If you’re a Buccaneers fan looking for something to get you excited during this relative downtime between the draft and the start of OTAs, all you have to do is surf around the web a little bit. In fact, we’ll help. Here are a few entertaining and/or optimistic links we found on Tuesday while avoiding actual work: Continue reading
Here’s a few things we think we’ve learned over the last few days, as the Buccaneers gathered their own rookies and about 50 tryout players to conduct a quick mini-camp at One Buc Place: Continue reading
It’s the most talked about 24 since Jack Bauer’s eighth (!) sleepless day, and it now belongs to Darrelle Revis.
Mark Barron wore jersey #24 for the Buccaneers as a rookie last year after being selected with the seventh overall pick in the 2012 draft. Four days before the 2013 draft, the Buccaneers traded for Revis, the All-Pro cornerback who happened to have made the #24 pretty famous during his years with the Jets. That kicked off the obvious speculation – you know, after people got tired of talking about Revis’ enormous talent and what it will mean to Tampa Bay’s secondary – that Revis and Barron would strike some sort of deal to transfer ownership of that jersey number with the Buccaneers.
It didn’t have to happen, but it always seemed quite likely to happen…and now it has happened. Leaving the issue of how the transfer was negotiated between teammates, the Bucs confirmed on Friday that Revis will wear #24 and Barron will move to #23. That also necessitated the move of CB Myron Lewis from #23 to #31, the number E.J. Biggers previously wore before departing in free agency.
So jersey #24 will still be prominently featured in the Buccaneers’ secondary this year, just one level closer to the line. Barron, sporting #23, will play beside new safety teammate Dashon Goldson, #38. Returning CB Eric Wright is still sporting #21 and second-round draft pick CB Johnthan Banks has taken over #27, last worn by RB LeGarrette Blount. The Bucs even avoided giving #24 temporarily to a player on a tryout contract this weekend at the Bucs’ rookie mini-camp.
As a celebration of this anticipated switch, which was revealed at 3:00 p.m. ET on Friday, Buccaneer fans can enjoy free-shipping on all merchandise purchased through the online team store for an entire week. Yes, that includes some new #24 Revis and #23 Barron jerseys. The free shipping period began at 3:00 p.m. on Friday and will conclude at 5:00 p.m. ET next Friday, May 10.
Speaking of Banks and the rookie mini-camp, his fellow 2013 draftees put on their first NFL jersey numbers on Friday. The entire roster can be found here but here’s the rookie rundown:
- #8 QB Mike Glennon
- #27 CB Johnthan Banks
- #25 RB Mike James
- #92 DE William Gholston
- #96 DE Steven Means
- #97 DT Akeem Spence
Revis Island may be brand new to the Bay, but it didn’t take the Buccaneers’ long to start exploring its resources.
On Monday, at the press conference to introduce new Buccaneer cornerback Darrelle Revis, Head Coach Greg Schiano hinted at how significant an addition Revis was to his defense. The coaching staff is already tweaking the defensive scheme to account for its new star.
“It certainly has a big effect on any coach when you can have a player that you can match up on another teams’ best receiver,” said Schiano. Continue reading
In 2012, his third NFL season, Bucs DT Gerald McCoy played well enough to be selected to his first Pro Bowl. The league’s all-star game was actually played in 2013, a week before Super Bowl XLVII, but as far as McCoy is concerned it doesn’t belong in this calendar year.
McCoy’s NFL bio will always display that first Pro Bowl honor, and hopefully many more, but it has no bearing on his approach to the upcoming season. If anything, he’s determined not to take any satisfaction from it, lest it convince him that’s already arrived. On Tuesday, after the second day of Tampa Bay’s 2013 offseason workout program, he refused to let a visiting reporter refer to him as a Pro Bowler.
