Category: Tampa Bay Buccaneer

A Boy Diagnosed With Cancer Gets To Announce First-Round Pick For Ravens

NFL, the National Football League, is always using its draft phase of the games to raise awareness of issues and favor individuals with health problems. This event happened in April 2017, in a draft announcement of football that got its draft phase shared with a 14-years old boy named T.J. Owuanibe, who was diagnosed with brain cancer.

 

 

He always dreamed of sharing the stage with his favorite NFL team, the Ravens. It all began when the young boy told the Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic that he always wanted to meet the team and participate in the announcement of their draft picks.

 

 

And so his wish came true.

 

 

The boy is in the eighth grade of the McDonogh School in, Baltimore, the same school he was in when he got diagnosed with the disease two years ago.

 

 

The kid happily steps in the stage as the announcer of the Baltimore Ravens’ selection for this year of football.

 

 

Standing next to no one else than Commissioner Roger Goodell, the boy, dressed up in a gray suit, was smiling. He knew that his dream came true because of his dedication in perceiving his long-lasting dream.

 

 

When it came to Baltimore to announce its next picks, on a Thursday night it was published that they would take Alabama cornerback Marlon Humphrey with the 16th pick. T.J. would not miss his opportunity to contact the team and try to fulfill his dream.

 

 

And it happened.

 

 

“For him, football is the one thing that makes him excited,” said T.J.’s mother, Chioma, who gave an interview about the kid’s reaction when Coach John Harbaugh informed T.J. that the team would allow him to announce the team’s first round of selection. His mom concluded that the Ravens were part of his life already, and finally meeting his wish, in the hardest period of his life, was a miracle.

 

 

For more information about the first-round pick and the announcement, please read http://www.baynews9.com/content/news/baynews9/sports/article.html/content/news/articles/ap/2017/04/27/Young_cancer_survivor_gets_his_wish_at_NFL_draft.html, a website that specifically covers news from Florida and Tampa.

 

 

The biggest sports league in North America accounted for a significant audience when T.J. had the honor to get up on the stage and announce the first-round pick.

 

 

Nothing would’ve been possible though, without the help of a non-profitable organization named the Casey Cares Foundation.

 

 

  1. had the honor of meeting the coaching staff, a few of the players, and see the training camp with his own eyes.

 

 

Tampa Bay Gets Juices Flowing With O.J. Howard

It looks like the Buccaneers found some great refreshment with their 19th draft pick when they selected Alabama tight end O.J. Howard.

 

The 6’6″, 251-lb. Howard is described by nfl.com as an “exceptionally gifted athlete” nfl.com. Howard can put a lot of pressure on a defense. He has speed and acceleration and can create separation. He can catch balls that are badly thrown or contested and can line up anywhere on the field. He’s a huge target and also proficient at blocking. Whew!

 

Because he’s a total package, Howard was expected to be the rare tight end who went in the first 10 picks. The Bucs were a little surprised that he lasted until number 19 and were considering a trade up to get him. But they decided to see how it went, and their patience paid off. GM Jason Licht said, “We’re beyond excited about him.” He added that, “it was a little bit of a pipe dream…I have a feeling a lot of teams were probably after him.”

 

In fact, the Bucs got pretty nervous between the 11th and 18th picks, expecting Howard to get plucked from their grasp any time. There was a collective sigh of relief after the Titans made the 18th pick. Licht explained how the Buccaneers determine which players to focus on. “We don’t set our boards based on the mocks,” he said. “Before the draft we have a lot of meetings where we say, ‘Which players have to be there you’re not even going to consider trading back? Which players would you consider moving up for?’…He was obviously one guy that we weren’t going to trade back for” www.buccaneers.com.

 

Howard was a big playmaker at Alabama, especially in 2015, where he caught 38 passes for 602 yards. In the 2016 national championship game, he was named Offensive MVP, with 208 receiving yards and two touchdowns on five catches. Even so, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter thinks he was underused by the Tide.

 

But not now, since, along with Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson and Cameron Brate, the Bucs have some O.J. to pour on the yardage.

 

Bucs Beef Up Offense in 2017 Draft:

Jameis Winston certainly performed better in his sophomore season, connecting for 28 touchdown passes, 12 of them to Mike Evans. That helped Tampa Bay to a 9-7 record, its first season above .500 since 2010. However, they still missed out on the playoffs, as they have every year since 2007.

 

Despite the success of Winston and Evans, the Buccaneers offense overall was lackluster. Their 354 points scored was the fewest in the NFC South Division. Only five other teams in the entire conference put up fewer points in 2016.

