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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Bucs S Grimm, DT Gibson among cuts to reach 53 man limit

The Bucs placed an emphasis on improving the league's worst pass defense this off-season and the trickle down effect cost safety Cody Grimm his job.

Grimm, the fourth-year pro from Virginia Tech, and defensive tackle Gary Gibson were among the players released Saturday in order for the Bucs to reach the 53-man roster limit by the 6 p.m. deadline.

The Bucs waived S Sean Baker, CB Deveron Carr, T Jace Daniels, LB Dom DeCicco, LS Andrew DePaola, K Derek Dimke, WR David Douglas, LB Ka'lial Glaud, P Chas Henry, DT Lazarius Levingston, DT Matthew Masifilo, DT Andre Neblett, TE Danny Noble, WR Chris Owusu, T Mike Remmers, CB Mason Robinson and C/G Cody Wallace.

Tampa Bay also terminated the contracts of Gibson, G Roger Allen and WR Jordan Norwood. Place-kicker Lawrence Tynes, who is recovering from MRSA, was placed on the non-football injury list. A team spokeman said the Bucs will pay Tynes $905,000 for 2013. …

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Bucs finally settle their kicking dilemma

The most drama for the Bucs this off-season has centered around their place-kicking situation.

Rian Lindell will bring some stability to that position.

The longtime Buffalo Bills veteran has apparently won the job after signing with the team only 10 days ago.

Lindell beat out rookie Derek Dimke, who is expected to be among the players released today as the team reaches its 53-man roster.

Dimke hit the left upright on a PAT and went 1-of-2 in field goal tries in the Bucs 30-12 loss to the Washington Redskins in the final preseason game Thursday. Lindell, meanwhile, connected on a 50-yard field goal attempt.

The Bucs kicking woes began before training camp when Connor Barth tore his right Achilles playing in a charity basketball game. He was placed on the Non-Football Injury list.

Tampa Bay then signed former Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes. But after suffering an in-grown toenail, he contracted MRSA, an infection that is immune to most antibiotics.

The Bucs informed Tynes by e-mail Saturday that he was being placed on the Non-Football Injury list, according to his wife, Amanda Tynes, who took to Twiitter to condemn the organization. …

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Tough decisions looms before Saturday's cuts

Bucs coach Greg Schiano said it'll be a long next couple days as they try to make their final cuts to put together their 53-man roster by Saturday night.

What players become available from other teams could play into that, but Schiano said he likes the players he has to pick from. It's just a matter of getting it done.

Here are some interesting - and tough - decisions the Bucs will have to make in the next 24 hours.

*Who's the kicker?

K Derek Dimke had impressed earlier in camp, taking over the position by default as veteran Lawrence Tynes was sidelined with an ingrown toenail (and then MRSA). He hit his first five field goals in the preseason, taking the advantage of his opportunities. But with Dimke still unproven, going undrafted in 2012 out of Illinois and having never kicked in a regular season game, the Bucs signed veteran Rian Lindell last week to provide another look.

Lindell, the most accurate kicker in Bills history, boasts plenty of experience. And Lindell looked good Thursday night, including making a 50-yard field goal. Dimke missed an extra point Thursday, but also hit a 30-yarder. …

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Revis will play in the opener vs. Jets: 'That will be a moment.'

There is the comeback, and then there is Darrelle Revis actually coming back to MetLife Stadium to face his former New York Jets team in the regular season opener in nine days.

Having recovered from a torn ACL in left knee, the Bucs’ cornerback said he has tried not to imagine what it will be like going one-on-one with his emotions Sept. 9.

“That will be a moment,’’ Revis said recently. “That will be a moment to try to embrace and see how I feel at that time.

“I think I’m just going to try to be myself and prepare like I do for every week. But I think the big moment will be going there and right before game time, and being there, and running out of the tunnel and all that kind of thing. That will be totally different.’’

Revis, who was traded to the Bucs just prior to the draft in April for the 13th overall pick in the draft and a conditional third rounder in 2014, did not take a snap in four preseason games.

But on Friday, Bucs coach Greg Schiano pronounced Revis ready for the opener against the Jets barring an unforeseen setback.

"Yeah, like I've said all along...as long as there are no setbacks, that's the plan,'' Schiano said. …

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Crabtree has "significant" ankle sprain

Bucs coach Greg Schiano has said they may have to go to a tight end "by committee" this season

But they might be without part of that group as TE Tom Crabtree suffered a "significant ankle sprain" during Thursday's exhibition finale, Schiano said.

Crabtree, who signed a two-year, $1.6 million deal in the offseason, injured the right ankle during the first quarter against the Redskins while serving as a lead blocking fullback, and was carted off. The x-rays were negative, but ankle sprains - specifically high ankle sprains - aren't easy to quickly bounce back from.

