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Davin Joseph picked as lone Tampa Bay Buccaneers player in Pro Bowl

TAMPA — The Bucs' fortunes on the field this season don't suggest there has been much stellar play, but Davin Joseph has transcended the team's 4-11 record.

Joseph, Tampa Bay's starting right guard, was named to the Pro Bowl on Tuesday, recognized for the second time in four years.

He was the Bucs' only selection to the NFL's all-star showcase, to be held Jan. 29 in Honolulu. Joseph was named after the 2008 season as one of three Tampa Bay selections. Last season Bucs LT Donald Penn was a replacement for the Packers' Chad Clifton.

Joseph said the honor is representative of Tampa Bay's offensive line as a whole.

"I want to thank God first, and then I'd thank my teammates," Joseph said. "We do everything as one. In the midst of a lot of negativity, (the offensive line) has really been pushing and holding ourselves accountable.

"This isn't an individual honor at all."

Joseph said the offensive line has been mostly consistent.

"I think we definitely stepped up our play and cleaned up a lot of errors in our play," he said. "We all got better this season."

Joseph, Tampa Bay's first-round pick in 2006, has been a mainstay throughout his career. He was re-signed in the preseason after the club made him its No. 1 free-agent priority. After several days of negotiations, Joseph signed a seven-year, $52 million deal.

THIN AT DT: Brian Price is battling two sprained ankles. Roy Miller is playing through pain in his back. Albert Haynesworth was inactive last week and rarely practices because of a sore knee.

And those are the defensive tackles the Bucs hope they can count on Sunday at Atlanta.

The Bucs had only three active defensive tackles in Saturday's 48-16 loss at Carolina — Miller, Frank Okam and Jovan Haye, who signed last week as a free agent. The Bucs also had to use DE Michael Bennett at tackle in some pass rush situations.

Price, who was inactive and missed his first start of the season Saturday, returned to practice Tuesday and is expected to face the Falcons. Gerald McCoy, the third overall pick in 2010, went on injured reserve with a torn biceps Nov. 7.

COOL BREES: With the Bucs visiting Atlanta on Sunday, Morris watched Monday's Falcons-Saints game. New Orleans QB Drew Brees stole the show, and Bucs coach Raheem Morris wasn't surprised to see him break Dan Marino's single-season passing yardage record.

As a division foe, Morris has game-planned for Brees and the Saints six times as Bucs head coach and four other times as a Tampa Bay assistant.

"He's phenomenal. … He is certainly something to watch," Morris said.

Morris sent a congratulatory text to Saints coach Sean Payton.

"It's pretty special to watch anyone break a record," Morris said. "I'm just glad it wasn't on us. It's something special, especially to do it in 15 games. A 27-year-old record (broken) by a guy like Drew, in that city, to bring it back (from Hurricane Katrina) and win a Super Bowl, it's like the perfect world. Now they have a chance to go into the playoffs and see what they can do."

HAMSTRUNG: S Tanard Jackson showed the effects of 56 weeks on the suspended list by straining his left hamstring his second game back against the Bears in London. Jackson has struggled a bit since but Morris believes he will benefit from an offseason.

"(He will have) a chance to be around his teammates, having a chance to get in the weight room, lift weights with a group of guys he's familiar with, being able to do all those things with his team and his position coaches," Morris said.

INJURY UPDATE: T Jeremy Trueblood, (concussion), WR Preston Parker (concussion), Haynesworth (knee) and DE Michael Bennett (toe) did not practice Tuesday.

Bucs at Falcons

1 p.m. Sunday, Atlanta, Ch. 13, 103.5-FM, 620-AM

Line: Falcons by 13

Davin Joseph picked as lone Tampa Bay Buccaneers player in Pro Bowl 12/27/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 27, 2011 11:17pm]
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