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Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Jeff Faine: Young team needs long offseason practices

TAMPA — Bucs C Jeff Faine believes the two-hour "voluntary" practice sessions this offseason are necessary to help develop a young team, especially QB Josh Freeman.

"I think for this team, yes, it's necessary," Faine said. "It's a young team. Two years ago? Nah. I think it's just the different makeup of the team. Some guys need it. Some guys need the looks, especially (Freeman) needs all the looks he can see. I think it's important, and this is just part of it."

Many teams limit the sessions, called organized team activities, to about 45 minutes or an hour each day. The Bucs conduct two-hour noncontact practices and have been focusing on the passing game, red-zone work and the two-minute offense.

The Bucs pushed 11 of their 14 allowed sessions to June so most of their nine draft picks and college free agents could participate.

A year ago, the Bucs' offensive line focused on honing its zone-blocking scheme under then-offensive coordinator Jeff Jagodzinski. This year there will be more of a mix under Greg Olson.

"I think (the scheme is) going to be a little more balanced," Faine said. "Some teams you play against, some defenses that you play against, one (scheme) works better than the other."

WILLIAMS FOCUSED: WR Mike Williams is playing with a clear head after becoming the first of the 2010 draft picks to sign.

Williams, a fourth-round pick from Syracuse, signed a four-year contract believed to be worth $3.1-million.

"I've always played for the love of the game and just the fun of the game," Williams said. "I was happy to just get that out of the way and do what I do best.

"It was very important for me. That's something we had to do, so we knocked that out, and now it's football time."

Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Jeff Faine: Young team needs long offseason practices 06/09/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 9, 2010 10:27pm]
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