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)

Special teams could help Michael Smith make Tampa Bay Buccaneers' roster

TAMPA — Bucs rookie RB/KR Michael Smith says he has seen the replay of his 74-yard punt return Friday night in Miami and was excited to make a splash in his NFL debut.

"I thought I was gone," he said.

The seventh-round pick took the ball 2 yards in the end zone, raced up the middle and broke three tackles before getting caught from behind near the Dolphins' 30-yard line. He displayed the speed and strength that helped him set rushing records at Utah State.

Though Smith, 5 feet 9, 205 pounds, is in the mix as a reserve running back, special teams — specifically returns — can help him make the roster.

"I can do running back, do special teams — I play every special team except field goal," Smith said. "I'm just working hard to show my speed, my strength, my effort, that I want to be here."

HIGH PRAISE: WR Vincent Jackson was among a constellation of offensive stars with the Chargers in recent years. He believes the lesser-known Bucs are just as talented.

Jackson said QB Josh Freeman is among the top five at his position in the NFL.

"We were a little more flashy as far as the names go (in San Diego), but I think we're just as talented here all the way across the board." Jackson said. "We have tight ends, running backs and obviously, Josh Freeman, and he's a quarterback I think should be mentioned among the top five in the league."

ON THE LINE: After a full-team drill featuring a fumble by Doug Martin and assorted penalties, coach Greg Schiano implored his players to be sharper with a little, um, encouragement.

"Two fumbles and a holding penalty — start the period over," Schiano yelled. "There's one way here; we're not going to compromise."

When the miscues continued, Schiano stopped practice, took the team to midfield and delivered another tongue-lashing.

It was just the second time during training camp that Schiano has used such measures.

"Sometimes that happens," Schiano said. "If you're a little sloppy, you stop it and get it back on the right path."

TICKET TIME: The Bucs announced they'll have a half-season ticket; fans can buy one of two five-game plans. Each option includes one preseason game. The prices are between the cost of a single-game ticket and a full-season pass.

MEDICAL MATTERS: TE Luke Stocker left practice early. Schiano didn't know the nature of the injury, only saying he didn't feel well. … Schiano said OT Donald Penn (calf) is progressing, but won't play until he's ready. Schiano said if there were a regular-season game this week, Penn might play. … S Mark Barron, who missed Friday's game due to a toe injury, practiced, as did TE Dallas Clark and CB Aqib Talib.

Times staff writers Rick Stroud and Stephen F. Holder contributed to this report. Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith@tampabay.com.

Special teams could help Michael Smith make Tampa Bay Buccaneers' roster 08/13/12 [Last modified: Monday, August 13, 2012 6:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Young girl injured by 105 mph foul at Yankee Stadium renews call for more netting

    Ml

    NEW YORK — A young girl at Yankee Stadium was injured by a 105 mph foul ball off the bat of Todd Frazier during Wednesday's game against Minnesota, leading some players to call for protective netting to be extended.

    Baseball fans reacts as a young girl is tended to before she is carried out of the seating area after being hit by a line drive in the fifth inning of a baseball game between the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, at Yankee Stadium in New York. [Associated Press]
  2. Clearwater enjoys view from the top

    Footballpreps

    CLEARWATER — The offense still has a familiar feel. Short passes become big gains. Linemen drive their opponents in reverse, forcefully and repeatedly. Runs along the sideline continue to leave defenders breathlessly behind.

    The outcomes are similar, too.

    Clearwater’s Brandon Gary, from left, Jacob Day, Damon Dennis and Jarius Williams celebrate a turnover recovery deep in Countryside High territory during the second quarter of Monday’s game at Countryside. Clearwater won 35-14.
  3. Rick and Tom podcast: Lots of questions for college football teams in Florida

    College

    In just three weeks, the state of college football in Florida went from high expectations to lots of questions at USF with slow starts, Florida with no offense and Florida State losing quarterback Deondre …

    Despite slow starts, quarterback Quinton Flowers and USF take a 3-0 record into tonight's game against Temple. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]
  4. Morning after: Takeaways from Lightning exhibition

    Blogs

    For the Lightning, there was a lot to like in Wednesday's 4-3 exhibition win in Carolina.

    The Lightning's Erik Cernak, left, congratulates Adam Erne (73) following Erne's goal against the Carolina Hurricanes.
  5. Cesar Puello slides home to score off of a bunt single by Peter Bourjos during the second inning.