Daniels in as first-team guard, Meredith to backup tackle
TAMPA -- The first aftershocks of the Bucs' offensive line struggling in Friday's preseason opener came Sunday, as unheralded Jace Daniels saw his first action with the first line and veteran Jamon Meredith is out of the mix at guard for now.
"They want to see if I can step up and be on this 53," Daniels said after working all of Sunday's practice as the first-team right guard. "I'm feeling good out here. Tomorrow will be a better day. It's a little different out there blocking Gerald McCoy."
Daniels, 24, signed with the Bucs last year as an undrafted rookie from Division II Northern Michigan. He was among the team's final cuts, but spent 12 weeks on the practice squad. He had worked with the second-string line at guard and center and now has a chance to prove himself as the fifth player to see first-team reps at guard.
While Oniel Cousins held his spot at the first-team left guard, Daniels pushed Meredith -- who has 20 starts in the past two years -- to working as the second-team left tackle.
"To get to the first team, you have to ... do some good things in practice, and Jace has been doing that throughout, whether it be at center or guard," coach Lovie Smith said. "Jamon didn't play as well as he needed to, and we realize he can play guard and tackle, so we're going to let him concentrate a little bit more at the tackle position and give that next group of guards an opportunity. Jace is the next guy."
Daniels said he was pleased with how the second-team line played Friday -- the team's best offensive success came from backup Mike Glennon, including the Bucs' only touchdown of the night.
"As a full line, I think we did good," he said. "We were all together for a while throughout camp, so we felt comfortable with each other and I think we did what we needed to do."
Second-year pro Patrick Omameh and rookie Kadeem Edwards, who have gotten looks with the first team in camp, worked as the second-team guards in Sunday's practice.