 

But Tampa Bay coaches and staff believe this year’s draft helped them bring in the players needed to give their offense a much needed boost. It all starts with the team’s first selection (19th pick overall) in O.J. Howard. While Alabama came up short in the national title game against Clemson, Howard did all he could for the Tide cause with 106 receiving yards and a touchdown. Considered the top tight end in this year’s draft, he is not only an excellent receiver, but a top notch blocker.

 

Another target Tampa Bay got for Winston is Penn State receiver Chris Goodwin in the Third Round (84th overall). Some might wonder how other teams passed over him as he garnered over 2,400 receiving yards in three seasons with the Nittany Lions along with 18 touchdowns, 11 of them last season. Bucs coaches like Goodwin’s maturity and the way he can adjust on the fly. He also shined in every bowl game he played in for Penn State, with more than 130 yards in the 2014 Pinstriple Bowl, the 2015 TaxSlayer Bowl, and last season’s Rose Bowl, where he recorded 187 receiving yards and two touchdowns against USC.

 

With their Fifth Round pick, the Bucs got a running back, they hope, can compliment Doug Martin. Jeremy McNichols of Boise State scored 43 rushing touchdowns over the past two seasons. Along with a great ground game, McNichols also has great hands, reeling in ten touchdown catches and recording 934 receiving yards in two seasons for Boise State.

 

Should all these picks pan out, coupled with quality returners in the backfield, the Bucs could have one of the top offenses in the league.

 

 

 

Bucs Address Some Team Needs in Draft’s First Three Rounds

If the Tampa Bay Bucs want to springboard into the playoffs are a 9-7 campaign in 2016, the franchise needed to address some major needs.

 

So far, through two days and the first three rounds, the Bucs have used four picks to fill in some areas, but other positional need spots are still open and the Bucs don’t have many chances in the way of filling them.

 

With Jameis Winston throwing for over 4,000 yards and 28 touchdowns, the team is seems to have its quarterback. However, it could be on the other side of the ball where the most pressing need. Some say that safety could be the biggest need for Tampa Bay.

 

Tampa Bay was fortunate on the first day when Alabama tight end O.J. Howard fell into their laps with 19th overall selection in the first round. Howard was considered by many as a top-10 pick, so the Bucs got very good value and filled a need. Howard is said to be the most complete tight end who can block as well as catch passes, then show off his 4.51 speed.

 

On the second day, Tampa Bay picked Texas A&M safety Justin Evans in the second round with the 50th overall pick. Evans is better in run support, though he can drop back into coverage well enough. Given the incredible depth at defensive back, the Bucs were wise to make sure they at least got one safety to help shore up the secondary.

 

In the third round, Tampa Bay had two picks and went with one on either side of the ball. Penn State receiver Chris Godwin was the 84th selection and brings in 4.42 speed as well as the ability to make plays (11 touchdown catches in 2016). However, then Tampa Bay sent a 4th-rounder and a 6th-rounder to the Jets to move up to No. 107 and the last pick of the day. The choice was LSU linebacker Kendell Beckwith who is recovering from an ACL injury. When healthy, Beckwith is versatile enough to help out both at inside and outside linebacker.

 

However, the trade meant that Tampa enters the final day with only two more picks: a fifth-rounder (No. 162) and a seventh-rounder (No. 237). There are still needs at running back, cornerback, and guard.

 

The Field Goal Kick That Landed a Win for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Monday’s night NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers started with both teams holding one and three records. By fourth quarter Business Insider reported the teams were tied 14 and 14 until Buccaneers’ rookie kicker, Roberto Aquayo kicked the football straight down the middle of the field landing a win for the team. It was the best play performance for the rookie who had missed two previous kicks in the second quarter and fourth quarter.

 

 

Aquayo never missed a kick while playing for Florida State University inside 40 yards, but is struggling on the Bucs team. His struggles turned into victory after his team players provided him support on the sidelines right before the winning kick of the day. Thus far Aquayo has a field goal kicking record of four of eight for the season.

 

 

Preseason was difficult for the rookie kicker in the beginning after missing two field goals and an effort to kick the extra point field goal in the first and second week. By the end of the final two weeks of preseason, Aquayo was five for five. He finished the preseason with eight of 10 field goals.

 

 

Buccaneers coach, Dirk Koetter spoke to ESPN and said that he has concerns about the rookie kicker when most kickers are able to make goals inside of 50 yards when the weather permits. The first missing kick Aquayo made was during the second quarter which was 33 yards out. This happened at Carolina 30-yard line after Russell Shepard recovered Ted Ginn Jr.’s punt. The second missed field goal happened in the fourth quarter after Brent Grimes made a touchdown interception in the end-zone.

