By Evan Winkofsky
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers took the practice field Tuesday at One Buccaneer Place in front of nearly 50 former players. The special event was the first ever "Legends Day" and was thought of as a way to bridge the generational gap with the current players.
Defensive end Stylez G. White, wide receiver Kevin House, tight end Dave Moore, guard Ian Beckles and kicker Martin Gramatica were all in attendance.
Gramatica, the Buccaneers all-time scoring leader with 592 points, referred to the night as an opportunity to get together and reminisce.
"Eventually these guys will be where we are at. Every chance I get I tell them to enjoy it and appreciate it because it goes by so fast," he said.
Fourth year defensive end Adrian Clayborn appreciated the chance to connect with some of the former players. “It’s good to get to know those guys and learn more about the defense and get tips with them also,” he said.
On the field Tuesday there was an audible difference in intensity. From the coaches barking out orders to the sound of the pads smacking together as the offensive and defensive lines met.
Veteran offensive tackle Demar Dotson wanted to get the bad taste out of his mouth after the game in Jacksonville. “It starts at practice. Coming out here being more focused and we came with a more physical edge this week,” he said.
Position drills were sharp and fast. The quarterbacks and wide receivers made it through initial position drills without one dropped pass.
Rookie guard Kadeem Edwards took reps with the first team at guard as the rotation on the line continues in practice but there is no timetable for a decision on a starter. "That time is when we feel we are ready to do that. Be patient we are going to look at some different combinations," said Head Coach Lovie Smith.
The Buccaneers players have a day off Wednesday before returning to the practice field on Thursday.
Quote of the Day: Head Coach Lovie Smith on an interception in the end zone "No I'm an offensive guy. Remember my draft all offense..." chuckles from all in attendance.
Catch of the Day: Rookie Robert Herron dove across the middle of the field and grabbed a throw from Josh McCown right out of the air between two defenders. The catch was celebrated by all the fans in attendance including McCown who ran 20 yards down field to congratulate him. Honorable mention goes to wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins who used one hand to pull in a Mike Glennon pass in the back of the end zone.
Hit of the Day: The entire roster. Practice tempo was dialed up and in no way was it more evident than in the sound. Players were not being tackled to the ground but that didn't stop both the offensive and defensive players from delivering some blows.
During Monday's practice Josh McCown put in extra time with the tight ends. On Tuesday, the 12 year quarterback vet, spent period 2 with the wide receivers.
While the special teams took over the main field, running back Doug Martin worked with position coaches catching the football and spinning up field with a defender on his back.
Offensive Coordinator Jeff Tedford continued to install more of the play book. During the sixth period of practice the offense split away from the defense and walked through a multitude of red zone plays. Coach Tedford stood behind the quarterback, wore a headset and called plays off his clipboard.
Major Message: Veteran safety Major Wright lowered his shoulder and put a hit on Rookie running back Charles Sims.
Third year corner back Anthony Gaitor intercepted Mike Glennon to end the day.
Injury Update: From Coach Lovie Smith "Charles Sims hurt his ankle and the rest was heat related cramping." Gerald McCoy was held out of practice because of a coaches decision. Nothing to be concerned over it was strictly a day of rest.