Jameis Winston experiences some rookie ups and downs

Jameis Winston throws three quick interceptions, but ends with an improved 11-on-11 period. Associated Press
Jameis Winston throws three quick interceptions, but ends with an improved 11-on-11 period.Associated Press
Published August 3 2015
Updated August 4 2015

TAMPA -— Jameis Winston performed like — well — a rookie NFL quarterback in practice Monday, throwing three interceptions on his first five passes during a team blitz period.

He was picked off by S D.J. Swearinger and CB Leonard Johnson on consecutive plays. After two completions, CB Sterling Moore stole another pass.

Bucs coach Lovie Smith, who was pleased to see his defense create turnovers, said he wanted to give Winston defensive looks early in training camp that Winston inevitably will see during the season.

"Our goal is to get Jameis ready," said Smith, who named Winston the starter when players reported Friday. "We're doing a lot of things that we normally don't do this early, too, to try and give him as many looks as we possibly can. And it was the one blitz period is where he had his most trouble and that's how it should be for a young quarterback.

"We're not inventing defense or anything like that with what we're doing on the other side. Jameis will tell you on some of those plays he just can't make, but it's part of the process of becoming a good quarterback in the league to go through some days like this. Keep in mind there are some scholarship players on the other side that we feel pretty good about. With my glass being half full, I'm pretty fired up about those takeaways we got on the defensive side."

Winston rebounded with an improved 11-on-11 period to end practice.

GOOD START FOR ROOKIE OL: The Bucs are banking on the quick development of rookie LT Donovan Smith and RG Ali Marpet, both second-round picks. Wearing pads for the first time in training camp, both made a respectable showing in one-on-one pass drills. But each had bad plays as well. Donovan Smith stood up well to Bucs DE Jacquies Smith, who had six sacks last season in eight starts. Marpet blocked Cowboys free agent DT Henry Melton to start the drill, but was whipped inside on his next attempt.

"For our rookies, Ali Marpet, Donovan Smith, it was their first taste of a live guy coming off the edge running right over them," Lovie Smith said. "I thought they held up and did some good things while they were out there, so that's encouraging."

Marpet is making the biggest leap, from Division III Hobart College to the NFL.

"I think after awhile what you see is, 'Yes, guys are a lot faster but I have a little speed, too,' " Lovie Smith said of Marpet. "I know I saw his first rep going against a pretty good football player in Henry Melton and he more than held his own."

THIS AND THAT: Second-year pro Kadeem Edwards worked as the first-team right guard Monday, with Garrett Gilkey shifted to backup center. … Another second-year player, Kevin Pamphile, worked as the starting left tackle. … S Chris Conte missed a second straight practice with a hamstring injury, with WR Louis Murphy (ankle) and DT Akeem Spence (back) also out. … CB Alterraun Verner got a look on punt returns, along with WR Kaelin Clay, WR Donteea Dye and RB Bobby Rainey.

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.

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