TAMPA – The sudden emergence of Tropical Storm Emily made for another soggy day at One Buc Place on Monday. It didn’t keep the Bucs from putting in a full day’s work on the field, though. Here then is a look at three observations from Day 4 of Bucs training camp.
Quarterback Jameis Winston took the field without a brace on his left knee on Monday, which was almost as surprising as seeing him take the field with one on Saturday. This was, after all, the first day in which the Bucs were in full pads and so the possibility of Winston getting hit on the knee grew substantially. This was also the first time the Bucs have started a workout in the rain and with the field taking a beating and becoming more and more treacherous, you would assume Winston would want the extra protection the brace provides. It’s possible Winston has already decided to bag the whole idea of wearing the brace, but seeing without one on Monday does may you wonder if he really was protecting some kind of minor injury that has since healed. That would be one quick recovery, though.
The first day in pads resulted in more one-on-one blocking work for the Bucs, who ran one such drill in which the linebackers were taking on the tight ends and the running backs. The drill is a good one, because running backs and tight ends have to do a lot of pass protecting against blitzing linebackers, but it also suggests the Bucs linebackers are going to do a lot more blitzing themselves this season. The Bucs have at least two very good downhill linebackers in Kwon Alexander and Lavonte David and with the team expecting to get better coverage in the secondary from cornerbacks Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves they may get a little more aggressive on defense and make greater use of blitzes this year.
Lights, camera, action
The NFL Films and Hard Knocks camera crews are here. At least, that’s what we’ve been told. The truth of the matter is, we probably wouldn’t know they were here if we hadn’t been told in advance they were coming. That’s how seamless their transition into the process has been. Sure, you see a couple more boom mics out at practice now and then but for the most part, the film crews have done a great job of remaining inconspicuous, which is a great thing. There was a lot of concern about how the invasion of the camera crews would affect the Bucs preparation for the start of the season, but so far they seem to be having little or no impact and that goes for what’s going on inside the walls of One Buc Place, too.