The high from the big opening day win has started to subside and all eyes have turned to the Eagles, who are the defending Super Bowl champs. Thursday was the first opportunity to the media had to speak to offensive coordinator Todd Monken however, and a majority of the focus of the questions were on the offense’s success against New Orleans and the 48 points scored.
Monken was quick to give Dirk Koetter much of the credit for the success, saying it was a collective effort from the entire staff. Monken also said he was pretty numb following the game, while also praising quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick calm leadership and demeanor.
Next up to the podium was Fitzpatrick, who’s 14 years of experience oozed from the Harvard product. Cool and relaxed, Fitzpatrick answered each question fired by the media calmly and to the point. He did receive a nice laugh from the media when saying the big celebration when he got home on Sunday evening was some chcolate milk with his kids.
Fitzpatrick was asked about the Eagles and what stood out to him when watching film this week of Philadelphia.
It was a fairly quiet open locker room period, but tight end Cam Brate was awarded the Good Guy award from the local media who each year vote on a player who is accessible to the media, offering up good insight.
Following open locker room the team took the field to practice and Vita Vea once again was a no go. Joining Vea not practicing was cornerback Brent Grimes. Good news for the Bucs, wide receiver DeSean Jackson and defensive lineman Jason Pierre-Paul returned on Thursday which means there is a chance they can play against the Eagles.
As usual, Koetter had no comment on injuries following practice when he went to the podium to address the media.
The Eagles will be a tough test on Sunday for the Bucs and one of the team’s best players is tight end Zach Ertz. Koetter spoke about the issues he gives opposing defenses.
And finally it was announced on late Thursday afternoon another accolade for Fitzpatrick after his performance against the Saints as he earned the FedEx Air Player of the Week after his 417 yard, five TD game on Sunday.