Tampa Bay Buccaneers

5 Standouts from Week 1 of OTAs

Five players who impressed during the first week of OTAs.

The best photos from the first week of OTAs.

1. CB Alterraun Verner
The Buccaneers' starting lineup far from set, but Verner appears to be in a position to play a significant role on the Bucs' defense this season. Verner began 2015 as a starter but saw his playing time decrease as the season carried on. New defensive coordinator Mike Smith has had Verner working alongside Brent Grimes as one of the Bucs' starting corner throughout the first week of OTAs.

2. TE Cameron Brate
With Austin Seferian-Jenkins battling injuries a year ago, Brate stepped in to become the Bucs' leading receiver at the tight end position. Brate, who was waived at the start of last season and briefly claimed by the Saints, has looked strong in both of the Bucs' open OTA practices. He caught several passes during each of the two practices, including a one-handed catch behind his back on Thursday.  

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  1. LB Kwon Alexander**
    To measure Alexander's impact on the Buccaneers' defense, look at the team's last four games of 2015; with Alexander suspended, the team dropped all four of their final games. Alexander has spent the offseason training intensely and his hard work has shown during OTAs. He has gotten his hands on a few passes, including recording an interception.

4. WR Mike Evans
Evans has been Jameis Winston's favorite downfield target throughout OTAs. In each of the two open practices Evans has caught passes of 40-plus yards, including a touchdown on Tuesday.

5. DE Noah Spence
It's hard to measure a defensive end's progress during non-contact practices, but based on what Spence's teammates and coaches have said, he appears to be transitioning well into the NFL. On Thursday, Robert Ayers compared Spence to Von Miller and on Tuesday, Gerald McCoy and Donovan Smith spoke highly of the rookie.

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