Video: Fantasy Team Outlook – Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Dave Richard, Jamey Eisenberg and Jamie Erdahl break down the Buccaneers from a Fantasy perspective to help you succeed on Draft Day.

Buccaneers Bring Back Free Agent DL Da’Quan Bowers

Buffalo Bills v Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers are giving defensive lineman Da’Quan Bowers another chance to reach the potential that once made him one of the top pass-rushing prospects in all of football, Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune reports.

Bowers, a 2011 second-round draft pick of the Bucs who went untouched through four months of free agency, re-signed with Tampa Bay on Monday, the team announced.

Bowers hinted at a possible reunion with the Bucs on social media a couple of weeks ago and quickly returned to that forum to announce his return.

Bowers wrote on his Twitter feed: “The ink is dry and the deal is done!! I’m coming back home!!! #itsabucslife #firethemcannons.’’

Details of the contract were not released, but the reunion has the potential to add depth to a defensive line that remains in transition, particularly at defensive end. The Bucs are expected to start Jacquies Smith at right end and George Johnson at left end, but which players will join the team’s defensive end rotation remains uncertain.

Buccaneers To Use SIDEKIQ Simulator Football Software for Quarterbacks

EON-VR

The Buccaneers announced they will begin using the SIDEKIQ simulator football software developed by EON Sports VR as a supplement to their on-field work for quarterbacks when the team reports back for training camp beginning on August 1st. Additionally, the Buccaneers plan to become the first NFL team to introduce virtual reality at the youth football level by incorporating instructional sessions featuring the technology at the Cannonfire QB Clinic planned for July 25th at Skyway Park in Tampa, FL.

“We are excited to be coming in on the front end of this new wave of technology that is designed to supplement the on-field and classroom work that our quarterbacks are already doing,” said Buccaneers General Manager Jason Licht. “Obviously, there is no real substitute for being on the field when it comes to getting our players ready for game action. However, this virtual reality technology allows us to enhance the learning experience for our quarterbacks without requiring them to put in additional time on the practice fields.”

As the use of virtual reality technology continues to grow among college and professional sports teams, the SIDEKIQ simulator is the first computer modeling product that allows the user to input a playbook and an opposing team’s playbook seamlessly into the software. The system is extremely portable, requires only a specially-designed lightweight headset that works in conjunction with proprietary software, and can be used with any smartphone. Through the use of computer-generated graphics, the SIDEKIQ simulates game conditions and allows the user to custom tailor a virtual game scenario from the same perspective they would see on the field during an actual game or practice session.

“Virtual reality has become very popular in high school and college programs and there has recently been much more interest in the technology from professional sports teams looking to add to their teaching tools while limiting exposure to injuries that may occur in live-action situations,” said EON Sports VR CEO Brendan Reilly. “We are excited to get to work with the Buccaneers and provide their quarterbacks with the opportunity to train more efficiently than ever before.”

 

Father of Bucs CB Wilson Says Son Lucky to Be Alive Following Fireworks Accident

TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 9: Safety Major Wright #31 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Raymond James Stadium on November 9, 2014, in Tampa, Florida. The Buccaneers lost 27-17 (photo by Mike Carlson/Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Buccaneers cornerback C.J. Wilson suffered a severe hand injury in a fireworks accident on the Fourth of July, .

The former Lincolnton High School standout lost two fingers on one hand – his index and middle fingers – after fireworks exploded in a canister Wilson was holding.

It’s unclear if or how the injury will impact his professional football career.

“I’m sure it’s in the back of his mind,” his father, Curtis Wilson, Sr., told Coleen Harry of WBTV. “For me that really doesn’t matter. My son is alive so God took care of him as far as that. I guess we’ll cross that bridge later on down the road.”

Mr. Wilson said his son was with a group at a friend’s house in Lincolnton the night of the Fourth.

“Having fun with fireworks,” Wilson Sr. said. “I’m not sure where they purchased it from, exactly what nature it was, but had one explode while he was holding it in his hand.”

Mr. Wilson said he was not with his son when the accident happened, but he was told CJ “was pretty much holding the canister – not trying to hold the fireworks – but the canister that it was supposed to pop out of… well it didn’t pop. It exploded inside the canister.”

WBTV checked with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office and the Lincolnton Police Department but neither agency received an emergency call for the fireworks accident.

Mr. Wilson said that his son’s friends “put him in a vehicle and took him to the {local} hospital.”

Lt William Brooks of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office said deputies were called to CHS Hospital in Boger City because someone was causing a disturbance.

