As a part of the Bucs’ attempt at turning the tides on a defense that has been ranked in the bottom third of the league four of the past five seasons, they flooded the defensive back’s unit in the 2019 draft. In three consecutive picks Tampa Bay added Sean Murphy-Bunting out of Central Michigan, Jamel Dean out of Auburn and Mike Edwards out of Kentucky.

These athletic playmakers were brought in to shore up a young secondary alongside Vernon Hargreaves, the team’s first-round pick in 2016, and Carlton Davis, the team’s second-round pick in 2018.

Lacking experience, it’s imperative that the unit learns quickly while they’re forced to adapt almost instantly to the speed that comes with the NFL, and Tuesday’s mini-camp was a promising sign.

The takeaways began early on as tight coverage led to a batted ball that Edwards laid out for, turning a pass breakup intended for Damarkus Lodge into an incredible interception off of Jameis Winston. A few minutes later Dean joined in on the action, jumping an out route and falling to the ground as he came up with an interception of his own. Two plays later Dean would jump another route and earn himself a pass breakup along the sideline on a comeback route.

Later on in the period Davis stuck to rookie wide receiver Scotty Miller with great coverage down the sideline and nearly came up with an interception of his own. Kentrell Brice followed suit shortly after, nabbing an easy pick over the middle of the field as Winston sailed a pass over the head of second-year tight end Antony Auclair, his third interception thrown of the day.

The success of the young defensive backs is of course bittersweet for the Bucs’ coaching staff, but it’s always a positive when your young players can find a groove this early. As Dirk Koetter used to say, when the team is playing against each other and when one side is winning, the other side is losing. Winston did have his fair share of impressive throws on the day however, and head coach Bruce Arians seemed less than worried when asked about the turnovers following practice.

 

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21 COMMENTS

  1. Exciting to hear that not only are the defensive backs near the wr’s on their routes, but they’re making the big play as well. Of course it’s not good to see jameis throw int’s, but having a new defensive scheme for him to compete against will hopefully help him hone his skill even more.

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  2. Before the keyboard warriors panic on Jameis, consider:

    1. Jameis and Bruce both take risks.
    2. Training camp is mean to push boundaries.
    3. Jameis has historically pushed boundaries in practice.
    4. There is a new system and new receivers.
    5. Some of these plays and players won’t be on the game day roster.

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  3. I’m glad that these young guys aren’t intimidated and are holding their own against a top 5 passing attack, albeit in practice. They’re lining up, competing and winning. The Saints and Falcons won’t care that they’re rookies, so neither will I. Keep it up!

    Go Bucs!

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  4. While I appreciate the optimism, don’t forget that Javien Elliott consistently intercepted Winston in practices last year and I wanna say the year before, without even being a starting quality DB. You can look at that two ways: 1) Winston throws a lot of int’s in practice no matter who’s covering, or 2) Winston throws a lot of int’s period. Unless these rookie DB’s are already Pro Bowl material, don’t give Winston any slack. He needs to step up his game, his accuracy, his decision making, and everything else that goes into being that “Franchise QB”. I for one am not yet convinced his 2019 will be any better than his other years. Kudos to the new guys but I’m more concerned about Winston’s accuracy issues than their ability to intercept bad throws. Unless JW wants to be Patrick Mahomes’ backup next year he’ll fix this sooner rather than later.

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  5. It’s always hard to judge players without the pads on and full judgement won’t be made on guys like Jamel Dean, Sean Murphy-Bunting and Mike Edwards until the real action gets underway. But it is encouraging to hear how they practiced today and prompted Bruce Arians to say this following the June 1st OTA – “earmarked as a problem in January, that’s totally fixed. Let’s knock on wood and hope they stay healthy”! Go Bucs!

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  6. Edwards is going to ball this year. I can feel it like Tanard Jackson did year 1.

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  7. Have to say I’m glad the new kids on the block are doing well, but the hype is already getting old. This feels a lot like the brew ha over the D line last summer that was all hot air.

    I’d also like to get some objective reporting on Carlton Davis. He was easily our best cover corner last season in a horrible scheme. He also teamed with Dean at Auburn and was their top cover corner there as well.

    By the way, my understanding is there are 90 or so players on the roster. Hey Pewter Report, rather than just spoon feed us the party line hype, how does the rest of the team look??

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  8. As reported earlier today, Malachi Dupre (WR ) Nehari Crawford (WR)Jamarius Way (WR)Josh LeRibeus (OL)Cyrus Kouandjio (OT) were the tryout players in Bucs minicamp today.

    It should be noted that Crawford and Way are UDFAs. The others have NFL experience. The Bucs already have 13 WRs on the roster, but continue to look at WRs. There must be a reason, but no questions from me. Lol. WR Jamarius Way is listed at 6-4, 220 at South Alabama and hails from Belle Glade, FL. WR Nehari Crawford is 5-11 175 at Duquesne and hails from Ft Pierce, FL.

    You would think that the O-Linemen LeRibeus and Kouanddjio have the best chance of being signed. Cyrus Kouandjio is still only 25 and was a second-round pick of the Bills out of Alabama. He has played sparingly in last two years with the Broncos but has good size for a tackle at 6-7, 322. Go Bucs!

