Monday, October 15, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs rookie CB Carlton Davis pleased with hometown debut

Carlton Davis is from Miami and went to Norland High, less than two miles from Hard Rock Stadium, where the rookie cornerback made his preseason debut for the Bucs in Thursday's win against the Dolphins.

"It actually made me focus a little bit more, wanting to give a good show to my family and my hometown," said Davis, a second-round pick from Auburn.

Davis had five tackles, tied for second-most on the team, and two passes defensed, tied for the team lead, playing even more than expected. The Bucs knew they would be without veteran corner Brent Grimes, but lost another primary corner in the first quarter when Vernon Hargreaves left with a groin injury.

"It was great," Davis said of the throws in his direction. "I anticipated they would kind of go at me, because I'm a rookie, but I think I handled it well. I've got some things to improve on, but it was a good first game."

Hargreaves said the groin injury wasn't serious ("I feel good. I feel fine. Just precautionary") and he had time to watch Davis and fellow second-round pick M.J. Stewart, who had three tackles in his debut.

"They played great. They played fast and physical," he said. "It's their first one, so I'm not really doing too much note-taking or judging. It's their first one. But they played well. They played the way we're supposed to play."

Bucs coach Dirk Koetter shared the sentiment, saying Thursday night was the first live test for all three rookie defensive backs, including safety Jordan Whitehead.

"Very pleased," Koetter said. "Those two (corners) both compete hard. This was really the first look we've gotten. Just haven't seen much of Whitehead. I thought he did a good job. I thought all three of those rookie DBs showed up. I'm really proud of how they competed."

Comments
Why the Bucs waited to fire Mike Smith

Why the Bucs waited to fire Mike Smith

TAMPA — Exactly two weeks ago, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter stood at the same podium following the Bucs’ embarrassing 48-10 loss at Chicago and asked this rhetorical question: “We fire Mike Smith. Okay, then what would the next move be?&...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Buccaneers AfterMath: The kicker problem and how to solve it

Buccaneers AfterMath: The kicker problem and how to solve it

On “Separation Sunday” in the NFL, it was gut-check time for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They didn’t pass, dropping their third straight game.In a 34-29 loss to the Falcons in Atlanta, the defense struggled to get off the field on thi...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Mike Smith’s firing means the Bucs got tired of wasting a decent offense

Mike Smith’s firing means the Bucs got tired of wasting a decent offense

TAMPA— Wow, who saw that coming?Let's be as clear: Former Bucs defensive coordinator Mike Smith, wished into the cornfield Monday, won't be the last person to carry a box out of the team's headquarters this season.Sunday's 34-29 loss in Atlanta...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs fire defensive coordinator Mike Smith

Bucs fire defensive coordinator Mike Smith

The Bucs have fired defensive coordinator Mike Smith.Smith's defense was last in 2017 and are allowing 34.6 points per game this season, the most in the league and are on pace to allow the most points in NFL history.Two weeks ago, the Bucs were embar...
Updated: 2 hours ago
The Bucs are suddenly 2-3, and you can see doom from here

The Bucs are suddenly 2-3, and you can see doom from here

TAMPA — So this is what the downward looks like. This is how the rest of the Bucs season will look, right on down to Dirk, let us help you with the big boxes.The Bucs are trapped like rats.So are their fans.The rest of the way will often go a l...
Updated: 5 hours ago
If DeSean Jackson scored on the final play, would it have counted?

If DeSean Jackson scored on the final play, would it have counted?

ATLANTA —It was a scintillating play, one that appeared to nearly work.But the Bucs last-gasp attempt to score from the 21 yard line as time expired in Sunday's 34-29 loss to Atlanta would not have counted even if receiver DeSean Jackson fielde...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Mike Evans’ pitch to DeSean Jackson on final play was bad, but his toss to the ref cost Bucs more

Mike Evans’ pitch to DeSean Jackson on final play was bad, but his toss to the ref cost Bucs more

The worst throw Mike Evans made in Sunday's last-gasp drive at Atlanta may not have been to receiver DeSean Jackson on the final play.Evans actually made a catch of a pass with 45 seconds remaining in the game at the Falcons' 41-yard line. But he tur...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Defense puts Bucs in another hole in loss to Falcons

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Defense puts Bucs in another hole in loss to Falcons

The Bucs lose in Atlanta 34-29 as the defense gets off to another bad start. Jameis Winston brings them back in his first start of the season, but they lose on a crazy play that was very close to working.Rick Stroud and Times sports columnist Tom Jon...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Bucs-Falcons: Thrilling to the end, Jameis Winston’s return ends on a down note for Tampa Bay

Bucs-Falcons: Thrilling to the end, Jameis Winston’s return ends on a down note for Tampa Bay

ATLANTA — The last play of Sunday's 34-29 Bucs loss to the Falcons was a lot like the way Jameis Winston plays quarterback.It's a wild amusement park ride, adventurous and alluring, with thrilling peaks and painful pitfalls, the Mad Tea Pa...
Published: 10/14/18
DeSean Jackson bemoans missed opportunities in Bucs’ loss

DeSean Jackson bemoans missed opportunities in Bucs’ loss

ATLANTA — DeSean Jackson wasn’t looking forward to the film review of Tampa Bay’s third straight loss. He already knew the missed scoring opportunities would be the most painful part of the Buccaneers’ 34-29 loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. Too...
Published: 10/14/18