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Bucs' Evans adept at drawing penalties on opponents

Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans (13) attempts to make the catch but is interfered with by Dallas Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne (24) during second quarter action. [DIRK SHADD | Times]

Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans (13) attempts to make the catch but is interfered with by Dallas Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne (24) during second quarter action. [DIRK SHADD | Times]

TAMPA — Over the past four weeks, the Bucs' Mike Evans is second in the NFL with 488 receiving yards, and that doesn't include another area where he has helped move the chains: drawing pass interference penalties from opponents.

In the past three games, Evans has garnered 108 yards on four pass interference flags, including a 45-yarder on Cowboys CB Morris Claiborne during Sunday's victory. In a win at Atlanta this month, Evans drew interference penalties on CB Desmond Trufant on back-to-back plays, the second for 39 yards, then added a 16-yard gain on a penalty on the winning drive in overtime.

Is there a skill to receivers drawing penalties on deep balls? Evans smiled when asked Wednesday.

"Some people act it out. It's like basketball, when you're trying to get a foul, when you just throw your body up," said Evans, a two-sport star in high school at Galveston, Texas. "I try to do that sometimes. We knew the Cowboys were going to hold. They're a holding team, they're a very physical team. We knew they were going to do that, and luckily, we got some calls."

Asked if he has taken any drama classes along the way, Evans said he hadn't.

"I watch a lot of NBA," he said. "I see those guys flop around."

INJURY UPDATE: DE Jacquies Smith, who has missed the past two games with a sprained ankle, returned to practice Wednesday, while WR Vincent Jackson, out three games with a knee injury, continues to be held out of drills.

The other key injury is DE George Johnson, who left Sunday's game with a calf injury and still had his right foot in a boot at Wednesday's practice. Rookie G Ali Marpet, who missed Sunday's game with an ankle injury, returned to practice Wednesday in a limited capacity.

Two more Bucs recovering from injuries — TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (shoulder) and S Major Wright (hamstring) — continue to practice, though they've been practicing in recent weeks and have still been held out of game action. OL Evan Smith, who briefly left Sunday's game, was listed as being limited Wednesday with a knee injury.

TRANSACTIONS: The Bucs, with two openings on their 53-man roster, signed DE Lawrence Sidbury, who adds depth while Smith and Johnson are limited by injuries. Sidbury was on the roster two weeks ago but was inactive for one game and waived after that. The team also brought back two familiar faces to the practice squad — rookie LB Josh Keyes, who was with the team until final preseason cuts, and C Josh Allen, who missed the preseason with injury and was among the final cuts.

THIS AND THAT: Eagles coach Chip Kelly said during a conference call he was "really excited" about the opportunity to coach the Bucs in 2012 but ultimately opted not to come to Tampa due to his "desire to stay at Oregon." … Eagles QB Sam Bradford didn't practice Wednesday because he hasn't completed the concussion protocol or been cleared by an independent neurologist. Also, ESPN reported that Bradford has a separated shoulder. If he is out Sunday, Mark Sanchez will start with Thad Lewis the backup. … Bucs QB Jameis Winston grew up a big fan of former Eagles QB Randall Cunningham. "I just fell in love with him," Winston said. "He was one of the quarterbacks that brought excitement to the game." Cunningham played for the Eagles from 1985-95 during a 16-year career.

Contact Greg Auman at

Bucs' Evans adept at drawing penalties on opponents 11/18/15 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 18, 2015 10:06pm]
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