If you missed the notes and highlights from Day One, you can check it out here!
Day Two of training camp didn’t disappoint. Despite another “shell practice” there was plenty of action to be had on the field.
From more defensive dominance to another good kicking performance, storylines were abound.
Let’s dive in.
1. Versatility on defense
Boy, when you say Todd Bowles employs a “versatile” defense, it’s definitely not a joke.
Several players saw action in various ways on Saturday. Both Carl Nassib and Anthony Nelson found themselves lined up with their hand in the dirt, in coverage, and in a two-point stance throughout practice. Rookie cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting blitzed a few times from the nickel position and nearly made a highlight-worthy one-handed interception in the end zone.
Mike Edwards found himself in the role of a single-high safety, which coincides with his comments during Saturday’s presser about playing free safety.
Overall, it was fun to see these guys lined up in multiple ways. It will certainly be worth monitoring as camp continues forward.
2. Jameis Winston wasn’t very good again, but neither was Blaine Gabbert
Unless your name is Chris Godwin or O.J. Howard, you had a hard time receiving a pass from Winston.
He didn’t get many reps in the early portions of practice for some reason, but when he started seeing more action during 11-on-11s, he wasn’t able to do much. It was more inaccurate throws than it was bad decisions, but it’s not encouraging to see your starting quarterback going through the motions for a second consecutive practice.
Gabbert, who had a good day on Friday, wasn’t very good, either. He threw two quick interceptions during 7-on-7s and was also very inaccurate.
Winston was able to drive the team inside the 20 during two-minute drills and Gabbert couldn’t even get past the 50-yard line during his possession. So, there’s that, at least.
3. OJ Howard and Chris Godwin are going to have big years
Winston found Howard again for another nice touchdown grab and Godwin ran an excellent comeback route that gave him enough space to sprint about 60 yards after the catch for what would’ve been a touchdown.
Big play here from Jameis Winston to Chris Godwin. Crowd popped for that one. pic.twitter.com/LHUaKtmr5V— PewterReport (@PewterReport) July 27, 2019
If these two can stay healthy, they are going to be major difference-makers this year.
4. The secondary was great, again
These guys are freakin’ flying around the field, man. They made play after play today, with Murphy-Bunting and Carlton Davis holding down the fort.
Murphy-Bunting had at least one interception that I saw and Davis had three pass breakups to go along with an interception.
Davis looked great and attributed much of his performance to Todd Bowles’ system.
“There are a lot of disguises, he (Bowles) is allowing us to be a lot more versatile as a corner, and he’s allowing us to show the offense different looks,” he told me after practice. “That really helps us out as corners to not allow the offense to know what (coverage) that we’re in pre-snap.”
Rookie D’cota Dixon had a very nice interception and there were plenty of others, I was just too far away to see them.
5. A good day for Matt Gay
The rookie out of Utah matched Cairos Santos’ performance on Friday, except he was able to hit two 50+ yard attempts. His lone miss was from 48 yards, which bounced off the right upright.
The kicker battle should be a good one to watch as camp continues.
6. The defensive line came to play
The defensive front took some notes from the secondary’s Day One performance and came out on fire.
There were several moments during 11-on-11s where the play would’ve constituted as a sack and there were a couple of batted balls at the line of scrimmage.
And from the looks of it - now again, this is only a shell practice - the Bucs may have figured out who will be the main lineup in their base defense. William Gholston, Vita Vea, and Ndamukong Suh have seen a lot of time with the ones and have had moments of effectiveness.
7. Mixing up coverages
The Bucs would come out with a single-high safety a few times and then would switch to a Cover 2. It’s just another example of Bowles putting his players in the right position to succeed and based off what has been happening with the defense in the past, it’s very refreshing to avoid witnessing the same defensive coverages play after play after play.....
8. Scotty Miller is FAST
He made a really nice grab with Vernon Hargreaves III draped all over him on Friday and would’ve had a deep touchdown from Gabbert if it weren’t for a severely underthrown ball.
I’m telling y’all, Hargreaves was burnt toast on this play. Miller easily had 2-3 steps on the fourth-year corner, but the lack of air under the ball allowed Hargreaves to catch up and bat the pass away.
The kid can move and I’m sure Bruce Arians and Byron Leftwich will find plenty of ways to utilize his speed in 2019.