“How was practice today, coach?”

“Not good, not good.”

It’s hot. It’s three weeks in. Players are getting dinged up. The hype has come to pass. These players are just workin’ for the weekend.

But those are just excuses, says head coach Dirk Koetter.

Effort is a big deal for the leaders on this team. Last night on Hard Knocks, we saw quarterback Jameis Winston get on one of his players for taking a rep less seriously than he should have. Today we heard Koetter speak of that for his entire team, a message that has been heard a handful of times during training camp.

Koetter knows that there can be all the hype in the world, but how you practice is how you play. The coaches you hate the most in practice are the ones you love the most on game days.

But just because the overall standard wasn’t up to Koetter’s liking didn’t mean there weren’t a handful of great moments are practice.

Give Godwin His Chance

Starting wide receiver Mike Evans left practice early yesterday, and no one seemed to know why. Today he was sidelined, but after practice, he was out signing autographs with fans, so his injury is likely minor and requires nothing bust rest.

Rookie wide receiver Chris Godwin stepped in with the first team as Evans’ replacement. Over the last week or so, Godwin’s highlights have cooled down since a red hot start to camp. But, today he reminded people of why he was the talk of the town to start camp.

Godwin was back to dominating any area of the field on Wednesday, and we really shouldn’t have been surprised. He will likely start opposite DeSean Jackson in place of Evans for the team’s game against the Cleveland Browns thisSaturday. After a quiet preseason, he’ll really get his chance to shine on a game day.

 

Great Day, Brate

Tight end Cameron Brate has been as steady as they come this training camp, and today was no exception.

On a day where the coach wasn’t pleased with the execution or the effort, Brate gave the Bucs offense two of their best plays, one of which you can see above.

 

As the caption of the video above states (sarcastically, of course), it’s just not a surprised anymore that Winston and Brate have such a great connection. Their highlights come almost on a daily basis.

 

Elliott (Re)Emerging

At this point, we really have no idea who is going to start at the nickel cornerback spot, and that is because both Javien Elliott and Robert McClain have performed well and gone back-and-forth with first team chances.

Today it was Elliott’s day to shine. He got an interception on an inside route in the middle of practice, and almost got another one during a one-on-one drill, which is extremely difficult to do.

Whichever of the two starts, they will be even and solid option for this defense.

Click to the next page to read all of our details notes and observations.

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]
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