Mike Evans Says Preseason Is Critical

June 20th, 2018

Mike Evans talks summer preparation

Plenty of established NFL starters shake their heads when thinking of preseason games.

For those guys, August is mostly about staying healthy and preparing for opening day.

Tampa Bay’s biggest-money receiver, Mike Evans, has a different mindset.

Speaking on a recent episode of the I Am Rapaport Stereo Podcast, Evans was asked whether he’d be ready to go out and play a real game as Bucs spring practices conclude.

No chance, Evans replied.

Evans said he ramps up the intensity of his workouts for three weeks later in the summer and he needs two preseason games to get set for the regular season. Most of his independent work, Evans said, is long-distance running and a lot of “explosion drills” aka sprinting with a sled tied behind him.

“I need those preseason games,” Evans said. “I need at least one or two preseason games to get right and know where I need to be at. Because receiver is one of the hardest as far as being tired and being fatigued. So you get about 50 or 60 plays as a starting receiver per game. And you gotta run those plays full speed, take the hits. Yeah, I wouldn’t be able to play next week.”

Evans is one Buccaneer consistently dedicated to excellence. This was great to hear.

There’s a divide at JoeBucsFan.com world headquarters when it comes to preseason games. One Joe thinks they’re nearly a complete waste, the other truly enjoys them and believes they’re critical to preparation, development and evaluation, considering all the restrictions on practices nowadays.

Hearing Evans explain his need for preseason got Joe hoping a hurricane doesn’t blow out the Bucs’ final two preseason games this year, which are both in Tampa. Joe can only imagine how lightning-fast the NFL would be to cancel an August game for a tropical threat.

11 Responses to “Mike Evans Says Preseason Is Critical”

  1. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    With the CBA the way it is, I agree with Evans here. However, I also agree that only 2 preseason games are needed. Not sure why the NFL doesn’t expand to an 18-game regular season and maybe have 2 bye weeks for each team.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I like the idea of an 18 game season….with two preseason games….the last preseason currently is only good to evaluate a couple of players on the bubble….by that time the rosters are set.
    I also believe that some of the rules for practice should be relaxed a bit.

    Preseason is meaningful to most players and especially meaningful to the coaches….of course, if you have a mindset that once you miss the playoffs regular season games are meaningless…I can understand why there is no desire for preseason games.

    All games are meaningful to someone but not everyone….

  3. Duke Says:


    The players union has rejected the 18 game season. The 18 game season is and has been a negotiating holy grail. The players could force a lot of concessions from the league if they wanted to but so far they just say no.

  4. Buc50 Says:

    Owners want 18 games because it means more money. Fans want 18 games because…surprise…more games. The players don’t want it because it means more wear and tear on their bodies which means shorter career. As much as I love football, I’m with the players on this.

  5. Reality_43 Says:

    With the current Survival of the fittest seasons we have, I really can’t imagine 18 games. I can see Tampa with a sure fire playoff scenario and we lose RoJo or Mike Evans in game 17 or 18. I am for 2 preseason games only though and starting the season earlier. A lot of wasted time in July IMO

  6. Pickgrin Says:

    Seems to me that a compromise could be worked out.

    If the league proposed replacing 2 Preseason games with regular season games – and in exchange the league would no longer test nor suspend for cannabis use – I bet a vast majority of the players would vote YES!

    Just a hunch.

    One thing is for sure – the NFL should NOT be charging full price for pre-season games and teams should NOT force the full cost of these “exhibition” games into their season ticket packages!

  7. Not there yet Says:

    Winston is the one who needs more snaps in preseason. He started making his boneheaded plays in the preseason and it continues the entire season

  8. 813bucboi Says:

    i agree with mike…..


  9. LouisFriend Says:

    @Pickgrin – If people stop buying NFL season tickets like they do right now, you can bet teams will lower prices. Not until then.

    Preseason could and should be brought down to 3 games instead of 4. The last game has been turned into a scrimmage of 2nd to 4th string players that very few fans care enough about to show up for or watch on TV. Even the networks don’t show them for that reason, which makes them easily expendable for the current broadcast contracts the NFL has.

    An extra bye week, which would be welcomed by the players and keep the NFL season at 18 weeks for increased broadcasting potential (and more $$ for the NFL) would fill in the overall season length difference. Win-win for everyone involved.

  10. LouisFriend Says:

    Correction to above – adding another bye week would increase the number of regular season weeks from 17 to 18, giving the NFL and extra week of broadcasting regular season games.

  11. SOEbuc Says:

    SOEbuc can only imagine how lightning-fast the NFL would be to cancel an August game for a light drizzle.