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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Mario Urrutia makes a splash at first practice

7

August

WR Mario Urrutia was thrown into the fire real quick on his first day as a Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Urrutia, a former Louisville standout, arrived just 30 minutes before this morning's practice, having flown down from his home in in Kentucky after getting signed Thursday. The 6-foot-6, 232-pound receiver, recently released from the Jets, didn't waste any time.

Urrutia, 23, made a nice leaping touchdown catch over Tanard Jackson early in practice. Later on, Urrutia was on the receiving end of a slant from Josh Johnson, and took it 70 yards for a touchdown. "He had a good day," GM Mark Dominik said.

Did he expect to score like that on his first day?

"Always - of course,"said a smiling Urrutia. "Every time I touch the ball, I try to score. But no, I didn't really expect to get thrown into the fire that fast, but I'll take it. I loved it."

Bucs coach Raheem Morris said he's been impressed with Urrutia since he faced him while a coach at Kansas State. With the receiving group hit by some recent injuries, the Bucs needed to add to their depth, and Morris said when you have a chance to get a guy with "that kind of talent," you take it.

Urrutia spent last season on the practice squad with the Bengals, saying he took it as kind of a redshirt year, learning from the likes of Chad Johnson and Chris Henry. He's familiar with Raymond James Stadium, having played against USF. In one game against the Bulls, he recorded six catches for 133 yards in a losing effort.

"South Florida - I did my damage to them," he joked. "I hope they don't take it personally out there. Hopefully this is home now."

-- JOE SMITH

joesmith@sptimes.com

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 3:37pm]

    

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