 

 

Coach Koetter applauded the Buccaneers team players who encouraged Roberto Aquayo on the sideline before the field goal kick. The team support and power actions of defense to get the ball back and Jameis Winston leading the offense gave him another opportunity to make a field goal. Koetter continues to have concerns about the rookie after a loss to Los Angeles Rams two weeks ago. He missed a 41-yard field goal which would have given the Buccaneers the lead. Koetter is pleased with the overall performance of the NFL team and the winning field goal.

 

 

Four Tampa Bay Buccaneer Players Receive Injuries After Last Week’s Game Against the Cardinals

Last Sunday’s NFL football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ad Arizona Cardinals left Buccaneer players Doug Martin, Robert Ayers, Cecil Shorts III and Donovan Smith with injuries. During the first half of last week’s game, Martin injured his right hamstring which will leave him sidelined over a three-week period. Other players received bodily injuries, including Ayers and Stocker ankle injuries and Smith injury to his hip. The players maybe injured but the Buccaneers Coach Dirk Koetter is confident in the team and believes they have what it takes to win this Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Rams. Yahoo Sports reported Charles Sims and Jacquizz Rodgers are expected to replace Martin for the next three weeks or until he fully recovers.

 

 

Rodgers showcased his skills during the game against the Cardinals by breaking a 24-yard run and finishing with 29 yards on two efforts, the best for the Buccaneers. Sims also proved his abilities by rushing 529 yards and gaining another 561 yards on 51 receptions that gave the team a huge push. The Buccaneers worked hard the whole week to face the Rams on Sunday. Coach Koetter admitted he has some concerns involving offense now that Martin is sidelined for a few weeks.

 

 

Doug Martin received recognition as the NFL’s second leading rusher when he ran for 1,402 yards and scored six touchdowns. He recently signed a five-year contract in the amount of $35 million during off-season. While Martin heals from his hamstring injuries, it is obvious the Buccaneers may encounter some challenges during this Sunday’s game against the Rams.

 

 

Rodgers and Sims had to prove themselves during practice, but who will officially replace Martin is unknown. Coach Koetter is careful about disclosing information about the upcoming game against the Rams. The Buccaneers and Rams share the same record with one win and one lost each.

 

 

The Buccaneers and Coach Dirk Koetter are self-assured the team players are prepared to overcome challenges when playing against the Rams. The injuries of the leading rusher, defensive end, receiver and left tackle players will not leave the Bucs helpless. Other team players have their backs and plan to defeat the Rams this Sunday’s game.

 

 

Tampa Bay Courting Adrian Peterson

During the 2016 NFL season, one of the most intriguing teams in the league were the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After a strong 2015 season, they seemed well-positioned to take the next step forward and make the NFL playoffs. However, during the 2017 NFL season, the Buccaneers were not quite able to get over the hump as they finished with 9 wins and 7 losses and finished just outside of the playoff hunt.

 

Now that the season is over, the Buccaneers have the chance to reflect on their team needs and find ways to improve. One weakness that the Buccaneers had was a lack of wide receiver depth. The team quickly made an effort to confront this issue when they signed DeSean Jackson, who is a former Pro Bowl wide receiver. The team is also hoping to fill in some additional holes on the roster during the upcoming NFL draft.

 

While the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have already made some big moves and have a lot of plans for the NFL draft, there are rumors out there that they could be making another big move (http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000796316/article/adrian-peterson-jameis-workout-intrigues-bucs-coach). According to some experts, the Buccaneers could be courting Adrian Peterson. Peterson is a future Hall of Fame running back who has spent his whole career with the Minnesota Vikings. However, in two of the past three seasons he has been very unproductive due to either suspension or injury.

 

A lot of the rumors around Peterson circulate around the fact that Peterson and star quarterback, Jameis Winston, were recently spotted working out together. While nothing is formal about the relationship yet, many believe that the addition of Peterson could be very productive for the team. With Doug Martin already in the backfield, it could give the team a chance to take a lot of pressure off the quarterback, which could greatly open up the passing game.

 

Rays Ready to Climb Out of AL East Basement:

Is a playoff appearance in the cards for the Tampa Bay Rays in 2017? Perhaps a return to the World Series?