Crabtree, a strong blocker, was expected to combine with TEs Luke Stocker and third-string Nate Byham for time at the tight end spot. Stocker and Byham have combined for just 19 receptions last year, so it's a relatively thin position.

On Byham: "Nate is definitely in the equation. There's some other guys in there as well."

In other injury news: …

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Glennon: 'Rough one for offense, that starts with me'

TAMPA -- Bucs rookie quarterback Mike Glennon struggled Thursday night, throwing for just 63 yards with two turnovers in a 30-12 loss to the Redskins to wrap up Tampa Bay's preseason.

"It was a rough one for our offense, and that starts with me," Glennon said after going 7-for-16 for 63 yards with a fumble and interception. "I have to play better, but the bright spot is this preseason and everything's still a learning experience for me. Even though I didn't play real well, I'll learn from this and because of it, i'll be a better player."

Glennon completed just four of his first 11 passes for 13 yards, but picked up in the third quarter, connecting on a 25-yard pass to newcomer Jordan Norwood and another pass to Eric Page. His interception, to college teammate David Amerson, set up a touchdown for the Redskins just before halftime.

"I just couldn't really get things going," he said. "I have to do a better of executing our offense. We'll watch the tape, but more important now, it's time for the season and getting ready for New York."

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Clarification: The Bucs and MRSA

Place-kicker Lawrence Tynes and guard Carl Nicks are recovering from MRSA, an infection that is resistant to antibiotics.

Both had injuries that were treated by the team -- Tynes an in-grown toenail, Nicks a blister on his foot.

But although the Bucs had their training facility sanitized as a precaution, they don't know where the MRSA was contracted.

 "Our primary concern is always the health and safety of our players and staff,'' general manager Mark Dominik said in a release by the team. "Our players were informed of the situation and we sought the advice of experts, including the NFL’s medical advisor, who provided counsel and approved of our comprehensive measures including the treatment of our practice facility."



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Division champs? Gruden has high praise for Bucs, Freeman

Former Bucs coach Jon Gruden, speaking to the media on a "Monday Night Football" conference call Thursday, said he likes his old team to not only make the playoffs but win the NFC South this season.

"I think this is the year for Tampa to win the division and return to the playoffs," Gruden said. "They have a quarterback (Josh Freeman) that has played well in this system. They have two great receivers, Mike Williams and Vincent Jackson. Their offensive line appears to be getting healthy, if (Carl) Nicks returns with Davin Joseph. I think that combination is as good as there is in football, and the left tackle is a Pro Bowler in Donald Penn. They have a running back (Doug Martin) that no one talks enough about. What a phenomenal rookie year he had.

"Defensively, I think we were signing defensive backs at the Pepin distributorship when I was coaching the Bucs. When you bring in Darrelle Revis and Dashon Goldson, you immediately become formidable in the secondary. So I have a lot of confidence that Tampa is going to be a very good football team this year." …

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Tonight: Greg Auman live-blogs ... Bucs lose 30-12 to Redskins

Rookie quarterback Mike Glennon, left, makes his first NFL start -- albeit preseason -- tonight.

DANIEL WALLACE | Times

Rookie quarterback Mike Glennon, left, makes his first NFL start -- albeit preseason -- tonight.

Will rookie quarterback Mike Glennon, left, put a smile or a frown on head coach Greg Schiano's face when he makes his first NFL start tonight? We know Josh Freeman won't play, but what about the other starters? Who will win the competitions at left guard and kicker?

Tonight's preseason finale between the Bucs and Redskins is blacked out in the Tampa Bay area, so join the conversation here as the Times' Greg Auman blogs live from Raymond James Stadium, starting at 7:30 p.m.

7 p.m.: Half-hour before kickoff, the skies have cleared nicely here -- fans may have gotten rain driving to the game, but it looks promising for dry weather for the preseason finale ...

Pregame: Here's a crowd shot from just before kickoff -- crowd looks like what you'd expect for a final preseason game. ...

FIRST QUARTER: Not the start you wanted -- on a third-and-6, Washington's Pat White throws a short pass to ex-Bucs receiver Dezmon Briscoe, who breaks free for a 66-yard gain to the 4-yard line. Rookie Johnthan Banks missed the initial tackle, and Briscoe made safety Sean Baker miss to reach the open field. Washington scored on a 1-yard Evan Royster run for a 7-0 lead, 13:11 left in the first. …

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Tynes 'not responding' well, according to wife Amanda

Lawrence Tynes, with a PICC line in his arm, taking antibiotics.

Amanda Tynes (via Twitter)

Lawrence Tynes, with a PICC line in his arm, taking antibiotics.

