Penn Weighs In On Nicks Loss, ReplacementOctober 31st, 2012
Sunday’s Bucs-Raiders game in Oakland is a homecoming of sorts for Donald Penn. Today, Penn told Joe he was a diehard Raiders fan for many years and recalled his devastation at a Super Bowl party in college when his beloved Silver and Black were clobbered by Chucky’s Buccaneers. Penn’s no Raiders fan anymore, but he did weigh in today on the impact of losing Carl Nicks, among other subjects. (Unfortunately, Penn had no interest in Joe’s question about his recent Smackdown with Jared Allen.)
JoeBucsFan.com: Talk about your 83 consecutive starts streak. That comes into focus a little more with all the injuries on the O-line. Does the streak mean a lot to you?
Donald Penn: It means I’m staying healthy, just trying to stay healthy and win games. That’s it.
Joe: But does it mean a lot to you?
Penn: Yeah, I’m out there with my team helping them win. Of course it means a little bit to me [personally]. But I want to play. Unfortunately for those guys, you know, stuff like that happens. But I don’t think anybody wants to be on the sideline.
Joe: You were here when backups and rookies stepped up huge after injuries on the offensive line in 2010, and the Bucs offense was a top-10 offense for the second half of that season. Do you there’s any chance the impact of losing Nicks could be a little overblown?
Penn: Losing Carl is big. He’s one of the best guards in the league. You cannot sit there and honestly say losing Carl is not going to hurt you. He’s the best guard in the league and losing him is going to be big. We’ve got to step up. Next person up, you gotta step up, whoever it’s going to be. I still don’t know. But whoever it’s going to be they gotta step it up, man. That’s how I got my start. That’s how a lot of these people get their starts in the league. You gotta come and step up. It’s going to be hard replacing Carl, just like it was hard replacing [Davin Joseph]. Definitely gonna be hard, but whoever is out there has to come to play like they are Carl.
Another reporter: You’ve played with quite a few left guards in your career.
Penn: Story of my career, ain’t it. I mean that’s how it goes. I’m going to try to help those guys, whoever it is. I’m going to try and help him as much as I can. Going to try and give him a little bit of help I can from my experience. I’m going to try and help him as much as possible. We’re going to be alright. We have to focus on the Raiders not focus on the outside stuff of who’s missing. We got to be make sure we keep our focus on the Raiders because on Sunday the Raiders aren’t going to be worried about who’s missing and who is out there and who is not.