 

In all likelihood, the answer to both questions is no. The American League East looks to remain one of baseball’s toughest divisions with Boston, Toronto, and Baltimore expected to battle for the title. But even without a trip to the post-season, there are reasons for Rays fans to be excited. The team appears on the cusp of rebounding from its dismal 2016. One indication for hope is the performance of Chris Archer this spring. The opening day starter went 1-0 with a 1.98 ERA, 17 strikeouts, and four walks in 13 innings in the pre-season. Any Rays resurgence will hinge on Archer recovering from a 19-loss season in 2016. Despite a 4.91 ERA in the spring, look for Jake Odorizzi to be a big factor in the starting rotation. Last year he was Tampa Bay’s best starter at 10-6 with a 3.69 ERA and 166 strikeouts. If he ups those numbers in 2017, the Rays will have a solid one-two punch in the rotation. Your text to link…

 

Offensively, the Rays will still have Evan Longoria banging out hits and driving in runs. Despite a .239 spring batting average, the All-Star third baseman is always good for 20-30 home runs and 80-90 RBIs a year. If Tampa Bay can get more production out of Logan Morrison and Kevin Kiermaier, they could have a pretty potent lineup. The big key that will be missing for much of the first half is Wilson Ramos. The former Washington catcher who had 22 home runs and 80 RBIs last year is on the disabled list with a knee injury. He is expected to return in June. In his place is former San Diego catcher Derek Norris, who has done well at the plate this spring.

 

There may be no playoffs for Tampa Bay this year, but if they can play .500 ball, it will be a step in the right direction.

 

 

Adrian Peterson Has Workout With Tampa Bay QB Winston

Adrian Peterson was a star for the first 10 years of his NFL career with the Minnesota Vikings. During that time, he established himself as the best running back of his generation. However, the Vikings opted not to pick up Peterson’s hefty $18 million option for the 2017 season. This immediately made Peterson a free agent for the first time in his career. Many people are wondering which team he will sign with. This is why the national sports media went into a frenzy when they learned that Peterson has been working out with Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jaemis Winston.

 

There are only a handful of teams that have the right schematic fit for Peterson at the present time. Tampa Bay is one of those teams. The Buccaneers management has said very little about the possibility of the superstar running back signing with them. Tampa Bay head coach Dirk Koetter said that he was very surprised to find out that Peterson and Winston had been working out together. However, he downplayed the significance of it. Koetter said that it does not mean that Peterson signing with the Buccaneers is imminent. He also was skeptical if the Tampa Bay ownership would be willing to pay the large salary that Peterson is looking for.

 

The reality is that Peterson is 32 years old and coming off a season that saw him only play in three games because of an injury. NFL history shows that the productivity of running backs goes down significantly after their 30th birthday. Therefore, Peterson’s age and recent history of injuries make him a very big financial risk for the team that eventually ends up signing him. Tampa Bay’s current running back is Doug Martin. However, he will be suspended for the first four games of the 2017 season. Therefore, there have been rumors about the Buccaneers signing Peterson as a very big upgrade at that position.

 

Peterson has said that he likes working out with Winston because they both keep the same pace. However, it remains to be seen if the two Pro Bowl players will ever wear the same uniform.

 

 

 

The Field Goal Kick That Landed a Win for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Monday’s night NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers started with both teams holding one and three records. By fourth quarter Business Insider reported the teams were tied 14 and 14 until Buccaneers’ rookie kicker, Roberto Aquayo kicked the football straight down the middle of the field landing a win for the team. It was the best play performance for the rookie who had missed two previous kicks in the second quarter and fourth quarter.

 

 

Aquayo never missed a kick while playing for Florida State University inside 40 yards, but is struggling on the Bucs team. His struggles turned into victory after his team players provided him support on the sidelines right before the winning kick of the day. Thus far Aquayo has a field goal kicking record of four of eight for the season.

 

 

Preseason was difficult for the rookie kicker in the beginning after missing two field goals and an effort to kick the extra point field goal in the first and second week. By the end of the final two weeks of preseason, Aquayo was five for five. He finished the preseason with eight of 10 field goals.

 

 

Buccaneers coach, Dirk Koetter spoke to ESPN and said that he has concerns about the rookie kicker when most kickers are able to make goals inside of 50 yards when the weather permits. The first missing kick Aquayo made was during the second quarter which was 33 yards out. This happened at Carolina 30-yard line after Russell Shepard recovered Ted Ginn Jr.’s punt. The second missed field goal happened in the fourth quarter after Brent Grimes made a touchdown interception in the end-zone.

 

 

Coach Koetter applauded the Buccaneers team players who encouraged Roberto Aquayo on the sideline before the field goal kick. The team support and power actions of defense to get the ball back and Jameis Winston leading the offense gave him another opportunity to make a field goal. Koetter continues to have concerns about the rookie after a loss to Los Angeles Rams two weeks ago. He missed a 41-yard field goal which would have given the Buccaneers the lead. Koetter is pleased with the overall performance of the NFL team and the winning field goal.