In the latest installment of Bucs News To Know, new Tampa Bay wide receiver Jordan Shipley makes his debut at One Buc Place and cornerback Eric Wright got injured. Get the scoop and much more in this Pewter Report article.
Here is what you need to know about what happened at Buccaneers practice on Tuesday, August 21:BUCS INJURIES
• After practicing on Monday after sitting out last week because he wasn’t feeling well, tight end Luke Stocker sat out Tuesday’s practice. Bucs head coach Greg Schiano said that Stocker continues to not feel well and will be continually evaluated by team doctors.
Cornerback Anthony Gaitor (hamstring) didn’t practice with the team, nor did defensive tackle Amobi Okoye (knee).
Cornerback Eric Wright landed awkwardly during practice and seemed to injure his lower back. Wright was writhing around in pain on the sidelines as he was tended to by team trainers.
Quarterback Josh Freeman had some cramping in his hamstring at the end of practice and was pulled in favor of Dan Orlovsky during the middle of Tampa Bay’s second two-minute drill.
Wide receiver Arrelious Benn (knee), cornerback E.J. Biggers (foot) and defensive end Da’Quan Bowers (Achilles) are still sidelined.TAMPA BAY’S ROSTER MOVES
There were no roster moves on Tuesday except for the arrival of wide receiver Jordan Shipley, who was claimed off waivers from Cincinnati on Monday. BUCS DEPTH CHART NEWS
• Shipley started off his first practice in Tampa Bay as a backup slot wide receiver and a punt returner. The former Bengals receiver didn’t show any ill effects of a knee injury that hampered him in Cincinnati. Shipley looked exceptionally quick and showed a nice burst on his punt return opportunities.
• Doug Martin was the starting running back on Tuesday with LeGarrette Blount being held out from team drills due to his mild groin strain. Blount participated in individual drills, but saw Martin start in his place during 11-on-11 sessions.
• Rookie Danny Noble continued to be used in the second tight end spot behind Dallas Clark with Stocker bothered by not feeling well and sitting out. Noble, who had his jersey number switched from eight to 86 last week, has seen his stock rise at One Buccaneer Place in recent weeks as he has climbed the depth chart ahead of Zach Pianalto and Drake Dunsmore, the team’s seventh-round pick.
• With Wright and Gaitor out due to injuries, rookie cornerback Leonard Johnson replaced Wright outside with the starting defense. In nickel defense, newly acquired Brandon McDonald replaced Gaitor as the starting slot cornerback role. It is noteworthy to mention that Myron Lewis was not in the lineup with the starters despite the fact that he is a third-year veteran.THE BIG NEWS AT ONE BUC PLACE
• For the first time since the start of training camp, the Buccaneers didn’t practice in full pads on Monday. Schiano said that it was important for the players to start easing into the regular season routine, which will generally feature non-padded practices.
• After a scream-filled Monday practice with Schiano lambasting the team with some Jon Gruden-style harsh words, Tampa Bay’s head coach was back at it on Tuesday. When all the players didn’t run off the field fast enough for Schiano he blew the whistle and made everyone come back on the field and run off it again.
“Run off the [expletive] field!” Schiano screamed. “I don’t care who you are! Run off the field!”
• Former Kansas Jayhawks head coach Mark Mangino was the guest of Bucs general manager Mark Dominik on Tuesday. Dominik, a KU grad, is friends with Mangino, who was the national head coach of the year in 2007. Mangino got a big hug and a quick sideline chat from cornerback Aqib Talib, who played for him at Kansas from 2005-07. Mangino also shook hands with quarterback Josh Freeman, who was 0-3 at Kansas State against Mangino’s KU team during his three years with the Wildcats.STANDOUT PLAYS IN TAMPA BAY
• Preston Parker continues to struggle fielding punts. After muffing several punts last year, including two at Jacksonville, and muffing another one in the preseason opener at Miami, Parker mishandled another punt during Tuesday’s practice. That drew Schiano’s ire, and he came over and had a few choice words for Parker. What didn’t help Parker’s cause is the fact that Shipley had a strong debut in his first practice with the Bucs, catching every punt cleanly and showing some dazzling moves and better-than-expected speed once he turned up field. Also working in at punt returner on Tuesday was Sammie Stroughter, Tiquan Underwood and Michael Smith.
• In 1-on-1 offensive linemen vs. defensive linemen pass protection-pass rush drills, the starting O-line prevailed as a unit, while the second-team defensive line got the best of the backup O-linemen. The most competitive battle featured right guard Davin Joseph and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy as they generally battled to a draw. McCoy is strong enough to drive Joseph backwards, but can’t finish because of Joseph’s strong hands and wide base. The thing that is concerning about McCoy is that he doesn’t have the quickness to redirect and get to the quarterback. He has a quick first step, but once he’s engaged with an offensive lineman, McCoy can’t quickly disengage and redirect his pass rush.
• The Bucs unveiled an interesting twist to their backup secondary in dime defense. Tampa Bay ran out four safeties flanked by Lewis and Johnson at the cornerback positions. Keith Tandy and Sean Baker were lined up in the slot cornerback positions and Larry Asante and Cody Grimm lined up at the conventional safety spots.
• Orlovsky replaced Freeman in the first of two two-minute drills at the end of Tuesday’s practice. Orlovsky threw a touchdown pass to Mike Williams in the red zone two plays later. But on the second drive with the backups, Orlovsky’s slant pass was intercepted by Lewis to end the practice.
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