Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs kicker Connor Barth's kick a hit with teammates

TAMPA — K Connor Barth endeared himself to teammates Tuesday afternoon, ending the special teams practice with a 51-yard field goal.

That drew cheers from teammates who didn't have to run up-downs in the heat because of the make.

"It's a good pressure kick, something like a game," Barth said, smiling.

Barth's solid nine-game stint with the Bucs last season — including hitting the winning field goal in the second game against the Saints and three field goals of 50 yards or more against Miami — puts him in a good spot this training camp. Undrafted rookie Hunter Lawrence (Texas) is the only other kicker here. But Barth, 24, who got waived after camp competitions in Kansas City in 2008 and Miami in 2009, is not taking anything for granted.

"There's no question I'm in a way better position than I was last year and the year before," Barth said. "And I definitely see myself in good shape here. But as a kicker, you can't get complacent. Because they're always looking for somebody to replace you. You've got to keep working hard and prove yourself."

TOUGH TRIO: WRs Sammie Stroughter and Micheal Spurlock made some big plays as kick returners last season when stepping in for injured former Pro Bowl player Clifton Smith.

Having three capable players to return punts and kickoffs is a good problem to have for the Bucs, and special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia sees a quality competition brewing. He said the coaches likely will wait to see what the final roster looks like before deciding who will step in in Week 1.

"The thing about them is that they're competing at the (offensive) position they're playing also," Bisaccia said. "So that's going to hold a lot of weight when the time comes for who makes it and who doesn't."

Stroughter said each of them brings something different to the table, from Smith's vision to Spurlock's explosiveness, and they learn from each other.

"It's always a competition," he said. "Clifton is the best. You try to sit back and learn from him as much as possible, same with Spurlock. … You put three heads together, it's better than just one."

A NEW IMAGE: There were plenty of questions about rookie WR Mike Williams past when he was drafted by the Bucs in April. His draft stock dropped because he left Syracuse with three games to play last season after missing curfew for the second time.

But coach Raheem Morris has said he believes Williams can carve a different niche with the Bucs and become one of the franchise's success stories.

"It can be special for him. I talk about it all the time with him," Morris said. "Look around this place. We've created those kinds of players, the Warrick Dunns, the Brian Kellys, the Donnie Abrahams. I can mention different players every single day, great character men, guys who you are proud to say that you know.

"(Williams) found out how hard it is when you're not on the football team and you're not playing. I don't think he wants to mess that up again. He's kind of grown up a little bit, and he's ready to be treated fairly."

Times staff writer Stephen Holder contributed to this report. Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@sptimes.com.

Bucs kicker Connor Barth's kick a hit with teammates 08/03/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 3, 2010 10:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Gators rally past Kentucky, streak hits 31

    Blogs

    LEXINGTON, Ky. — For the second week in a row, Florida found itself storming the field in a game that came down to the last second. A 57-yard field-goal attempt by Kentucky kicker Austin MacGinnis came just a few feet short of making history and snapping a 30-year losing streak, as the No. 20 Gators escaped a …

    Florida wide receiver Brandon Powell (4) scores a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Kentucky, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, in Lexington, Ky.
  2. Pen makes it way too interesting as Rays hang on for 9-6 win

    Blogs

    A couple of home runs provided the news pegs of the night for the Rays, but it was more topical to talk about what nearly happened as they hung on for a 9-6 win over the Orioles.

    Lucas Duda's three-run homer in the third inning was the Rays' record-breaking 217th of the season, as well as his …

  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi admitted he probably should have gone on the DL sooner than late July for the back stiffness that was keeping him from throwing the ball where he wanted to. He has since found an impressive groove, with another strong outing Saturday.

  4. Matt Baker's takeaways from Florida State-N.C. State

    College

    RB Cam Akers still looks like a former high school quarterback at times. His first two touches (30 yards) were special, but the freshman juked instead of powering ahead on his third (an unsuccessful third-and-1 rush). That's why the Seminoles are easing him in, as they did with Dalvin Cook three years ago.

    Running back Cam Akers carries for a first down during the third quarter as FSU eases the freshman into the college game.
  5. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.