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August 15, 2011 @ 8:53 pm
Current rating: 3.00 Stars/2 Votes

Banged Up On The Corners, Bucs Add Depth With Youboty

Written by Eric
Eric Horchy


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The Buccaneers' newest addition, free-agent CB Ashton Youboty, was laced up and on the practice fields Monday afternoon.

With the Buccaneers’ starting and second-team cornerbacks still unavailable to practice Monday, Tampa Bay signed free agent and former Buffalo Bill, Ashton Youboty.

Listed starting left corner Aqib Talib (hamstring) and backup Myron Lewis (hamstring) remained sidelined and questionable for Thursday night’s home-opening preseason matchup against New England. Also out of commission in the secondary is rookie free safety Ahmad Black, who began sporting a walking boot on his right foot yesterday because of a high ankle sprain.

Both the team and defensive backs coach Jimmy Lake got a first look at Youboty on Monday. When asked if the transaction was in response to the injuries currently affecting Talib and Lewis, Lake said that was not exactly the case.

“We’re always going to be collecting corners and that’s what we’re going to do as an organization,” he said. “You can’t have enough corners. So the more able bodies that are big and fast and can run; we’re going to bring them in here by the dozen.”

Youboty, 5-foot-11, 189-pounds, is no unfamiliar face to the Bucs’ fourth-year coach, either. “I’m very familiar with him. I [evaluated] him when he was coming out of college in 2006. I liked him coming out of Ohio State and I watched him from afar through his pro career. When a talented guy like that is on the street with no job and we’ve got an opportunity to pick him up, we’re going to pick him up.”

Youboty made seven starts during his five-year stint in Buffalo and appeared in 13 games last season. He totaled 52 tackles, seven passes defensed, one interception and two sacks over that time.

As it currently stands, and if Talib and Lewis are both no-goes, second-team corner E.J. Biggers appears to be the likely option to fill in as a starter. The Bucs also have rookie Anthony Gaitor, Elbert Mack, D.J. Johnson and Vince Anderson lower on the depth chart.

The Bucs’ newest late-camp addition also spoke with reporters following Monday’s fully padded practice and said he is pleased to have a chance to prove himself in Tampa.

“It’s a good fit any time you get an opportunity in the league,” Youboty said. “It’s huge; we’ve got 2,000 players in the league … So vets like me, we’re just looking for an opportunity to get a chance to prove ourselves.”

Neither Lake nor Youboty could confirm if the new corner will be suited up and active for Thursday’s home game, but that’s the immediate goal for both.

“[His first practice] went well, but he’s got a lot of catching up to do,” Lake said. “We had some extra meeting time today, we’ll have some extra meeting time tomorrow; as much as it takes to get him ready for the game. But for today being his first day, he played well.”

Working in the 27-year-old’s favor, he said, is his general familiarity with Tampa Bay’s defensive sets. “Overall I have a concept of the scheme. I ran it for my first four years in Buffalo.”

Youboty said it’ll be a quick transition from getting into One Buccaneer Place on Monday and then onto the field to contribute by Thursday, but that’s the expectation.

“The sooner the better,” he said. “I’ve already got a grasp of the base concept – pick up the nickel as time goes by and see what happens.”

Lake said it was too early to give a firm answer on Youboty’s availability Thursday or his playing-potential at the nickel cornerback position.

“That’s what we’ll see out here in practice,” Lake said. “We’ve got to see if he’s going to make the plays, we’ve got to see if he’s going to pick up the technique and all of our schemes. All that takes care of itself out here on the grass.”

Last modified on Monday, 15 August 2011 21:29

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  • avatar

    i guess it adds dept but what who would of thought that we would be picking up nobodies... (sarcasm) we should of got joseph from the bengals...
  • avatar

    Good pick up as he is a vet...as a replacement for Talib...not a chance... i know a lot of haters might think we would be better off with out Talib but that would be a huge problem at corner just like last year when he went out...teams did not fear throwing on us...lets hope he doesn't get suspended and the rest of the D stays healthy because its going to be a great year in my opinion!!
  • avatar

    Well it is a good win win sistutation. To bring this veteran in just in case tampa looses Talib. He is also an insurance personnel added to the staff. Plus he will be around in 2012. I say great. I also understand Tampa picked up a couple more WR! who are they! GO BUCS
  • avatar

    I am surprised that Talib has hamstring problems because I thought they were part of the rehab that was on going during off season? I agree with others that Price will go on PUP and we'll see him later on this season. Black might have problems making this team if he can't play now. He already has a size issue to overcome and not getting reps is hurting him.
  • avatar

    There were some that called for signing a Veteran Free Agent when Talib first got in trouble. You have now gotten your wish. Given the fact that both Talib and Lewis are both banged up right now, I think this is a good move, and I hope that Youboty's experience with the Bills and the potential he displayed coming out of Ohio State will pay off with the fine coaching of Raheem and his staff. I also have been impressed with what Gaitor has contributed so far, and I have to admitt, I was not as enamored with him at first, because there was similar production at the small college level by another of our short corner backs who has not exactly set the world on fire as a Buc and cost us the Lions game last year and a shot at the playoffs, not to mention any names. I am very hopeful Gaitor will be very productive for us at the Pro level too. New England will be tough, but the Bucs can take them.
  • avatar

    Not a bad addition. He has experience and could be a good player in this system. Hopefully the hamstring injuries won't linger for Talib and Lewis. I was looking forward to hearing good things about Lewis in this training camp but he seems to be flying under the radar. At least the injuries will give Biggers and Gaitor more playing time.
  • avatar

    This guy could be much more that "camp fodder". In line with the earlier comments, some draft guru's saw him as a first round stretch or more likely at the top of the second round. He obviously isn't close to a top tier man on man guy, but in our defense could be at least adequate in the future after being "coached up" with Raheem pressing the buttons, if he has the right attitude. Very good pickup.
  • avatar

    Get ready for the one-liners, so I''ll be first. The Bucs got Youboty because they are covering their booty! lol.
  • avatar

    You are correct freeballin34. Youboty at times at Ohio State he played like a potential first rounder. That inconsistency dropped him to the third round. Who knows, maybe the Bucs coaching staff can salvage his career.
  • avatar

    Not 100 percent, but I think Youboty was in the first round of some mock drafts that year. Intriguing pick-up.
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