“No I’m not,” he corrected. “It’s 2013. I haven’t done anything. That’s my motivation. I’m not a Pro Bowler; that was last year. This year I haven’t done anything. We’re in Day Two in our workouts and right now I ‘m just a guy.” Continue reading
A story on Buccaneers.com in late March regarding scheduling trends noted a tweet by a Sports Business Journal reporter who believed the NFL’s 2013 schedule would be released on April 16. By the way, that’s tomorrow.
Not going to happen.
On Monday, the league announced on NFL.com that there is, as of yet, no date set for the schedule to drop. Given that it is now April 15 (hope your taxes are in the mail!) and there has been no pre-drop hype from the NFL, this comes as little surprise. The best guess now is that the 2013 schedule will be released next Tuesday, just two days before the draft begins, on April 23. It’s becoming difficult to wait. Continue reading
The vacation is over for the wide swath of grass behind One Buccaneer Place.
The three football fields at Buccaneer headquarters have been quiet for three-plus months, save for a lonely coyote that apparently emigrated from the airport grounds that are relatively nearby and, for a few weeks, made periodical appearances behind One Buc. The coyote is gone now, but the Buccaneers are about to start using those fields themselves for the first time since the 2012 season came to an end.
They’ll start slowly. During Phase One of the strictly-outlined offseason program allowed by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, players may engage only in strength and conditioning activities and physical rehabilitation at team headquarters. Thus, the only coaches they will work with on the field are Head Strength & Conditioning Coach Jay Butler and his staff. Continue reading
Perhaps one of the most unexpected aspects of Davin Joseph’s recent NFL-USO tour was how exhausting the trip was on a daily basis. Long, unglamorous hours of travel were often followed by scheduled rest times, but those were usually preempted by a more important task: interacting with eager U.S. servicemen and women stationed in the Middle East.
Still, in one way, the eight-day USO trip served as a break for Joseph. The Buccaneers’ two-time Pro Bowl guard had been pursuing his rehabilitation from knee surgery with a focused vigilance, so the week abroad allowed him a break from football before the team’s offseason program begins in April. Continue reading
They’re a week away from establishing the Final Four in this year’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, but in the Buccaneers’ locker room it’s already been whittled down to the Final Six.
(Sweet Six? Happy Half-Dozen? Elite Almost-Eight? Whatever.)
March is not the Bucs’ best time for One Buc Place trash talk, actually, as the players are still enjoying some down time before the offseason program begins in earnest. If the tournament fell in, say, November, you can bet it would be the top locker room topic after every practice.
When the 2013 bracket was unveiled on March 17, a total of 18 current Buccaneers (not counting unsigned free agents) had reason to be proud of their former NCAA homes. With at least one representative in each of the four regions, Tampa Bay players had a somewhat slimmed-down version of their own bracket ready to begin on Thursday.
Now? Well, a Final Four with Buccaneer rooting interests in every team is still possible, but just barely. Only six Bucs can still claim a team in the running now that the field has been slimmed down to 16, and two of those six are rooting for the same school. Here’s a rundown of how the 17 tournament teams with Buccaneer locker room ties have fared so far:
Lost in the Play-In Round (Technically, Round One):
- Boise State (RB Doug Martin)…Martin’s tournament fun was over almost before it started, as his team lost the West Region 13-seed play-in game to LaSalle, which has gone on to challenge Florida Gulf Coast University for the title of this tournament’s darling.
Lost in Round Two (Thursday/Friday):
- Pittsburgh (TE Nate Byham)…Went down meekly, 73-55, to one of the team’s early Cinderallas, Wichita State.
- Wisconsin (LB Jonathan Casillas)…Victim of a bracket-busting upset for some pool players, as the fifth-seeded Badgers lost to 12-seed Ole Miss.
- Kansas State (QB Josh Freeman)…Another victim of upstart LaSalle, meaning the core of the Buccaneers’ offense isn’t too fond of the Explorers right now.
- Oklahoma (G Davin Joseph, DT Gerald McCoy)…Lost the 7-10 game in the South Region to San Diego State, 70-55.
