Bucs-Chiefs live; Josh Freeman injured
So, you're bummed out because tonight's Bucs game is blacked out on television.
But you're in luck. We're here and we're live on tampabay.com to bring you a flavor of what's happening here at the stadium. The Bucs and Chiefs will be emerging from their respective lockers rooms momentarily with kickoff a few minutes later.
Stay tuned for more as the game goes along.
- 4:05 til kickoff: As I noted in a previous post, Kellen Winslow is not expected to play tonight, although he is suited up and did go through pre-game warmups. He isn't hurt, but the club is giving him another week of rest after that offseason knee surgery. He has looked good in practice and should be ready to go next week.
2:00 til kickoff: This crowd is absolutely terrible. Granted people are still filing in, but there were nearly this many here for the open practice at the stadium during training camp. Maybe they should have offered $1 hot dogs tonight, too.
15:00 1 Q: Bucs will play D first.
12:41 1 Q: Bucs got a fumble recovery from Geno Hayes to take possession but offense messed around and had to call a timeout with the play clock running down. Not sure what tripped up Josh Freeman but they nearly had delay of game.
11:52 1Q: A beautiful receiver screen t Mike Williams. Should have seen Donald Penn get outside and throw a seal block to open the hole. Williams picked up the first down. Stroughter threw a nice block, too.
11:07 1Q: Bucs had to settle for FG. Drive stalled after Freeman threw incomplete becuase of a blitz.
10:03 1Q: Not sure, but Freeman might have gotten hit on his right (throwing) thumb. Got some tape on there and they've been looking at it. Doesn't look too serious though.
9:00 1Q: Check that... Freeman to the locker room with the doc!!!!
7:17 1Q: No official info from the team on Freeman but he is back in the locker room. Might be getting x-rayed. We'll see.
6:39 1Q: Meanwhile, the defense is getting trampled. After a long kick return, Bucs give up a TD pass to Jeremy Horne. 7-3 Chiefs
6:32 1Q: Freeman is done for the night. No word on the outcome of the x-rays but he's back on the sidelines sitting down.
4:38 1Q: It's the Josh Johnson show now. Just hit a very nice crossing route to Mike Williams who made the catch between two defenders. One of the better throws you'll see from Johnson, I think.
3:20 1Q: Donald Penn not having his best night. Got beat on the last third down play and Johnson almost got taken out, too. As it was, he was hit as he threw and the ball wobbled incomplete. Chiefs bringing LOTS of pressure and Bucs have handled it in a very average fashion.
2:00 1 Q: EJ Biggers playing ahead of Elbert Mack tonight. I think that's the way it's going to end up, too. Of course, no sooner than I type this does Biggers get called for holding.
12:52 2Q: Best defensive series yet. Matt Cassel tries to step up in the pocket but is sealed by Gerald McCoy who drops him after a 1-yard gain. Kyle Moore flushed him out.
12:52 2Q: Gonna go out on a limb and say Freeman returning to the sidelines and milling around joking with teammates is probably a good sign.
10:38 2Q: Starters still in. Longer than promised.
9:35 2Q: Micheal Spurlock scores on a 53-yard touchdown against some of the KC starting defense. Interesting thing is Spurlock was in the game with the TB starters. Wonder if they're taking a longer look at him because he's getting serious consideration for final roster. A very real possibility.
9:27 2Q: Brian Price and Gerald McCoy lined up together on the last KC possession. Quincy Black shoots up the middle and gets the sack. Untouched. Punt.
7:06 2Q: For the record, Michael Clayton was targeted on the last pass, but it was a horrible throw from Johnson. A real floater. Clayton didn't drop it. It was too far behind him. Actually gave great effort.
5:11 2Q: HUggins, by the way has 19 yards on two carries. He isn't palying against starting defenders, though. Little disappointed about that. Wanted to see him against the 1s.
4:45 2Q: By the way, I haven't seen Arrelious Benn yet. Someone put out an APB.
2:15 2Q: Odd factoid: The Bucs have a defensive unit on the field that, other than Stylez White,has Tim Crowder as probably the oldest player. And he's maybe 25. And they're playing against the KC starting O too.
2:00 2Q: Cody Grimm just leveled a ball carrier. He actually fumbled but was ruled down by the officials. Grimm could be a nice little surpriise for a 7th rounder.
1:00 2Q: Bucs' corners right now are Elbert Mack, EJ Biggers and Derrick Roberson.
:03 2Q: This thrown-together defensive unit at least didn't give up a TD to the starting KC offense. Had to settle for a FG. Tied 10-10 at the half.
Some random thoughts...
Was surprised how much the Chiefs blitzed in the first half. Not sure what that was all about, but the Bucs weren't expecting that. Needed to make a lot of adjustments (yes, I realize it's preseason) and didn't adjust all that well...
Josh Johnson can be electrifying, but he can be equally annoying to watch, too. Sometimes you have to let the play develop. The problem with Josh is as soon as there's some heat, he's off to the races...
The receiver battle is heating up. Spurlock gets into the action and Mike Williams is still a manchild. Reggie Brown not showing much but they haven't targeted him much either. I still feel like there's a big dropoff after Williams and Stroughter.
10:40: Rudy Carpenter started the third quarter. Guessing the Bucs think they can't afford to lose another QB tonight so Johnson is done.
10:19: For some reason, Bucs just used Adam Hayward as their fullback on the last play. can't hurt I guess.
9:28: Derrick Ward just took a handoff from Rudy Carpenter. Yes, you read that right. I'm guessing if you're in this game right now, you probably are fighting for a roster spot. And it gets worse: Ward just got hurt and had to limp off.
7:54: Seeing a lot of questions about Clayton in the comments section. I believe Clayton has been targeted twice. He caught one for 5 yards. The other was the poor pass from Johnson that was waay behiind him. I've been hard on Clayton like everyone else, but I can't knock him for that one. He did an amazing job just to contort his body in midair and make an attempt to catch it.
JOSH FREEMAN HAS A FRACTURED THUMB... More to come shortly
1:53: So the Bucs' official version is that Freeman has a fractured tip of his thumb and will be out til the regular season opener. They say he'll be back practicing at the start of Week 1. I'd suggest you wait and see as injuries have a mind of their own.
1:02: Also, Derrick Ward has a head injury. He took a shot right on the top of the helmet on the play I referenced earlier. He's done for the night.
14:34: Had a long injury delay for a cart to come out for a Chiefs backup. Huggins just busted loose for a 17-yard gain but... holding. It comes back. And did I mention? Derrick Ward is out with an injury. Just saying.
12:19: Okay, someone take away Raheem's challenge flag. Seriously, we're on deadline dude. Gotta get our stories in the paper. Game needs to end!