Can Revis be Revis? Sometimes yes, other times no
Darrelle Revis is always competing, against opposing quarterbacks, receivers and coaches.
But the toughest challenge he has faced may be trying to compete with himself.
The Bucs cornerback, who will make his first NFL start Sunday against his former New York Jets team since tearing his left ACL in Week 3 last season, is trying to measure up to the elite defensive player he was prior to the injury.
Can Revis be Revis again?
"Sometimes, yeah,'' Revis said Wednesday. "Sometimes you'll see spurts and I'll say I feel it, and sometimes I won't. I think that feeling there is just getting my leg even stronger. I hear a whole bunch of stories of hey, you've got to get out there first and you've got to just let it rip and the strength will come over time. It's something for me to just go out there and play, man. I've been playing and I've been practicing and I've been out there making plays here and there and then some plays, maybe not so good. At that point, that's what it is.
"I'm not a perfect football player. I mean, we all make mistakes after the game when the sheet comes back of bad plays and good plays, so I've just got to go back and go out there and play ball.''
Revis did not play in the preseason. In fact, he said it was never much of a discussion as the focus was on strengthening his leg and being ready for the regular-season opener against the Jets.
But it has been a slow process, Revis said, and he's not sure how many snaps he will play Sunday.
"I look at it when I go out to practice as just try to go out and make plays like I have in the past and that's how I've got to approach it,'' Revis said. "I can't sit here and get down on myself if I'm a step late on a play here or there, I've just got to keep on improving and keep on building on me getting into shape and getting back to where I used to be playing at an elite level.''