For the Tampa Bay Buccaneers players who are currently battling for a roster spot, your final chance to impress the coaches is in two days.
Head coach Bruce Arians and his staff will be busy in the coming days as they prep for some closing evaluations on several players as they head to Dallas for Week 4 of the preseason. And there are several positions left with question marks.
“The one thing about this last game – you always want to try to keep it as simple as possible so they can play fast and show you that they’re real athletic,” Arians said about what he wants to see out of his players Thursday. “You don’t want them out there thinking. That part of it, you just want to see good one-on-one stuff all night and try to be as proficient as possible. Special teams, that’s where most jobs are going to be won in this game – somebody that covers a kick, maybe knocks a ball loose, does something big that gets one of those last 10 spots or maybe one of those 10 practice squad spots. There’s a bunch of spots up.”
Arians would add that of those 10 spots, some will be for the active roster.
“Yeah, that’s probably the number when you’re talking about the sixth lineman, fifth backer, fifth corner, fourth corner – when you’re going around and who’s on [special] teams, there’s about 10 and then there’s 10 practice squad spots for the guys that clear waivers.”
Although spots are limited, there appears to be a young guy battling for a roster spot that hasn’t done much due to a blown ACL last season but has caught the attention of the head coach. That player is linebacker Jack Cichy who Arians is impressed with.
“How tough he is and how much the game means to him. He’s one of those guys – he never shuts up,” Arians said of Cichy. “Even when he’s not [on the field], he’s hollering out there to somebody else, ‘Hey, do this,’ ‘Do that,’ ‘Great job.’ He’s turned into one of my favorites.”
As for the rest of the players battling for roster spots, Arians has a message on how they can try to win the coach over.
“Play your ass off Thursday night. Make me [so I] can’t cut you.”