Perhaps put off by Bucs coach Greg Schiano's comments that Lawrence Tynes (and guard Carl Nicks) are 'responding well,'' to treatment from MRSA, the wife of the 35-year-old place-kicker took to Twitter and provided commentary and photographic evidence to the contrary.

Amanda described what they're going through as a 'horrible time,' and said anyone who thinks otherwise is mistaken.

"I hear my husband is responding 'well,' to treatment. LOL! He's NOT responding at all yet. This is our #bucslife.'

She then tweeted a photo of Tynes seated on a couch with a PICC line in his arm taking antibiotics.

"Lawrence finally has the right people in his corner,' Amanda later tweeted.

Tynes returned to his home in Kansas City to receive additional treatment for MRSA, an aggressive staph infection that is resistant to most antibiotics.

Tynes and Nicks likely contracted the infection at One Buc Place, the Bucs' training facility, general manager Mark Dominik acknowledged late last week.

Infections essentially ended the careers of former Browns LeCharles Bentley and Joe Jurevicius, and several players sued the Browns, including Bentley and Jurevicius.

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QB Glennon to start, WR Page holds down KR jobs

A few notes to hold you over prior to the Bucs' final preseason game Thursday against the Washington Redskins:

Bucs coach Greg Schiano confirmed rookie Mike Glennon will start at quarterback and play a significant amount. Third-string quarterback Dan Orlovsky said he hopes to play some as well.  Orlovsky has completed all three of his pass attempts for 52 yards this preseason.

Schiano also indicated that receiver Eric Page has an inside track to the kick return jobs.

Page is averaging 30.5 yards per kickoff return and 9.8 yards per punt return this preseason.

"I think Page has done a good job,'' Schiano said. "Every game he's done a better job. He looks very confident back there. He

looks like he belongs. Let's see. Hopefully he can do it again tomorrow.''

 


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Bucs trim roster to 75 players

The Bucs today waived wide receiver Terriun Crump, linebacker Jacob Cutrera (injured), wide receiver Chris Denton, tight end Mike Shanahan, guard Adam Smith and defensive back Branden Smith, and released tight end Zach Miller, the team announced in a news release.

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Glennon will start, Freeman will sit vs. Redskins

Mike Glennon will not only take the first snap against the Washington Redskins, he is expected to take the majority of them during the game.

DANIEL WALLACE | Times

Mike Glennon will not only take the first snap against the Washington Redskins, he is expected to take the majority of them during the game.

Quarterback Mike Glennon has come off the bench in each quarter and finished a game with a winning touchdown drive this preseason.

On Thursday night, the Bucs' rookie will make his first start.

Glennon will not only take the first snap against the Washington Redskins, he is expected to take the majority of them during the game, coach Greg Schiano said. Starting quarterback Josh Freeman will not play but veteran Dan Orlovsky will.

"The plan is, Mike’s going to play a lot,'' Schiano said. "Is he the starter? Proabably. We want Mike to keep getting repetitions. Dan is a multi-year vet who has had a lot of repitions. They’ll both play.''

 

 


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Bucs depth in the secondary is evaporating due to injuries

Danny Gorrer underwent surgery to repair a groin tear, although the injury is not considered season-ending.

EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN | Times

Danny Gorrer underwent surgery to repair a groin tear, although the injury is not considered season-ending.

The main pieces of the Bucs rebuilt secondary still are in place with Darrelle Revis, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron and Jonathan Banks.

But there aren't many spare parts behind them.

On Tuesday, coach Greg Schiano said cornerback Danny Gorrer underwent surgery to repair a groin tear, although the injury is not considered season-ending. He could start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform list and become eligible to play after six weeks of the regular season.

Cornerback Anthony Gaitor was placed on Injured Reserve Monday after tearing his ACL in Saturday's 17-16 win over the Miami Dolphins.

Both Gorrer and Gaitor were expected to make the 53-man roster.

"I don't know who was going to make the team, so I don't want to go there,'' Schiano said. "I do think that we had depth and now we don't. We have enough right now. But you lose any more, it's going to get dicey. Not dicey like last year dicey, but that last year has put us in a better position for now.''

The Bucs still have a battle going on for the third cornerback spot between Leonard Johnson and Michael Adams, who played well againt the Dolphins. …

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Bucs' preseason finale vs. Redskins is blacked out

The Bucs final preseason game Thursday against the Washington Redskins at Raymond James Stadium will be subject to a local television blackout.

Because the team took the 85 percent exemption, it means the Bucs were unable to sell between 45,000 and 50,000 non-premium seats for Thursday's game in order to lift the blackout. It's the fourth straight year both the home preseason games were not televised locally.

In fact, 19 of the last 23 home regular-season games have been blacked out.

 



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