Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Takeaways from Bucs' Practice – Aug. 20

Jason Pierre-Paul continues to settle into a leadership role as the linebackers get shuffled and Javien Elliott steps up for the corners.

View photos from the Buccaneers' 2018 Training Camp practice Monday at One Buccaneer Place.

-Cornerback Javien Elliott came in at nickel today, likely due to the fact cornerback M.J. Stewart was held out of practice today. He was still on the outside with the second and third teams, but he had some work inside with the first. He had a nice pass breakup over slot receiver Adam Humphries in team drills. The secondary in general has been hit with the injury bug but did get safety Josh Robinson back. Both cornerback De'Vante Harris and safety Jordan Whitehead were in the black non-contact jerseys, meaning they practiced but couldn't be hit, and cornerback Vernon Hargreaves is still being held out.

-The linebackers had a good day playing in coverage. Kwon Alexander had a nasty pass breakup over tight end O.J. Howard, where he basically wrestled the ball out of Howard's hands. Rookie linebacker Jack Cichy had two of his own pass break-ups over tight end Cam Brate. One came in half-team skelly drills and another in team drills. We saw Cichy at middle linebacker with the second-team in the last period with linebacker Riley Bullough playing alongside both Kwon and Lavonte David with first-team. It's more evidence that Bullough has upped his stock, especially with the team getting Devante Bond back practicing today.

-Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul is focusing on leadership with his unit – even with fellow vets. He was seen working with defensive end Vinny Curry, who is entering his seventh NFL season, well after practice concluded going over technique and situational stuff. Even Coach Koetter has mentioned how pleasantly surprised he's been with how much of a leadership role JPP has taken on. Seems the defensive line unit is becoming extremely cohesive behind vets like JPP and Gerald McCoy.

-Rookie wide receiver Justin Watson had more reps with the ones today, which is perhaps a reward for his first NFL touchdown this weekend from the hands of quarterback Jameis Winston. Coach Koetter mentioned yesterday how hard Watson works at improving and today was no exception. He seems to be a sponge with the veterans. DeSean Jackson has talked about getting extra work with him after practice on numerous occasions and Watson is always a part of Winston's post-practice clinic he puts on more often than not with some of the younger receivers.

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