Despite trying to hold out as long as possible before calling it, the weather ended up forcing the Buccaneers indoors on Tuesday right before practice was set to begin. Storms and heavy rain had been in the area all morning so it meant the players would practice in pads in the indoor facility for the first time this preseason.
It was also a rest day for a few players, including Lavonte David again because Head Coach Bruce Arians didn't want him coming back to practice after a day off on the turf of the indoor facility, which can be harder on players' bodies. In addition to David, quarterback and birthday boy Tom Brady had a day off as well as tight end Rob Gronkowski. Arians is a big advocate of giving veteran players rest days in camp ahead of a long, grueling season.
It also gave some other players a chance to step up, with a lot of second and third-team players getting the majority of the reps on Tuesday.
View some of the photos from Buccaneers Training Camp practice at the AdventHealth Training Center.
Here are some things that stood out:
-Ross Cockrell had another near pick on a long ball over the middle. He's become excellent at tracking those passes from the safety spot as he gets more comfortable with the position. Cockrell said over the weekend that it's a matter of seeing the entire field as a safety, as opposed to being at corner and just worrying about your man most of the time. It seems like he's certainly getting the hang of it.
-Quarterback Blaine Gabbert hit Chris Godwin on the run in traffic and Godwin was able to escape the defenders on him to take off down the field in the limited work he got today.
-Inside linebacker Devin White's focus on his coverage skills is clearly paying off. He ran with tight end Tanner Hudson stride for stride and then was able to knock the ball away from Hudson before he could make the grab from quarterback Ryan Griffin.
-Safety Antoine Winfield Jr. got his hands on a pass when a ball intended for tight end O.J. Howard was tipped just enough for it to bounce into Winfield's arms. We didn't see as many long passes in Tuesday's practice and the defense seemed to have the advantage throughout the day in pads.
-White continued his ball skills in seven-on-seven drills where he got a pass breakup on a shallow route intended for the running back. It was a near-instant denial for White.
-Safety Herb Miller and inside linebacker Grant Stuard stuck with tight end Jerell Adams as a pass over the middle came his way. They both went up with Adams to get the ball and it was Stuard that ended up breaking up the pass in the end to force the incompletion.
-In one-on-ones between the offensive and defensive lines, outside linebacker Anthony Nelson working against tackle Josh Wells showed off some quick feet to get past Wells in a hurry. It was well received by his coaches following the rep.
-In red zone drills, Gabbert threw a dart to wide receiver Tyler Johnson in the end zone that was aided by a good block by wide receiver Scotty Miller to give Gabbert more time.
-Winfield Jr. had another great play on the ball as he broke up a third-down pass intended for Hudson right before the goal line in the same red zone period. It forced the offense to settle for a field goal on the series.
-The next series, however, ended in the offense's favor as Griffin hit wide receiver Josh Pearson for a 50-yard touchdown pass where defenders completely lost track of Pearson and left him wide open in the end zone.
-It was quarterback Kyle Trask's turn to lead a series in situational drills and the first play was nearly picked off by cornerback Nate Brooks right at the sideline. The ball instead bounced off Brooks and ended in an incomplete pass, giving Trask another shot.
-A third down sack would ensure that Trask didn't get past midfield, though.
-He was then given another shot and the first play, he floated a pass over the pile at the line of scrimmage to wide receiver T.J. Simmons for a first down. The series would eventually end in a short field goal for the offense.
-Arians talked the other day about how he wanted to see more tough, 'grimy' catches from Miller and he seems to have taken that to heart. Miller went up for a hard-fought catch where he collided with the defender in midair, but came down with the ball anyway for a few-yard gain.
-The next play was a handoff to running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn, who was immediately met in the backfield by outside linebacker Joe Tryon. The rookie said he likes playing the run along with rushing the passer and it turns out, he looks like he's pretty good at it, too.