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)

Some things you might have missed from Bucs-Eagles

Not so special teams

When you fumble the opening kickoff of the first preseason game, well, there's nowhere to hide.

Kenny Bell, who has to prove he can contribute on special teams to earn a roster spot, did just that. He was hit and stripped of the ball by the Eagles' Najee Goode and Chris Margos recovered at the Tampa Bay 18.

Three plays later, including runs by Ryan Matthews of 10 and 5 yards, the Eagles were in the end zone.

"We can sit here and talk about how I haven't played, but at the end of the day I affected the game in a very negative manner tonight," Bell said. "That's just unacceptable. I can't come out and put the rock on the ground like that. There's no excuse for it."

That wasn't the only mistake. Jude Adjei-Barimah interfered with a fair catch, costing the Bucs 15 yards. And see the next item on K Roberto Aguayo.

The good? Well, P Bryan Anger pinned the Eagles at their own 9 by forcing a fair catch. And Jacob Schum followed suit by hanging a punt that the Bucs were able to make the tackle at the 15.

Aguayo's struggles

When you use a second- and fourth-round pick on a place­kicker, even one as touted as Florida State's Roberto Aguayo, every miss will be scrutinized. When that miss comes on your first extra point from 33 yards, it stings.

Aguayo hit the right upright after a touchdown reception by Russell Shepard from Jameis Winston. Aguayo redeemed himself with a 38-yard field goal later in the game.

Pressure on QB

Tampa Bay signed Giants free agent DE Robert Ayers and used a second round pick on Eastern Kentucky DE Noah Spence to improve their pass rush. Make no mistake, those moves will pay off.

The Bucs got pressure off the edge and forced Eagles backup QB Chase Daniel to step up and into the waiting arms of another rusher.

Spence beat LT Jason Peters, and DT Clinton McDonald got the sack. DE Howard Jones came flying off the edge to collar Daniel. DT Akeem Spence drew a holding call, then sacked Daniel on the next play. DE Jacquies Smith and Jones had sacks. Not bad considering defensive coordinator Mike Smith didn't open the playbook.

The coverage was good, although rookie CB Vernon Hargreaves dropped an interception.

Shepard moves up

Russell Shepard was a quarterback at LSU and has made his living covering kicks on specials teams in the NFL. "Russell Shepard showed up in the receiver/special teams area," Koetter said. But the Bucs can't ignore how hard he plays at receiver. Shepard had three catches for 62 yards Thursday, including a 26-yard TD and another 30-yard catch and run. With Bell having a bad day, Shepard has jumped out as the receiver behind Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson and Adam Humphries.

Injuries

The Bucs have a logjam at tight end with Cameron Brate, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Luke Stocker and rookie Dan Vitale. Good thing. Veteran Brandon Myers suffered a right leg injury and did not return. RB Charles Sims (ankle) sat out. DL William Gholston did not make the trip because of a family issue.

Bucs receiver Russell Shepard evades Eagles defensive back Ed Reynolds and scores during the first half. Shepard has three catches for 62 yards as he tries to earn a spot behind Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson and Adam Humphries.

Associated Press

Bucs receiver Russell Shepard evades Eagles defensive back Ed Reynolds and scores during the first half. Shepard has three catches for 62 yards as he tries to earn a spot behind Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson and Adam Humphries.

Some things you might have missed from Bucs-Eagles 08/11/16 [Last modified: Friday, August 12, 2016 8:22am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bucs mull options at right tackle as Dotson awaits MRI

    Bucs

    Right tackle Demar Dotson, the Bucs' most experienced offensive lineman, will undergo an MRI on his injured groin Saturday, three weeks before the season opener.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneer Demar Dotson, offensive tackle, brought his coffee and breakfast to One Buc Place, 7/31/15, as he reported to training camp.
  2. For starters: Rays vs. Mariners, with another new look

    Blogs

    Having lost 11 of their last 14 games and dropping to a season-worst four games under .500 at 60-64, the Rays continue to search for ways to get out of their extended offensive slump.

    And with the M's starting LHP Ariel Miranda today, that means another new look to the lineup, which includes having struggling …

  3. Chasing 125: Bucs hope to hit rushing goal more often

    Bucs

    Ever so often, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter pulls back the curtain a bit and shares some of the stats that matter to him most as a coach.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017.
  4. Bucs-Jaguars was NFL's lowest-rated ESPN game since 2005

    Bucs

    It is just the preseason, and it is the Jaguars, but Thursday night's Bucs-Jags preseason game earned a 1.6 rating on ESPN, which is the lowest-rated preseason game (excluding NFL Network) in 12 years, according to Sports Media Watch.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston, left, talks with coach Dirk Koetter during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
  5. Roberto Aguayo, Jonathan Drouin, Tim Beckham are coming for revenge

    Bucs

    Forget the Three Tenors.

    Make it the Three Terrors.

    The 2017 Unfulfilled Expectations Tour is about to hit Tampa Bay.

    From left, former Bucs kicker Roberto Aguayo, ex-Lightning forward Jonathan Drouin and former Rays infielder Tim Beckham. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times; DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times; Getty Images]