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Tampa Bay Buccaneers news and notes: Gerald McCoy faces a favorite; Anthony Gaitor makes his case

McCoy meets one of his favorites

DT Gerald McCoy openly admits he watched Patriots QB Tom Brady in amazement as an adolescent. Now, with McCoy two days from making his preseason debut against Brady's team at Raymond James Stadium, the Bucs' 2010 first-round pick is looking forward to the chance.

"Who doesn't want an opportunity to go against a guy like that," said McCoy, above left. "I'm a fan of his. But that's until Thursday comes. You grow up and see guys like that. It's like, 'Man, that's Tom Brady. He's winning Super Bowls.' Now, he's still there and I have an opportunity to chase him down."

Brady, above right, didn't play in the Pats' preseason opener, but seems more likely to play against Tampa Bay.

"I'm hoping he's out there," McCoy said. "It would be great. Even if I don't get to him, I can tell my kids, 'Look, he's a Hall of Famer. I played against him.' "

CB Gaitor making his case known

Seventh-round draft pick Anthony Gaitor hasn't exactly secured a place on the roster yet, but his performance Friday night at Kansas City was quite the statement.

With a tackle, sack and pass deflection against the Chiefs, the cornerback from Florida International has Morris' attention — for more than one reason.

"I don't think anybody had more fun than Gaitor," Morris said.

"He was so hyped up, he got tired jumping over the pile, knocked the wind out of himself and had to come out of the game for a few plays. He is a ball to coach."

Morris is impressed by Gaitor's smarts, which have allowed him to take on learning two positions: The slot cornerback position made famous by Ronde Barber and the conventional outside cornerback.

"He's fun. He's smart," Morris said. "He's probably one of our only rookies learning two positions."

Injury report

CBs Aqib Talib and Myron Lewis remained sidelined with hamstring injuries, but coach Raheem Morris cautioned against overreacting.

Neither played Friday, but Morris called Talib "literally day to day." Indications are that Lewis is on a slightly longer timetable, though nothing specific was offered by the team.

DT Roy Miller injured his knee on the first series of Friday's game and is not expected to play against the Patriots, according to Morris. DT Brian Price (pelvis) was limited to individual drills Monday and did not join the team during contact periods; he seems a long shot to play this week.

Transactions

TE Jose Cruz, an undrafted free agent from Syracuse, was released to make room for CB Ashton Youboty on the 90-man roster.

Stephen F. Holder, Times staff writer

Preseason schedule

Thursday: Patriots, 7:30, Ch. 10 *

Aug. 27: Dolphins, 7:30, Ch. 10 *

Sept. 1: at Redskins, 7:30, Ch. 10

* Broadcast blacked out

Number of the day

72

Players on the 90-man roster age 25 or younger

Preseason

Thursday: Patriots, 7:30, Ch. 10 *

Aug. 27: Dolphins, 7:30, Ch. 10 *

Sept. 1: at Redskins, 7:30, Ch. 10

Regular season

Sept. 11: Lions, 1, Ch. 13 *

Sept. 18: at Vikings, 1, Ch. 13

Sept. 25: Falcons, 4:15, Ch. 13 *

Oct. 3: Colts, 8:30, ESPN, Ch. 28 *

Oct. 9: at 49ers, 4, Ch. 13

Oct. 16: Saints, 4:15, Ch. 13 *

Oct. 23: Bears (London), 1, Ch. 13

Nov. 6: at Saints, 1, Ch. 13

Nov. 13: Texans, 1, Ch. 10 *

Nov. 20: at Packers, 1, Ch. 13

Nov. 27: at Titans, 1, Ch. 13

Dec. 4: Panthers, 1, Ch. 13 *

Dec. 11: at Jaguars, 1, Ch. 13

Dec. 17: Cowboys, 8:20, NFL Network, TBD *

Dec. 24: at Panthers, 1, Ch. 13

Jan. 1: at Falcons, 1, Ch. 13

* Broadcast subject to NFL blackout rules

Quote of the day

"That's a core belief for us. It's ingrained in us all. We're going to be more physically-conditioned than our opponent. That's part of forcing your will on your opponent."

Coach Raheem Morris

Tampa Bay Buccaneers news and notes: Gerald McCoy faces a favorite; Anthony Gaitor makes his case 08/15/11 [Last modified: Monday, August 15, 2011 11:17pm]
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