By Tom Krasniqi (Twitter: @TKras)
The weather conditions for Day 5 of Bucs training camp were exactly what you’d expect for late July in Tampa—Hot and toasty. And so was Bucs wide receiver Chris Owusu, who was in the zone during Monday’s practice at One Buc Place. Check that. He’s been scorching throughout camp. “Well, he’s getting better,” head coach Greg Schiano said after Monday’s practice.
Owusu made catch after catch. Whether it was along the sideline or deep down the field or diving over the middle. #80 made them all. And he’s enjoying every minute of it. “It was fun,” said Owusu after Monday’s practice. “It was fun to go out and compete. We have an off day tomorrow [Tuesday] so I wanted to go out there and end it on a good day.”
The Bucs’ receiving corps is very deep and talented. Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams are locked in as starters. Behind them, there’s Kevin Ogletree and Tiquan Underwood so Owusu knows he has to make the most of every rep he gets during camp. “Incredible depth…You have to bring your ‘A’ game all the time,” says Owusu.
The presence of Pro Bowl WR Vincent Jackson certainly helps. Owusu believes Jackson has been a tremendous influence on him. “Just attack the defender and be a professional at all times,” Owusu said of what Jackson has taught him. “Vince is the best professional I’ve seen….ever”.
Owusu played his college ball at Stanford and was signed by the 49ers after going undrafted in 2012. He was among San Francisco’s final cuts before last season. He signed with the Chargers and was placed on their practice squad before the Bucs scooped him up last September. The 6-0, 196-pound Owusu has terrific speed—4.36 in the 40—but concussions and various injuries marred his college career. He ran track in high school so he could also be an option as a returner for the Bucs.
So far in camp, he’s opened some eyes with his play. If he keeps it up, the Bucs will have some tough decisions to make at that 5th WR spot. Owusu is determined to make more plays so he has a fighting chance. “You have to make it[plays] early, you have to make it late. You have to make it all the time,” said Owusu. “This is the NFL…the guys here are top notch. The skill level is high so you have to bring it at all times.”
News & Notes:
- CB Darrelle Revis was not on the field for Monday’s practice. Head coach Greg Schiano says the plan all along was to have Revis practice for four straight days, then take Monday off. The team is off on Tuesday. Revis was rehabbing in the weight room.
- WR Mike Williams got banged up on the final play of practice. His left leg appeared stiff as he gingerly walked off the practice field (cramps?) with the trainer. Schiano was unaware of the injury.
- Several injured players were back at Monday’s practice, including CB Danny Gorrer (groin) and DE William Gholston (hamstring). DT Gary Gibson (ankle) and TE Luke Stocker (calf- PUP list) remain out. Schiano believes Gibson will return on Wednesday.
- Kicker Derek Dimke boomed a 54-yard FG to cap off the 2-minute drill at the end of practice. The kid has a strong leg.
- The defense applied plenty of pressure on Josh Freeman and the QBs on Monday. MLB Mason Foster and CB Michael Adams among those with ‘sacks’.
- Schiano likes what he sees so far from UDFA CB Rashaan Melvin (6-2, 193lbs) out of Northern Illinois: “So far all I can judge him on is what he’s done here and I think he’s shown some good stuff”.
- Bucs made some roster moves on Monday. DE Markus White was activated off the PUP list. Safety Troy Nolan was signed. Nolan (6-2, 200lbs) was a 7th round pick of Houston back in 2009. He’s also played for Miami and Chicago. To make room, guard Jeff Olson was waived.
- The Bucs have Tuesday off. Their next public practice is on Wednesday morning from 8:45am-11:30am at One Buc Place. Parking and admission are free. For more information, check out 620wdae.com and buccaneers.com.
- For the latest news on Bucs training camp, keep it locked all day long on 620 WDAE and 95.3FM, your home of the Bucs and the best Bucs coverage.