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5 Training Camp Battles to Watch

Posted Aug 10, 2017

The competition at training camp is heating up.

1. Cam Brate vs. O.J. Howard
Brate and Howard will both see a significant number of reps this season. Despite the Bucs’ complicated plans for their two talented tight ends, this is a very real battle and will have a significant impact on the Buccaneers’ offense. Brate has been working as the starter for most of camp and has been targeted more often than Howard, but Howard has the edge thus far in the run game.

2. Stevie Tu’ikolovatu vs. Sealver Siliga
Both players have a similar build: big-bodied run-stuffers. And despite the fact that Tu’ikolovatu is a rookie and Siliga is a five-year vet, the two are just one year apart in age. Tu’ikolovatu has been a plesant surprise during training camp, particularly when asked to bull-rush or hold his ground in the run game. Siliga has flashed at times, too. There’s a realistic chance just one of the two make the Bucs’ 53-man roster.

3. Jeremy McNichols vs. Peyton Barber
The Buccaneers have eight running backs on their roster, but just three have designated spots on the depth chart. Doug Martin is listed as the team’s No. 1 running back, following by Jacquizz Rodgers and Charles Sims. Barber, McNichols, Russell Hansbrough, Blake Sims and Quayvon Hicks are all listed as “other.” As a draft pick, it’ll be hard to sneak McNichols through to the practice squad, if the team wanted to go that route. Take it for what it’s worth, but Barber and McNichols are listed at the top of the “other” section on the depth chart, with Barber at No. 4 and McNichols at No. 5.

4. Roberto Aguayo vs. Nick Folk
For Folk to beat out Aguayo, the returning starter, he’ll have to do something to stand out. So far during training camp, both players have had their ups and downs and neither player has separated themselves. If this competition is close, expect Aguayo to win the job.

5. Ryan Fitzpatrick vs. Ryan Griffin
When the Buccaneers signed Fitzpatrick this spring, many expected him to take over for Mike Glennon as the team’s backup quarterback. That job won’t just be handed to him, though. Griffin has taken plenty of second-team reps while Fitzpatrick has been with the third team for the majority of practices. On Wednesday, Griffin had the edge.