- North Carolina State (C Ted Larsen)…Missed the chance to take on #1 seed Indiana by losing a close one to Temple.
Lost in Round Three (Saturday/Sunday):
- Iowa State (CB Leonard Johnson)…Johnson, who beat the odds to make an NFL roster as an undrafted free agent last summer, nearly saw his team overcome underdog status and make the Sweet 16. The Cyclones upset 7-seed Notre Dame in their opener but lost to Ohio State on a last-second three-pointer Sunday.
- North Carolina (K Connor Barth)…Lost a matchup of traditional powerhouses on Sunday, giving up a 30-21 halftime lead in a 70-58 decision against #1 seed Kansas.
- Minnesota (QB Adam Weber)…In one of only two matchups so far between Buccaneer teammates, the Gophers fell to Florida, 78-64, as the Gators advanced to the Sweet 16.
- California (DE Ernest Owusu)…The Golden Bears lost in what was the other matchup pitting Buc teammates against each other, falling to Syracuse, 66-60, on Saturday night.
On to the Sweet 16!:
- Oregon (RB LeGarrette Blount)…The Ducks took down fifth-seeded Oklahoma State and fourth-seeded St. Louis en route to a Sweet 16 matchup with #1 seed Louisville this coming Friday. Blount is the lone remaining Buc in the Midwest Region.
- Arizona (WR David Douglas)…The Wildcats have drawn #11 seed Belmont and #15 seed Harvard so far and have handled both easily. Next up for Douglas’ team is #2 seed Ohio State on Thursday. Douglas is the last Buc alive in the West Region.
- Michigan (CB James Rogers)…The Wolverines have won their two games, over #13 seed South Dakota State and #4 seed Virginia Commonwealth, by an average of 20 points. It’s likely a tougher task ahead for Rogers’ team as they play #1 seed Kansas on Friday.
- Florida (S Ahmad Black, P Chas Henry)…The Gators have a very interesting matchup on Friday against the first #15 seed ever to make the Sweet 16, Florida Gulf Coast. UF has so far dispatched of Northwestern State and Minnesota. The two former Gators and Michigan’s Rogers could meet in the Elite Eight later in the weekend.
- Syracuse (WR Mike Williams)…’Cuse gets a crack at #1 Indy in the East Region on Thursday after dismantling Montana, 81-34 and getting past Owusu’s Cal crew, 66-60.
Many Buccaneer players will be back to work at team headquarters by the beginning of April, which means the potential for tournament trash-talking still exists if the Final Four falls right. The nuclear scenario: A Final Four of Oregon in the Midwest, Arizona in the West, Florida in the South (since there are two former Gators on the roster) and Syracuse in the East.
Chances are, there aren’t too many brackets with an Oregon-Arizona-Florida-Syracuse Final Four. But you never know!
Throughout his career, Buccaneers legend Derrick Brooks took down quarterbacks, blockers, running backs and anyone else holding a football. And while he may be done taking over NFL games, he has two more takeovers in his sights.
Along with current Buccaneer star running back Doug Martin, Brooks is one of 64 former and current players vying for the honor of landing the Madden NFL 25 cover. While Martin lines up on the “New School” side, Derrick Brooks looks to tackle his competition in the “Old School” column and takeover the title of newest Madden cover star.
On Monday, March 18, from 12-1 PM EST, he will be taking over another platform, the Buccaneers Twitter handle, @TBBuccaneers, in the Derrick Brooks Twitter Takeover.
This event is a special chance for you to chat with the Bucs all-time tackle leader. He will field your questions throughout the hour-long session while giving away some special autographed memorabilia to some of the best Tweets that come his way. In the timeframe, tweet at @TBBuccaneers and be sure to add the hashtag #itsabucslife for your comment to be seen.
To cast your vote for the Buccaneers New and Old School candidates, make sure to visit and share http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/feature/madden25cover.
And remember to tune in on Monday, March 18 from 12-1 PM for the Twitter Takeover.