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)

Raheem Morris, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ready for Steelers' three-headed QB monster

TAMPA — The Bucs could see one of three Steelers quarterbacks when Pittsburgh comes to town Sunday, but Tampa Bay's players and coaches won't bother trying to determine which one they'll face.

With Steelers starter Ben Roethlisberger serving a league suspension for off-the-field conduct, the Bucs will face Dennis Dixon, Byron Leftwich or Charlie Batch. Dixon injured his knee Sunday, and his status is unclear. Leftwich was re-signed Monday after being released last week in a procedural move while he waited for an injury to heal. Batch finished Sunday's game at Tennessee after Dixon left.

"That's the nature of the beast," Bucs coach Raheem Morris said. "Prepare your game plans. Prepare for (each) guy and be ready to deal. When (something) comes up in the game, you've already talked about situations, and you've already talked about how you want to deal with it."

Another thing Morris is not talking about openly is any wishes to play against Leftwich, who spent last season with the Bucs and was released in the offseason. The Bucs clearly could plan effectively against a quarterback they know so well, but there's a flip side to that, too, Morris said.

"Byron knows us well," Morris said. "Byron may have a couple things up his sleeve that he knows that he can use to hurt me."

Possible sellout: There's a strong possibility of the Bucs having their first sellout crowd Sunday if ticket sales remain brisk. The club wouldn't characterize how many unsold seats remain, but given the undefeated Steelers' popularity and large fan base and the Bucs' 2-0 start, there's guarded optimism at One Buc Place that Raymond James Stadium will be a full house.

"We hope our (fans) come out and support us," Morris said. "We hope we can get everybody out there and we can get the place packed. It's a great game. Two 2-0 teams."

If the game sells out by 1 p.m. Thursday — 72 hours before kickoff — the game will be televised locally. The Bucs have had two preseason contests and their regular-season opener blacked out on local television, per NFL rules.

Silent Sammie: Starting WR Sammie Stroughter finished Sunday's game without a reception for just the second time in his 17 NFL games.

Offensive coordinator Greg Olson said he wants to better incorporate Stroughter because of his ability to gain yards in the open field. Though not a speed burner, Stroughter is skilled at catching the ball in traffic and slipping tacklers.

3 for the road: With Sunday's win at Carolina, the Bucs have won three consecutive road games dating to last season's victories over Seattle and New Orleans.

It's no small feat for a team this young, considering the Bucs hadn't done that since 2003.

"If you can get wins on the road with a young team, that's a great feeling for your organization," Morris said. "You're talking about a team growing up right in front of us."

Quote of the day: "I rolled the dice a little bit and lost." — Morris on his decision to call for an all-out blitz on a second-quarter, fourth-down play on which the Panthers hit a 37-yard touchdown pass to WR Steve Smith.

There was no deep help on the play as the Bucs sent multiple blitzers and FS Tanard Jackson had to leave the middle of the field to line up against an uncovered receiver.

Stephen F. Holder can be reached at sholder@sptimes.com.

Raheem Morris, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ready for Steelers' three-headed QB monster 09/20/10 [Last modified: Monday, September 20, 2010 9:46pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Storm routs Cleveland

    Storm

    TAMPA — Alvin Ray Jackson intercepted two passes, returning one for a touchdown, and recovered two fumbles as the Storm routed Cleveland 57-27 Saturday night in its home regular-season finale at Amalie Arena.

  2. Miscue sends Rays to another stinging loss to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays gave away DJ Kitty onesies Saturday night. Then they gave away the game.

    Rays centerfielder Mallex Smith misses a drive hit by Adrian Beltre with two outs in the sixth, allowing the tying runs to score. Beltre puts Texas ahead 4-3 when he scores after two wild pitches.
  3. Rowdies shut out Charleston

    Soccer

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rowdies know a thing or two about stalemates, with five of their past 10 games ending in a draw.

    Rowdies in the first half during the game between Tampa Bay Rowdies and the Charleston Battery at Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Saturday, Jul 22, 2017.
  4. Rays journal: Former closer Sergio Romo acquired from Dodgers

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays made a move to help the bullpen Saturday night when they acquired RHP Sergio Romo, who had been designated for assignment last week by the Dodgers.

    Reliever Sergio Romo has 84 career saves, including 38 in 2013, but has struggled this season with the Dodgers, posting a 6.12 ERA in 25 innings before being designated for assignment.
  5. Dale Earnhardt Jr. backs wife's "not worth risk'' opinion on Daytona

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Dale Earnhardt Jr. on Saturday defended his wife's Twitter post — and blamed himself for putting her in a position where she believed she had to speak out and upset some of his fans.

    Amy Earnhardt worries about Dale Jr.’s concussions.