Bruce Arians Buccaneers head coach talked with the media yesterday as the Bucs enter a new phase of training camp.
The Buccaneers have four weeks to get ready for their opener against the New Orleans Saints.
With the COVID 19 pandemic, every team has missed the majority of offseason training. The OTAs and mini-camp.
The Bucs offensive and defensive units will be able to practice against one another today for the first time during training camp.
The Bucs will be allowed to have 14 padded practices before the season opener. That is concerning to head coach Bruce Arians. “We need to get more live reps. Blocking and tackling. This game is a blocking and tackling game. Only having 14 days to block and tackle isn’t enough. I hate tackling against ourselves.”
This will be the first time in a long time that there will be special teams drills at training camp with tackling.
Arians said that all phases of special teams need work
Arians is not of a fan of live tackling. But with the cancellation of the pre-season, there is no choice. The team has to be ready to play in four weeks.
Arians said that everyone came back in great shape. He said no one came back in what he would call “out of shape.”
There have been some soft tissue injuries. Wide receiver Tyler Johnson is one of those that have missed practice. Johnson was expected to battle Scotty Miller and Justin Watson for the third wide receiver spot.
When asked what players have stood out so far in camp, wide receiver Justin Watson’s name came up. Arians said that Watson has lost ten pounds, increased his speed, and right now is the leading candidate for the third receiver spot.
Watson ran 21 MPH in a sprint at a practice session last week.
Arians said the linebackers, wide receivers, and the quarterback room have all been impressive so far in camp.
Arians was asked about his impressions of Tom Brady so far. “He’s probably the least of my worries right now. He’s where he needs to be.”
On what will be the biggest adjustment for Brady when the pads come on Arians said, “Just playing fast. Looking like everybody else but he knows what he’s doing. The speed of it is going to pick up for the first time for him. Seeing how he processes the information that he thinks he knows, and we’ll find out what he does know and doesn’t know at a much higher pace. And we haven’t gone against our defense and we have a complicated defense so it will be a lot of fun for him.”
Tristan Wirfs, the rookie offensive tackle has looked good in camp. When asked if he was worried that Wirfs wouldn’t be ready for live-action, Arians said that was not a concern.
He talked about Joe Haeg and the fact that Haeg would be able to step in and start until they felt Wirfs was ready to go.
Wirfs will go up against Saints defensive linemen Cameron Jordan week one.