Saturday, August 11, 2012

Blount shows he is not conceding anything in Bucs pre-season opener

Things to take from Tampa Bucs pre-season opener at Miami:

LeGarrette Blount is not conceding anything to rookie Doug Martin, who everyone is predicting to be the Bucs primary running back.

Their numbers were similar with Blount running for 30 yards on seven carries and Martin picking up 21 yards also on seven rushing attempts. They both scored short yardage touchdowns and had one reception each.

Tiquan Underwood, who has been a standout receiver during training camp, continues to make a case for himself and is starting to generate some conversation that he could be an extremely vital part of the offense.

The former wideout from Rutgers (where else?) led all receivers with three catches for 76 yards, including an impressive 44 yard reception that he gathered in with two defenders draped all over him.

Quarterback Josh Freeman was efficent and safety Cody Grimm looked bad on a missed tackle on the Dolphins first drive, which didn't help his chances of making the 53 man roster.

Interception by rookie linebacker Lavonte David had to make new head coach Greg Schiano happy for many reasons bolstering belief he is the perfect WLB for the Bucs new defense.

What does it all mean?

Not really much considering there a lot of teams that finished pre-season undefeated and failed miserably when the regular season started; remember Jimmy Johnson's 1-15 first year with Dallas
or John McKay's 2-14 team in 1983 that followed undefeated pre-seasons.

The Bucs were clearly in better condition than the Dolphins and that was a factor, which might not be an advantage when the regular season starts or heads into the stretch run.

The "worst performer" award has to go to fumble prone Preston Parker (8 last year), who fumbled a punt and was guilty of personal foul after a play was whistled dead.

With his 74 yard kickoff return rookie speedster Michael Smith brings a lot of hope and Luke Stocker had a nice third down catch in traffic. Two starters in the secondary, cornerback Aqib Talib and safety Mark Barron did not play because of injuries.

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