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  9. According to PR Carlton Davis looked good out there day 1 of mini camp (eg blanketed Scotty miller on a route), but he had a dropped INT. Davis could potentially be good at some point as he has the skill set. But Davis is going to be edged out of a starting gig if Murphy-Bunting and Dean keep coming up with INT’s in mini camp and pre season. Even VH3 is probably feeling the heat now to come up with INT’s.

    To say the starting defensive unit in 2019 is going to be drastically different than the 2018 unit is probably highly likely now.

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    Rating: +10. From 10 votes.
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  10. B. Perriman is going to be a nice FA addition this season due to his size/speed combo. Even if Godwin is outside you can shift Perriman in the slot and still have mismatches. Arians can move Godwin, Evans and Perriman around to really create mismatches.

    If Scotty Miller keeps performing though you can throw him in with Watson. Arians noted other rookie WR’s showing up too (Johnson). It is going to be an intense battle at WR. Lots of players with size and speed while Miller brings elite speed.

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  11. I really think this team is close to playoff team. I just think they likely need one more year I’m not sold O line is good enough but hope I’m wrong.

    Go Bucs!

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  12. So now jaboo is getting picked off by rookies in practice. You know he has thrown 58 Int in 56 carreer gms. He is just another time the Bucs settled for mediocrity. I expect we will be drafting a QB next year when BA see him cost us gms with his mistakes. Here’s a stat for you. In 56 career gms jaboo has only come from behind to win the gm 5 times out of 56 wow that’s impressive.

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  13. Bucianco I like the way your thinking. Jaboo has never impressed me at all. We as Bucs fans have just settled for mediocrity for far too long.

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  14. @fredster

    I believe the Bucs have enough talent to be a .500 ball club. This has been true for several years now. But I do agree the Bucs can make real progress when they upgrade that right side of the line.

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  15. Thought I heard the coach say that young receivers were not in the right place.

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  16. If a top 3 passing attack is settling for mediocrity, give me mediocrity all up and down the offense AND defense!!!

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  17. Some of you folks need to go to a few Training Camp practices so you can recognize that practice, especially in shorts, is not the same as a game against another team. Typically the offense and the receivers have the advantage in the one on one drills. There are a lot of passes being thrown and the QB’s are dealing with around 20 receivers running a variety of routes, often for the first time, often incorrectly.

    I got a chance to attend yesterday’s Mini Camp session. With 90 players on the field, albeit some on the sidelines, and at times two or more groups doing drills at the same time, it’s difficult to evaluate. I give the Pewter Reporters credit for their observations.

    Most of the receivers are new to the team with little chance of making the squad so I like to ignore the numbers and see who stands out. Scotty Miller and Spencer Schnell look like fast versions of Adam Humphries. Smurfs 2.0. Neither looked overwhelmed or intimidated. Another “newbie” that I noticed was Anthony Johnson. QB(?) Nick Fitzgerald was in on a lot of plays as a receiver and was getting open. RB Bruce Anderson III looked like a good receiver out of the backfield.

    What impressed me about the DB’s was their aggressiveness and lack of fear. Quite a change from the previous style. The QB’s were under far more pressure than I was used to seeing in a “shorts” practice. Defenders (pass rushers) were coming from multiple directions. Not much running room for the RB’s either although there weren’t many running plays. A lot of mixing of the O-line. Both Jensen and Marpet just watched from the sidelines.

    Backup QB appears to be Blaine Gabbert.

    Bob: Vita Vea is not fat and out of shape.

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  18. I’ll get concerned when Bruce Arians gets concerned. Jenna Laine was at practice. So were the Pewter reporters as was faithful season ticket holder scubog! People whose opinion I trust. Relax!

    Jenna Laine
    ESPN Staff Writer
    Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston threw three interceptions (Mike Edwards, Jamel Dean and Kentrell Brice) during Tuesday’s minicamp practice. Is Bruce Arians concerned? “As far as throwing interceptions, I want to see where we’re throwing the ball down the field and learn from it. Do I get upset with interceptions? Always. But not today. We had some new things going in against different coverages, second and third reads, a lot of second and third players that were not necessarily in the right spots. So no, I don’t get upset

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    • Haters are gonna hate. It wont matter if Winston has a Pro Bowl year. These same folks that hate him will find flaws. It’s all good. We have a pattern of running off very good players that move on to other teams to have great success.

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  19. 76BucsFan46 have you ever watched a practice in your entire life? It’s incredibly alarming that you’re seriously worried because of practice INT’s. It’s the same as elite SP’s getting shelled in spring training starts. They’re completely meaningless and are a preview of absolutely NOTHING. I live in Boston, and I’m a frequent daily listener to 98.5 the Sports Hub. And if I had a nickel for every time I heard Brady threw a couple picks in practice, I’d be a rich man. Practice INT’s are about as meaningless as humanly possible. They mean NOTHING. The fact you’re complaining and worried about them really highlights just how sad and unknowledgeable Bucs fans are. Good lord

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  20. Might be the toughest defense Jameis faces all season. With 6 DBs on the field at times we needed at least 3 early in the draft. I myself would take a Int. over a sack anytime.

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