Defensive end Da’Quan Bowers said he probably wouldn’t play in the Bucs game against the Chiefs on Friday, but head coach Raheem Morris was not ready to say that on Wednesday.
“He’s coming really well. He’s really come on since we put the pads on,” said Morris. “We knew that is going to be his game anyway. He’s a giant end. He’s huge. He played like that at Clemson. You can see his power rush is kind of his game, and he did show some speed and flashes of quickness. That’s what we are starting to see more and more with the pads coming on. We’ve been kind of talking about that plan that we were talking about right from the beginning on draft day. Let's draft him. Let's be cautious with him.
“Maybe we’ve been even more cautious than we have to be but that’s from the lack of time with him. I think it is smart by our training staff and coaching staff not to put too much on his plate right away. This young man, I know that you call him a one-contract guy, I’m going to make sure he gets to that because we are all one-contract coaches. I’ve said that before, too. I really like where he’s coming, where he’s going. We’ll see about putting him on the regular vet type of deal 12 to 15 kind of a number. Maybe we’ll put him out there and try to look at it from that standpoint.”
Bowers had knee surgery after the 2010 season and was limited throughout the spring as he rehabbed the knee. Outside of Bowers, Morris has a couple of other defensive tackles that have been held out of some training camp practices. Defensive tackles Gerald McCoy (rotator cuff) and Brian Price (hip/hamstring) are expected to have big improvements in 2011, and Morris wants to get them some playing in the preseason. While Morris said he wanted to get his linemen some preseason playing time, he was coy about their status for Friday.
“They are out there with their first groups and they’ll play those reps or whatever everybody else plays,” said Morris. “I’m not really interested in playing McCoy any more than I am interested in playing Quincy [Black] per say. I’m not interested in playing Price any more than whoever else is out there with him, Frank Okam. I want to give those guys those reps they need in order to get ready for the season. Obviously right now if are fortunate to get Price to go, he’ll be a lot less just getting him back to where he needs to be in order to be successful throughout (the season).”