With the second preseason game quickly approaching for the Buccaneers, there are a few more players to watch. These players could be competing for a specific role or even a spot on the roster. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see how the team performs in the second contest so far this preseason, this time against the New York Jets.
QB Kyle Trask
Things certainly could have gone better for Kyle Trask against Pittsburgh. While the offensive line struggled during Trask’s time under center, he also had some throws that he would probably like to have back. With the QB competition likely coming to a close here soon, it is very important for Trask to step up in his time with the starters and prove that the competition isn’t over yet.
Another lackluster showing from Trask may be all she wrote for the quarterback competition, even if Mayfield struggles. Trask has played well in practice but as Allen Iverson would say, “we talking about practice” the actual games matter the most and right now Mayfield leads the way in that category. The pressure is on for the former second round pick to perform well on Saturday against an impressive Jets defense.
WR Trey Palmer
I mentioned Palmer on my players to watch list last week and he had an impressive showing that included a nice catch in the corner of the endzone for a touchdown. Now however, there will likely be even more eyes on the 2023 sixth round pick due to Russell Gage now being out for the season with a torn patellar tendon.
With Tampa Bay having limited cap space, they likely will take a look at their internal options first and that starts with Palmer. During the joint practice with the Jets, Palmer was one of the best players on the field and even beat Jets corner and defending defensive rookie of the year Sauce Gardner on a deep ball. We will see if Palmer is able to keep up this positive momentum he has built for himself and possibly lock him into the third receiver spot for Tampa Bay.
OL Luke Goedeke and Cody Mauch
Both Luke Goedeke and Cody Mauch had some solid moments last Friday against the Steelers but as the game went on, they began to struggle. Goedeke is transitioning to right tackle and figures to be the team’s starter at that spot when the regular season starts. As for Mauch, he is a rookie who is trying to carve out a starting role on the team as a guard.
Both players could use bounce back games that limit the penalties as well as being able to handle a very good Jets defensive line. The task won’t be easy but both guys have an opportunity to make a lot of people feel a whole lot better about the right side of the Bucs offensive line and it starts on Saturday night.
CB/S Christian Izien
The undrafted free agent out of Rutgers has impressed in this training camp. So much do that following the game against the Steelers, Todd Bowles said that Izien was the “front runner” for the starting nickel cornerback job. The Buccaneers have been searching for an answer there behind Carlton Davis and Jamel Dean and it appears they may have found it.
However, there are still two more preseason games so while Izien is the front runner, that does not mean he has the job locked up. Izien is definitely a player worth watching at the nickel spot against the Jets.
There are many more players that fans should have their eyes on this weekend, but these players are some of the top names to watch. All of these names could potentially have big roles for the Buccaneers this upcoming season so it will be curious to see if they can find or continue the success they have had up to this point.