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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Zuttah will replace Larsen at LG vs. Vikings



Jeremy Zuttah's versatility has always been his greatest strength and perhaps his biggest curse.

Capable of playing guard, center or tackle, the Bucs seem to prefer to leave him on the bench in case of an injury.

But Zuttah will start at left guard Sunday in place of Ted Larsen against the Vikings, Raheem Morris said Friday.

"Zuttah has been playing well in the preseason,'' Morris said. "I know he's a smart player. I know I'm going to get that from him. But I just want him to play hard and nasty like he had been playing. Larsen didn't play terrible last week, but coming off the (ankle) injury, I didn't think he played as aggressive as he normally could and give me the power that he normally gave me last year. So we'll try a little change up this week.''

Larsen, the former Palm Harbor University High School standout, injured his ankle in the Bucs' preseason game against New England.

"When he injured that thing in the Patriots' game, he didn't want to tell anybody. It's just one of those things, you've got to be the coach of that whole situation. Larsen is a young player who doesn't want to give anybody any snaps...he doesn't want to be Wally Pipp'ed.''

Zuttah, who started eight games at center and one at left guard last season,  said he was looking forward to playing and would prefer to remain at one position.

"I'm looking forward to getting back out there,'' Zuttah said. "It's tough having to play a couple positions. You feel like if you could lock in at one, you could kind of specialize at that thing. But you kind of do what you have to do to help the team. I'm just looking forward to my opportunity.''   

 Morris said Zuttah's football IQ enables him to play every line position.

"It's really amazing to be that smart,'' Morris said. "He's quarterback smart. He can go to any position and pretty much play any position. He can play backup tight end for us. He does it all -- tackle, guard center. He's athletic enough to probably go get a carry or two. He's really a versatile player and a great addition to our football team.

"He gets angry, but he always handles it the right way. He takes it out on the practice field and usually I end up having to tell him to calm down at practice.''






[Last modified: Friday, September 16, 2011 1:19pm]


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