TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 25: Josh Freeman #5 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers runs with the ball during a game against the Atlanta Falcons at Raymond James Stadium on September 25, 2011 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
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TAMPA - It was 10 years ago when the Bucs last practiced against another team in the preseason, back in the Jon Gruden days.
Seeing the Patriots at One Buc today was historical in its own right.
First time these two teams held a joint practice session, with another day to do before they engage on Friday night at Raymond James Stadium.
QB Tom Brady on the same field as QB Josh Freeman.
Neither spoke to each other. Neither had much to say about each other.
Oh, there were a few friends co-mingling after practice, but the most meaningful friendship is one forged between Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Bucs head coach Greg Schiano.
If only Schiano’s success ascends to half the dimensions of friend Bill.
With Isaac bearing down on Florida as of this writing and rain always a threat on any given day, we do hope this 3rd week dress rehearsal has no excuses.
New England will be a formidable opponent with all their starters likely going to at least halftime, if not into the third quarter.
Ditto for the Bucs.
We will get a very good look at where this pewter and red group stands.
Here are my three things to look for on Friday night:
1. For the final time: D-Line---can they put pressure on Brady. Love to see a sack, if nothing else to at least say they had one in the preseason.
2. Like to see the Bucs offense create meaningful drives. They had one good one against Tennnesee last week, but sputtered the rest of the way.
3. Special Teams- Did not like coverage of special teams at all last week. Since this team is so young, I really do have a concern this area (coverage) could be an albatross.
This is the big one when it comes to preseason. Let’s see what the Bucs bring.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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