happened at Buccaneers training camp on Thursday, August 2:

• Bucs safeties Mark Barron and Ronde Barber were at practice but sat out on Thursday to rest up some minor injuries. Barron has a toe injury.

• Defensive end Michael Bennett missed practice with a mystery ailment. Bucs head coach Greg Schiano did not elaborate on Bennett’s condition when asked after practice.

• Defensive end George Johnson hyperextended his hip during 11-on-11 drills in practice and missed a few snaps, but was able to fight through it and continue to practice with a hobble.

• Defensive tackle Amobi Okoye continued to miss practice with a minor knee tweak. Okoye was in full pads and worked out with team trainers, but did not participate in practice. The same could be said of tight end Collin Franklin.

• Offensive tackle Mike Ingersoll also missed practice with an undisclosed injury.

• Left tackle Donald Penn (left calf), wide receiver Arrelious Benn (knee), E.J. Biggers (foot) and defensive end Da’Quan Bowers (Achilles) continue to miss practice. Benn was wearing a brace on his right knee, but was out at practice.
• The Buccaneers signed LB Brian Smith, who spent time with the Cleveland Browns on both their practice squad and active roster last season. He originally entered the league with the Browns as an undrafted free agent from Notre Dame in 2011.

The team released linebacker Nate Triplett in order to make room for Smith.

• In base defense Johnson started in place Bennett at left end. Larry Asante and Ahmad Black started at safety in place of Barber and Barron. Adam Hayward did receive some first-team reps at weakside linebacker during the 7-on-7, although rookie Lavonte David got the most snaps with the starters.

• In nickel defense, Myron Lewis split starting right cornerback reps with Anthony Gaitor while Eric Wright moved inside to play the slot cornerback position.

• Gary Gibson replaced Frank Okam on the second-string as the backup nose tackle behind Roy Miller. Now that Gibson is healthy he appears to be making a move to challenge Roy Miller for the starting nose tackle job.

• In full pads, Tampa Bay worked on red zone passing and red zone passing defense on Thursday. Wide receivers Mike Williams and Vincent Jackson had standout days on offense along with quarterback Josh Freeman, while cornerback Aqib Talib, linebacker Quincy Black had solid days for the defense.

• The Bucs ended practice with a couple of two-minute drills. Freeman led the starting offense down to the 3-yard line, but the offense had to settle for a field goal on fourth down, as the defense was stout inside the red zone.

The second-team offense led by Dan Orlovsky drove down to the red zone, but was stymied as time expired as backup safety Cody Grimm broke up a pass intended for wide receiver Ed Gant.

• Legendary Bucs fullback Mike Alstott, who is the new head coach at Northside Christian High School in St. Petersburg, was at One Buc Place with his team to watch practice.

• Sports Illustrated’s Peter King was in attendance at One Buccaneer Place and got exclusives with general manager Mark Dominik, head coach Greg Schiano and wide receiver Vincent Jackson among others. Look for King’s Bucs coverage on Thursday and Friday on SI.com.

• Cornerback Myron Lewis had an up-and-down day on Thursday. During 7-on-7 drills, Lewis, a third-round pick in 2010 that is trying to shake the “bust” label, leapt up to intercept a Dan Orlovsky pass in the end zone intended for Tiquan Underwood.

“I was in good position,” Lewis said. “I saw the ball and grabbed it at highest point. “Just used my technique that Coach Schiano and [secondary] Coach [Ron] Cooper taught me. Played the defense well. Read the receiver’s hip and once he went up for the ball I looked up and grabbed the ball at its highest point.”

“That’s big time, Myron,” Schiano said. “Big time!”

“Coach Schiano is pretty hard on me,” Lewis said. “He has all the confidence in the world in me. He just wants me to be more confident in myself. He knows I can play and he told me just go out there and be hard on yourself—just focus. He said he loved guys like me you know big corners. So you just go out there and play. Do the right technique and everything follows then.”

Lewis also had a nice pass breakup on Wallace Wright, who dropped three passes on Thursday.

But in 11-on-11 drills later in practice, Lewis lost Jackson in the end zone during red zone pass defense and the receiver was all alone to haul in an easy touchdown strike from Freeman. Lewis was also beaten for a touchdown by Sammie Stroughter in 1-on-1’s to make his practice rather uneven.

• Black continues to make plays in pass defense. On Thursday, Black picked off a tipped pass from Orlovsky, who wound up throwing a pair of interceptions. Black has made several big plays against Tampa Bay’s passing game in camp.

• Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy continues to have an impressive camp. He gets consistent pressure against the run and the pass and looks to be in phenomenal shape. On Thursday during a bull rush, McCoy jolted left guard Carl Nicks so hard with a punch to the chest that he pancaked the 350-pound Pro Bowl guard and was able to sack quarterback Josh Freeman during 11-on-11 drills.

• Bucs rookie running back Doug Martin took a red zone screen pass 20 yards for a touchdown on Thursday. Martin received a great block from reserve tackle Jamarcus Hardrick, who sealed off safety Larry Asante downfield. Martin showed off his speed and vision on the play, while Hardrick showed his hustle in getting downfield to throw a great block.

For more standout plays and more on the first day of Buccaneers training camp, read Pewter Report’s premium Pewter Insider practice reports coming later tonight on PewterReport.com.

Last modified on Thursday, 02 August 2012 14:23

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  • avatar

    buctebow: And while you're still trying to make light of McCoy's ability; perhaps big # 93 used the new move he has developed. He calls it the "Puke and Juke." McCoy drinks a lot of Gatorade, pukes on the ground and the offensive lineman slips on it. Tomorrow he's going to unveil his "Joke and Poke" move. With that one McCoy puts on his Clark Kent glasses and mentions how good he is. When the offensive lineman rolls over with laughter, he puts a poke (bag) over his head on his way to the QB.
  • avatar

    Great Article Scott! I really enjoyed it especially the section as to who is starting and who are the back ups. Go Bucs!
  • avatar

    Gerald McCoy blasting Carl Nicks on his behind? if we got this for 16 games we'd be in the play-offs!
  • avatar

    Last time I checked, Peter King picked the Bucs to win 3 games this year...yet there's Dominik kissing his !@#....if I was a Bucs player...i would have had two words for him.
  • avatar

    Love the feedback on McCoy. If he stays healthy watch out. Go Bucs!
  • avatar

    It's good to see Myron getting an occasional boost of confidence. If that is Ahmad being referenced as coming up with some key pass defenses, that is truly a sigh of relief to hear he's stepping up. Lots of potential in mighty mouse as I've heard him called. - 3sk
  • avatar

    Way to go McCoy! I remember D. Hickey going on about how strong McCoy's hands were in response to a question about his low bench press number. I'd say punching down a 350 lb Pro Bowl guard also answers that question. Just stay healthy this season and you'll be on your way to a fine career.
  • avatar

    You can tip anyone over if they are off balance with bad foot position. I don't think it really proves anything, but I hope he does well...there really isn't a fallback option.
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