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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

After impressive performance, Bucs' Josh Johnson a tough self critic



The Bucs have a conscientious group of quarterbacks, and backup Josh Johnson is no different.

Johnson, who played extensively Friday at Kansas City, critiqued his performance in which he was the Bucs’ leading passer and rusher. He finished 7 of 12 for 108 yards through the air and rushed five times for 57 yards on the ground.

Yet, what Johnson first emphasized when asked about his play wasn’t his 24-yard scramble or his 116 quarterback rating. He instead pointed to his two sacks, calling them unacceptable.

“I wish I could have those back,” Johnson said. “I was just trying to let the routes develop. On the first one, I probably could have (thrown to) the back. On the second one, the guy just made a good play. I just have to make sure everything registers when I get in there. That comes with reps. I mean, I know where the back is. Even if I throw it at his feet, that takes away (a loss of yards). It’s just something I can get better at. I just need to keep coming out and executing the game plan and get guys going.”

But Johnson shouldn’t let that completely overshadow what was a very promising showing against the Chiefs.

“It’s a good start and there’s a lot to learn from,” he said. “I try to build upon these games and get better. In our quarterback room, we’re about completions. We had no turnovers. We made throws.”

Two of the four drives Johnson led resulted in punts, but the other two stretched 66 and 55 yards. While the second-quarter clock ran out with Johnson’s unit at the Chiefs’ 4, Johnson finished the deal in the third quarter, taking the Bucs on a touchdown drive that he capped with a 3-yard touchdown pass to Micheal Spurlock. Johnson overcame a third-and-10 earlier in the drive with a 15-yard strike to Spurlock and, later, hit rookie tight end Daniel Hardy with a dart that gained 16 yards to help overcome a James Lee holding penalty.

Johnson was most pleased with his ability to avoid mistakes. He throw no interceptions. He made mostly high-percentage throws. He didn’t force balls.

He pointed to his continuity in coordinator Greg Olson’s offense as the reason for that.

“That’s what we want to come out and do,” Johnson said. “It was good. I think we all (the quarterbacks) made good decisions. Josh (Freeman), me and Rudy (Carpenter). We trusted in our progressions.

“That’s the good thing about having the same offense even though we didn’t have an offseason. We understand the reads. It’s just second nature. It makes our job a lot easier.”

[Last modified: Saturday, August 13, 2011 4:16pm]


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