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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Garcia dismayed by status of contract talks

Quarterback Jeff Garcia has long been disappointed by the Bucs' apparent unwillingness to renegotiate his contract.

Today, in making his first comments on the matter in several weeks, Garcia was practically fuming over the lack of progress in contract talks with the Bucs while implying he might resort to measures that will pressure the club to address his deal.

"This is a physical game and you want players to go out and give everything they have and lay their bodies on the line, lay their hearts on the line," Garcia said, in an apparent message to team management. "Well, we want you to lay something on the line."

Garcia, 38, said he might not continue to attend voluntary offseason practices, though he was present for today's workout. He stopped short of saying the contract dispute would affect his reporting to training camp or next month's mandatory mini-camp, but he ruled nothing out. Garcia is entering the final year of a two-year contract and will make a base salary of $2-million, which he considers a bargain for a quarterback coming off a Pro Bowl season.

He also made light of other players' struggles to address their contracts, namely running back Earnest Graham, who Garcia indicated is not a priority of management. Graham was not present and has been absent for each of the team's four organized team activity days since last month.

As for Garcia's presence, don't count on him being around much longer.

"There might be a time when I have to stand up," he said. "I hate to do that to jeopardize my teammates because they're out here and I don't want to let them down in any sort of way. But i think at some point, you just want to see the respect (from) up top given."

We'll have more on this story throughout the day, so check back soon.

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 3:02pm]


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