The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will close off the second weekend of preseason games on Monday Night Football, taking on the Cincinnati Bengals in Jameis Winston's first ever home game at Raymond James Stadium. The Bucs would like to win in front of their home crowd for the first time since 2013, but it'll be even more important for the team's key players to continue to develop.
Here are some of the players to keep an eye on during the game.
Jameis Winston, QB
This one's easy, of course. Everyone wants to see what the Bucs' new quarterback is going to do after a middling outing in his first preseason game. Last week, Winston struggled with accuracy early on, and made one particularly bad throw resulting in an interception. He did handle pressure well, although his throwing motion returned to the slightly elongated form we'd seen in college. Overall, it was an inconsistent performance with some big throws that showed off his potential.
This game, Winston is going to have to show that the accuracy at the start of last game were simply the result of rookie jitters. That's the main thing I'd look for -- bad decisions and resulting interceptions are going to happen with a risk-taking quarterback like Winston, but inaccurate throws can be eliminated a lot more easily.
Ali Marpet, G
Marpet didn't start in the first preseason game, and showed some technique issues when he did get on the field. Despite that, both he and rookie left tackle Donovan Smith have run with the starters throughout training camp and should play most of the first half against the Bengals, too. Marpet looked best in the running game, when he could simply drive players down the field, but he needs to adjust to pass-blocking at the NFL level. Keep an eye on his performance there -- especially given the fact that he'll line up against Geno Atkins quite a few times.
There's also left tackle Donovan Smith, who looked pretty good in his first outing even though he allowed a sack on his first snap. He didn't really get beat the rest of the game. If he can continue that streak on Monday night, the Bucs may have found a quality left tackle.
Kenny Bell, WR
The Bucs' fifth-round pick showed up as a kick returner against the Vikings, but didn't do much as a receiver that game. That should change this week, as the receiver's been a standout in training camp and has the skills to make an impact as an outside receiver early in his career. His size and speed are valuable assets, and his wide catching radius makes him an easy target for Winston and Mike Glennon.
Timothy Wright, TE
The Bucs are having trouble at the tight end position once again. Austin Seferian-Jenkins looks explosive and is getting open, but he hasn't been making tough catches -- or any catches, for that matter. Luke Stocker's really only a blocker and Brandon Myers is a sluggish veteran who can technically do everything, but isn't actually good at anything. That would leave some room for Tim Wright to make the roster -- you know, the guy who exploded onto the scene as a rookie in 2013, regularly making linebackers and safeties look silly. But Wright really hasn't done much this offseason, and didn't show up at all in the team's first preseason game. If he wants to make the roster, that's going to have to change.
Kaelin Clay, WR/PR
The Bucs' sixth-round rookie was pretty much a disaster last week. His two punt returns went for negative yardage, while he couldn't get on the field on offense. That's not the way to make a roster, and he's going to have to show up as a return specialist really quickly if he wants to keep his job.