The Tampa Bay Buccaneers kick off their preseason at the Cincinnati Bengals tonight, at 7:30 p.m. ET. That’ll be the debut for DeSean Jackson and O.J. Howard and the Bucs will get to test out their new offensive weapons. J.R. Sweezy, last year’s free agent offensive line pickup, will also get to take his first snaps in a Bucs uniform.
As it’s the first game of the preseason, though, we shouldn’t expect too much first-team action. Usually the starters will play two or three series, depending on how many snaps they get in each series, before the coaches turn to their backups.
Some added suspense this year: HBO’s Hard Knocks cameras will be present and filming the action, though mostly they’ll be filming the behind-the-scenes stuff. That might make things a little more spectacular, if any players think they need to stand out for the show.
The Bucs have a few injuries to deal with in this game. Defensive end Jacquies Smith is on PUP and hasn’t practiced yet this offseason. Backup cornerback Jude Adjei-Barimah has a knee injury that might keep him out for the season, but will definitely miss this game. And cornerback Brent Grimes will be out this game due to a cut on his shin, that might keep him out for the rest of the preseason, too.
Here’s everything you need to know to watch the game.
Nuts and bolts
Location: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinatti, Ohio
Game time: Friday, August 11, 7:30 p.m. ET
TV channel: WFLA-8 (Tampa), WOFL (FOX/35 - Orlando), WOGX (FOX/51 - Gainesville), WFTX (FOX/4 - Fort Myers), WTLH (FOX/49 - Tallahassee), WPMI (NBC/15 - Mobile AL). Check whether you get the game.
Online streaming: NFL Game Pass (free 7-day trial)
Announcers: Chris Myers, Ronde Barber
Enemy blog: Cincy Jungle
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