Photos from the Bucs' practice on Wednesday, November 18th, at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa.
Between the end their thrilling Week 10 win over the Dallas Cowboys and kickoff this coming Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have had time to break down their most recent game tape, devise a game plan for the Eagles and hone their plays on the practice field. They also found plenty of time to discuss the week's most pressing topics, from facing Eagles QB Mark Sanchez to the possibility of finally going on a winning streak.
Here are the top 10 things we heard from Buccaneers players and coaches in Week 11 of the 2015 season:
- "Definitely a better feeling around here today, to get a home win like that in that fashion. No such thing as an ugly win or anything like that. It's hard to get wins in the NFL. [My] previous times up here [I] talked about not being able to finish…we finished, offensively, going on the drive that we had to have, defensively getting the last stop, getting the interception. Getting the takeaway by [Bradley] McDougald is the way you want to finish the game off. Our guys stepped up to the plate."
- Head Coach Lovie Smith on the come-from-behind victory over Dallas in Week 10
- "I think that fits in persevering, being able to overcome adversity, it fits in that category. I think that's huge, because when you have a team that's depending on one guy in those situations the fans, the team, even the coaches look at one guy. You have to come through in those situations. When you have a great team and guys around you that are hungry to win games, it makes my job easier."
- Rookie QB Jameis Winston on delivering the game-winning score against the Cowboys with less than a minute to play
- "Just doing your thing, honestly. They're going to do what they do. They're not going to change much. They're kind of – I wouldn't say 'limited' in what they do but they repeat a lot of the same concepts but get to them a million different ways. So just being assignment-key and knowing what you have on each play [is important]."
- CB Sterling Moore on defending the Eagles' up-tempo attack
- "When we have guys hurt everybody has to do a little more. Mike is a traditional X-receiver who goes out there and gets single-covered. We've asked Mike to do a lot. We're moving Mike. Mike is playing in the slot, he's playing Z, he's playing X. He's had to do more in the injured players' absence. Mike is only in his second season, so hat's off to him for a job well down last week. He is a tough matchup because of his size, number one, his power and he's deceptively fast. He doesn't burn it off the line of scrimmage like you think a real fast guy would, but when Mike gets going he can really run. He got in a good rhythm over there is in his last game against Dallas. He got in a good rhythm and he kind of got [Morris Claiborne] back on his heels a little bit and we kept going at it."
- Offensive Coordinator Dirk Koetter on Mike Evans' contributions while fellow starting receiver Vincent Jackson has been injured
- ""Of course that helps. It doesn't matter what type of offense you have. Any team that's getting a lot of takeaways is a good thing – more opportunities to score. They've done a great job with that. Ball security is always important, but this week, when a team is on record, not talking about it but actually doing it, we have to be careful."
- Smith on the propensity of the Eagles' defense to create turnovers, thus providing more quick-strike scoring opportunities for the offense
- "We're going to get after it every week. That's our mindset, get after it every week. Go out there, have fun, ball. We're not worrying about the quarterback. He's a good quarterback too, so you never know. He could come out there and throw passes on you too, so just got out there, do what we're supposed to do and do our responsibilities."
- LB Kwon Alexander on facing QB Mark Sanchez with Sam Bradford sidelined
- "It can be a challenge. You look at the tape and you see teams getting caught with 12 [players] on the field or not being able to match up and not getting calls in, guys turning around and looking for a call. It's something we've talked about. We worked on it yesterday in practice, we'll work on it again today. That up-tempo can create some problems when you are talking about substitutions, getting the calls in to the defense. All those things are important and we need to keep our composure. Hopefully we'll have a good enough plan where our guys can go out and play fast."
- Defensive Coordinator Leslie Frazier on keeping up on defense against an offense that is running in hurry-up mode
- "When a guy isn't getting any reps, isn't practicing at all, when he gets on the field you feel a lot better about him. I would say he wasn't 100 percent this past week, but we have a little bit more time before the game. He's getting closer and that's encouraging. Our rush hasn't been exactly what we would like for it to be so we need a guy like that back as soon as possible."
- Smith on the possibility of DE Jacquies Smith returning from his ankle injury and how that would help the team if it happened
- "After the game, whatever is on my heart I just let it out, because we worked so hard to prepare for a whole week. We have so many distractions, so many people jabbing at us, so many people wanting to see us fail. We have people that support us and want to see us succeed, but when you get there with your teammates … and you just see everybody come to work every day. I feel good to be able to speak up for my team."
- QB Jameis Winston on giving well-received postgame locker room speeches
- "I don't think we've been .500 since 2012. That would be huge for us. We haven't had back-to-back wins since 2013, so that's another opportunity. Everything's close and within reach. We just have to make sure we're steady moving forwards. Don't want to take a step backwards with this game."
- DT Gerald McCoy on the Bucs' need to go on a winning streak after getting the victory last week