According to Lt Brooks, “someone was who with C.J. Wilson was apparently upset about the injury and punched a hole in the EMS bay.”

Buccaneers Release Statement Regarding C.J. Wilson

New Orleans Saints v Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Bucs have put out a statement regarding the accident on the 4th of July for Bucs CB C.J. Wilson, who injured his hand in a fireworks accident.

“We are aware that C.J. was involved in an accident that occurred over the July 4th holiday. It is our understanding that the injury occurred to one of his hands and our primary concern at this moment is for his long-term health. We have been in contact with C.J. and are continuing to monitor the situation.”

ESPN NFL Insider Ed Werder claims that the injury was “significant.”

New Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston a “Gym Rat” According to Coach Lovie Smith

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Minicamp

Buccaneers head Coach Lovie Smith has had a little over a month to work with his new quarterback, Jameis Winston. Smith said that so far, Winston’s been exactly what the Bucs had hoped for, Joe Kania of Buccaneers.com reports.

“I think in Jameis’ case, for me… I didn’t want a surprise,” Smith said in a one-on-one with Buccaneers.com Senior Writer Scott Smith. “And we haven’t gotten one. I thought he would be a certain way, and that’s what he’s been. All of the positive things you’ve heard about Jameis is what we’ve been able to see. He is very smart. He is a gym rat – football junkie. He does have personality. His glass is half full every day.”

Some of the Bucs’ veterans, including Gerald McCoy and Vincent Jackson, have said that Winston’s been “quiet” and has been playing the role of a normal rookie. But Smith said that he can still see flashes of the passionate leader Winston’s college teammates and coaches described him as.

“He has a lot of confidence in himself and he’s got a way of rallying people where they believe in him and want to be around him,” Smith said. “As a rookie coming in, that can be hard when you come in a veteran locker room but he’s held every situation we’ve put him in well. But for him now, too, it’s about that process and this next phase, what he does between now and training camp and then what he does in training camp, will be important.”

RT Demar Dotson Misses OTA’s Over Contract Situation

Baltimore Ravens v Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Right tackle Demar Dotson’s absence from the Bucs’ OTA practices this week is contract-related, and while the two sides have been engaged in negotiations on a new deal, his choice to not attend voluntary practices could escalate to a prolonged holdout if a deal isn’t reached, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times reports.

Dotson, 29, who has started all but one game for the Bucs over the last three seasons, is playing under a three-year extension he signed in spring 2013 — originally a modest three-year, $4.5-million deal. Escalators relating to playing time added $1-million to his base salary in 2014 and 2015 — he is due to make $2.5-millon this year, with the possibility of improving a $1.75-million salary for 2016 to $2.75-million with similar playing time.

That still is below value for a starting NFL right tackle, and giving Dotson a new contract is certainly a possibility, but also sets a precedent for the Bucs and general manager Jason Licht in negotiating a bigger deal to a player with two years left on his contract. The team will also be hesitant to reward a player for using his absence from team activities as leverage for a new contract.

Licht did not have any comment on his absence, citing a team policy of not commenting on contract negotiations, and Dotson’s agent, Greg Hobbs, also declined to comment. Bucs coach Lovie Smith, asked about Dotson’s absence Thursday, only reiterated that workouts are voluntary this week and that he knew where Dotson was.

Bucs QB Winston Ranks 2nd in Jersey Sales in the Month of May

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Jameis Winston may have been the first overall pick in May’s NFL Draft, but he wasn’t able to snag the top spot when it came to NFL Jersey sales last month.

The Bucs QB was second on the list of sales, beaten out only by 2nd overall pick, Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota.

The ranking is based on sales on the NFL’s official online store from May 1-May 31.

Perhaps more shocking is that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who is appealing his four-game suspension for his alleged role in Deflategate, finished at No. 3 in jersey sales for the month.

The ranking is surprising not only because it suggests strong support for Brady over the past month, but also because he has been in the same jersey for the past 15 seasons, more than any other player in the top 25 best-selling jerseys in May.

Rounding out to the top 10 were Patriots suspended QB Tom Brady, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.

Here’s the list of the Top 10:

1. Marcus Mariota, Titans
2. Jameis Winston, Buccaneers
3. Tom Brady, Patriots
4. Russell Wilson, Seahawks
5. Odell Beckham Jr., Giants
6. Rob Gronkowski, Patriots
7. Colin Kaepernick, 49ers
8. Dez Bryant, Cowboys
9. Aaron Rodgers, Packers
10. Peyton Manning, Broncos
— Source: NFLShop.com

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