After idling throughout most of the spring and summer, football is now approaching at warp speed. Like their fellow 31 NFL teams, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are picking up the pace as they head into the second week of their most unusual training camp ever.
This week, the Buccaneers will actually progress through a version of the NFL's tiered offseason program, a process that usually last from April through mid-June. The Bucs will do it in six days. All of that will lead to the beginning of training camp at its most recognizable, with the first padded practice to be held next Monday, August 17.
On Monday and Tuesday, the Buccaneers will wrap up the first phase of the ramp-up period, which primarily consists of strength and conditioning work. This has been going on since August 3, with the team splitting into offense and defense for separate workouts to help with social distancing.
View some of the photos from Buccaneers Training Camp practice at the AdventHealth Training Center.
The first time that Tom Brady and his new teammates will gather for some form of practice will be on Wednesday, the first of two days they will spend in the second phase. These workouts still won't feature competition between the offense and defense or between kicking and return units; rather they will be performed "on air."
On Friday, the action ramps up again as the team moves into the final part of the ramp-up period. This will include practices resembling OTAs (organized team activity) that are usually conducted in May and June. The Bucs will hold two of these practices, one on Friday and one on Sunday, with the weekly required day off in between. These practices still won't involve pads or contact but they will include such offense-vs.-defense drills as 7-on-7 and 9-on-7. These practices can be run at full speed but have a maximum time limit of two hours.
All of the workouts from Wednesday through Sunday will be held in the morning, beginning at 9:00 a.m. Teams are also allowed a separate walk-through each day, and the Buccaneers will conduct those in the afternoon, likely taking advantage of their air-conditioned indoor facility. The Bucs could also move any of their practices indoors but by scheduling them in the morning they likely won't run into many weather issues.
The Bucs will start these workouts with almost all of their players available to practice. Rookie running backs Raymond Calais and Ke'Shawn Vaughn were activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Thursday and Sunday, respectively and have rejoined the team. That list is currently empty. Safety Justin Evans is the only player currently on the active/PUP or active/NFI lists; he does count against the roster limit but won't practice until he is removed from that list. Tackle Brad Seaton is on the reserve/opt-out list after exercising his opt out option for the 2020 season; he does not count against the roster limit. Head Coach Bruce Arians indicated last week that rookie wideout Tyler Johnson is dealing with a minor injury, which likely prompted the weekend re-signing of Jaydon Mickens.
There are no practices open to fans during this year's training camp due to the pandemic. However, as they did last week, the Buccaneers will continue to provide photo galleries of the onfield action and video highlight packages such as this one detailing the first week of camp. Player interviews continue to be conducted over Zoom calls and are broadcast live here and on Facebook; the next scheduled interview will be with running back Ronald Jones on Monday at noon ET. Arians will speak at 3:00 p.m. ET on Thursday.
Come back next Monday for a rundown of what's to come as the pads go on and the action kicks into another gear. That will include the debut of this year's Training Camp Live show, which will endeavor to provide Buccaneer fans with a look at everything going on inside and outside the AdventHealth Training Center.