The Buccaneers welcomed back a familiar face on Wednesday in Tiquan Underwood, quarterback Mike Glennon talked about Josh Freeman, and offensive tackle Donald Penn hammered reporters about his perceived handling of the Freeman situation. Get the latest in this edition of the Bucs News To Know.
Here is what you need to know about what happened at One Buc Place on Wednesday October 1:PRACTICE CONDITIONS
While the calendar may say October, the temperatures outside of One Buc Place on Wednesday still screamed August. The Buccaneers were greeted by temps in the upper 80’s when they set foot on the field for their 10:55 a.m. practice. BUCS INJURIES
• The Buccaneers are desperate for tight end production and help may be on the way with Tom Crabtree slowly getting back to being near ready to play his first regular season snap as a Buccaneer. Crabtree was injured in the Bucs final preseason game against the Redskins and has been hobbled with a high ankle sprain ever since.
Head coach Greg Schiano updated the status of Crabtree on Wednesday.
“He’s coming along,” Schiano said. “Slower than we’d all like, but he’s getting better.”
With Nate Byham and Luke Stocker being placed on injured reserve, and Danny Nobles waived last month, the Bucs need Crabtree back as soon as possible. As of Wednesday Crabtree and Tim Wright are the only two tight ends on the active roster. On Wednesday the Bucs announced the signing of TE Matt Veldman to the practice squad. Veldman (6-7, 255) spent last season in Jacksonville and played collegiately at North Dakota State.ROSTER MOVES
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers officially announced Wednesday that they have signed wide receiver Tiquan Underwood.
Underwood (6-1, 183), in his fifth season, played for Tampa Bay last year, posting career highs in games played (14), games started (3), receptions (28), yards (425) and touchdowns (2). Underwood also spent this past offseason with the Buccaneers before being released during the team’s final cuts.
The team also announced the signing of TE Matt Veldman to the practice squad. Veldman (6-7, 255). He will wear No. 87.THE BIG NEWS AT ONE BUC
• Donald Penn was at his locker on Wednesday following practice and wasn’t in a particularly good mood. On Tuesday Penn joined SiriusXM for an interview and made some statements concerning quarterback Josh Freeman’ situation.
“It’s just real tough. I feel bad for Josh being put in this situation,” Penn said. “You know, the stuff that came out yesterday and stuff like that, it’s like they’re really trying to bring him down and Josh is a great guy. Josh is a very humble spirit. He’s a very good guy. He’s a very good person and he really cares about him teammates and cares about his team.”
Penn was asked on Wednesday who the “they” were he was referencing in the SirusXM interview.
"Y’all, the media, the media, the media, the media, y’all,” Penn said.“OK, but y’all are trying to find every way to try to tarnish his character and make him seem like he’s not a good guy, like he’s not a good person and this is all his fault. That’s y’all reporting the stuff. It’s y’all. So don’t try to switch it up like it’s not y’all. It’s y’all. The media is y’all. It’s y’all, the media.”
Penn continued to share his frustration.
“Man, are we going to talk about the Bucs and football?” Penn said. “This Freeman stuff, it’s like – are we going to talk about the Bucs, do you want to know about what we need to do going against Philly or anything about that, because this Freeman stuff is getting old. Like I said, y’all media are trying to bring it down. Y’all are still talking about it. How long has it been? It’s over. Y’all are still talking about it. Ain’t nothing we can do about it now. So why are you guys still talking about it? That’s what I mean about y’all – the media – are trying to bring him down. It’s still an issue. It’s still a big thing. I’m tired of talking about it.”
Although Penn, Schiano and others in the organization would like it to become a non-issue, as long as Freeman is still a Buccaneer, the chances of things dying down are slim to none.
• Tampa Bay welcomed back a familiar face – and hairstyle – as Tiquan Underwood was once again wearing his No. 11 jersey and sporting his hi-top fade in the locker room following practice on Wednesday.
Underwood was one of the final roster cuts back in late August but has been staying in shape, hoping for a phone call.
“As a professional all you can do is stay ready,” Underwood said. “No matter if Tampa was the team, or any other team you just have to stay in shape, stay on top of your game and when you get that opportunity, get off and run with it.”
While he had some discussions with other teams since his release in August, Underwood said coming back to Tampa Bay was the best case scenario for him.
“I think it’s always a good thing for a player to go back to a team that he knows,” Underwood said. “You don’t have to go back to the playbook, you don’t have to go somewhere new and learn. We’re all professionals, so if I went somewhere new, I would have to do what I had to do, and study and learn it. Coming here is a perfect situation. Knowing the offense, knowing the offensive coordinator, the coach, and head coach obviously. I’m going to try to take full advantage of this.”QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Josh has been great. He’s been so supportive. Been nothing but a great teammate to me and I really respect him for that. I can’t say what he’s going through, but I imagine it’s a tough time, I know it would be for me. But he’s been a great teammate, he’s been there for me and his attitude toward me has not changed.” – Mike Glennon on his relationship with Josh Freeman since the benching WHAT’S NEXT FOR TAMPA BAY
The players will now have four days off, with several going back home to get away from football. The coaching staff will take some time off but not four days. Schiano told the media that the staff will get an early jump on prepping for the Eagles who come to town a week from Sunday.
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