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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Bucs' Arrelious Benn shines in front of hometown crowd



Perhaps the Bucs should play all of their games in the Washington D.C. area. Maybe then WR Arrelious Benn would turn in a performance like Sunday’s every week.

The Washington native had the best game of his young career, the rookie catching four passes for 122 yards, including receptions of 64 and 43 yards. His 64-yard gain on a deep ball down the sideline in the second quarter was the Bucs’ longest completion of the season and the longest in nearly two years.

With 15 family members in the FedEx Field stands, it was the perfect scenario for Benn.

“It was perfect timing,” he said. “It’s something I dream about.”

On the 64-yard catch, Benn took advantage of a one-on-one matchup with Redskins CB D’Angelo Hall on a play designed to target Hall. In an effort to exploit Hall’s sometimes poor tackling technique, the Bucs had been running toward him, blocking other defenders and leaving Hall in one-on-one matchups with running backs on the perimeter. The Bucs gave Hall the same look he’d seen several other times, but then threw him a changeup.

“We’d basically been blocking everybody and making him make the tackle,” QB Josh Freeman said. “So I just really took a three-step drop and the backs sold it really well and (Hall) kind of flat-footed, thinking, ‘I’m going to step up and make this tackle.’ He adjusted pretty quick and got on the run.

“But it was too late by the that time.”

Benn has been the beneficiary of defenses’ attempts to contain WR Mike Williams and TE Kellen Winslow. But Benn’s propensity for explosive plays – he also gained 17 yards on an end around – is making it a tough call for opponents.

“I’m getting more comfortable each week and the coaches are getting comfortable with me,” he said. “It’s just a matter of finding ways to get me the ball, which they’ve been doing.”

[Last modified: Sunday, December 12, 2010 11:31pm]


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