Day 1 Rookie Minicamp ObservationsMay 16th, 2014
It’s Joe’s always popular practice notes and observations, this time from opening day of Bucs rookie minicamp/tryout camp at One Buc Palace.
Fifty young hopefuls, from draft picks to second-year players like former Florida State defensive tackle Everett Dawkins, a seventh-round pick of the Cowboys last year, took to the sunny, breezy fields.
Here are some of the sights:
*Running back Jeremy Smith of Oklahoma State gets away with a push-off on former Rutgers linebacker/long snapper Andrew DePaola.
*Jump ball! Mike Evans catches a lazy pass from Brett Smith that is over his head to his left, leaps and hauls ball in. Dunkaneers.
*Once again, those chrome helmets really pop in the glaring sun. Better bring your shades to home games. You will need them.
*A Bucs assistant coach is working individually with tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins on proper footwork during blocking drills, though the second-round pick is limited after foot surgery this winter.
*Fullback David Sims of Georgia Tech hauls in a short pass amid traffic.
*Leader extraordinaire QB Josh McCown takes to the field in shorts and a t-shirt to watch the young troops. Mike Glennon, along with nearly all Buccaneers, was not seen. Veteran wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins sat down with Joe to chat, and get an update on practice happenings.
*Former Gators receiver, rookie Solomon Patton, drops a pass.
*Nice hands by Jeremy Smith, who later skies for a pass in the right flat and seamlessly squares his shoulders and cuts up field.
*Wyoming QB Brett Smith is chased out of the pocket and flushed left during 7-on-7 drills as he was unable to find an open receiver. He took the “sack.”
*Hey, stop trying to trick Joe. There are two guys wearing No. 39 on the field. The defensive “39,” is former “Cal” cornerback Marc Anthony. He had a nice pass breakup on Taylor Sloat. But Sloat got revenge quickly on safety hopeful Jacquez Jenkins of USF. Sloat then was able to grab a pass while being triple-covered over the middle. Nice hands on this kid.
*Third-round pick Charles Sims in left flat. He is much bigger than Joe expected.
*Brendan Bigelow, a running back from Cal, waits for a floater of a pass from Smith to fall in his arms along the left sideline for a touchdown.
*Even on short catches, it is clear Evans is on a different playing level than the rest of rookies. Even a guy walking around with a white cane can see this. Joe felt for SMU cornerback hopeful Chris Parks.
*Punt adventures were on display. Rookie sixth-round pick Robert Herron dropped two. Patton was tentative and looked a little lost, not attempting a catch on two punts. Lovie Smith said the wind was as tough as it might get for Tampa, but it was clear these two guys aren’t polished punt return prospects.
*Joe’s already written about the noodle arm of QB Brett Smith. No threat to make the roster.
Stick with Joe through the weekend for all kinds of stuff out of minicamp.