Make us your home page

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 QB Garcia says he's healthy to start

TAMPA — An ankle injury is not what will prevent quarterback Jeff Garcia from practicing or playing this week.

Only coach Jon Gruden is responsible for that.

Garcia, wearing no special support for a sprained ankle he sustained in Sunday's 24-20 loss to the Saints, said he disagreed with Gruden's decision to bench him for the Falcons game.

But Garcia acknowledged that he could have played better in the opener and vowed to correct his mistakes while getting his 38-year-old body healthy. Veteran Brian Griese will start Sunday.

"Right now, having only played one game, I would've liked the opportunity to battle through whatever I'm going through," Garcia said Thursday. "But Coach made that decision early in the week, and I have to live with it.

"I understand in the game on Sunday there were a couple plays I left out on the field. … I know I can … learn from whatever I didn't do."

Garcia was limited in practice Thursday. He said he hurt his back early in the offseason. He injured his right calf Aug. 31, which force him to miss most of training camp, and he has a jammed pinkie finger on his throwing hand. Now the ankle.

"I've played through a lot worse before, and that's not anything new," he said. "It's just one thing after another, and I know everybody will say, 'Hey, well, he's old, and he's running out of gas, and this is what happens to old guys.' … All I can do is focus on getting better and being supportive."

Emotionally, Garcia said, he has tried to move on from the offseason's disappointments, including the Bucs' failure to make up for a missed play-time incentive bonus and the team's attempts to trade for Brett Favre.

"I feel like I'm emotionally stable. I'm not a basket case," Garcia said. "I'm not somebody who's going to take away what this team's focus is. I don't know if Coach believes that things that have stockpiled … and that maybe I have allowed to stockpile, have taken away from the edge that I normally have on the field. If that's what he believes … I need to do my best to get that back and prove to him that it's there."

Bucs QB Garcia says he's healthy to start 09/11/08 [Last modified: Monday, September 15, 2008 2:36pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. 'Deadliest Catch' captain talks reality TV, Snoop Dogg and Tampa Bay


    Keith Colburn is best known as captain of the Wizard on the Discovery Network series Deadliest Catch. Colburn and crew go to battle in the Bering Sea working one of the deadliest jobs in America. A seasoned veteran, Keith has filmed 11 seasons of the show and is still going strong with his relief captain …

    Captain Keith Colburn is seen in this undated photo courtesy of the Discovery Channel. Courtesy of the Discovery Channel
  2. HomeTeam 100: Players 51-60


    TAMPA - Wharton defensive back AJ Hampton will help lead the Wildcats into the 2017 season. Taken 7-6-17 by Scott Purks
  3. Rays series preview: Who are the Rangers?


    The road trip is done, but the Rays will still face a western team, as they tasks on the Rangers in a three-game series at Tropicana Field. Here's the information you need to know about Texas before the action kicks off.

    Record: 45-50, fourth in AL West

    Starter Tyson Ross, left, and catcher Jonathan Lucroy, right, have struggled immensely this season.
  4. Checklist to help Bucs swagger into the postseason


    To boost their playoff prospects, the Bucs need to beat Atlanta at least once, as they did last year. Twice would be even nicer. (Loren Elliott, Times)
  5. Baddest of them all? Steelers LB James Harrison, hands down


    "No badass list is complete - or should begin anywhere else other than with - James Harrison," says Eric Edholm, an NFL writer who has worked at Yahoo Sports. (Associated Press)