2014 Bucs Camp Preview: Special Teams

View Comments
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Upcoming Games

Buy Buccaneers Tickets Full Schedule
Sunday Dec 21
vs. Packers
Sunday Dec 28
vs. Saints
Buccaneers Central
Shop for Bucs Gear
NFL Scoreboard
NFL Standings
Team STATS
Team Schedule
Team Roster
Team Injuries

Sports Fan Insider

Keep up with your favorite teams and athletes with daily updates.
Sign Up

ALL EYES ON: K Connor Barth

After suffering an unfortunate Achilles injury in his charity basketball game that kept him out all of 2013, Connor Barth is back. The Bucs welcome his return after the inconsistent play of long time veteran Rian Lindell last season. Before his injury, Barth was one of the most accurate kickers in the NFL, compiling a field goal percentages above 80% including making 26-of-28 (92.9%) FGs in 2011. But what separates the UNC grad from the pack is his accuracy from 50 yards and beyond. He hasn’t kicked under 50% from 50+ in a season yet. Tampa Bay is hoping Barth can replicate that production.

WANTED: Returners

The biggest unknown entering training camp is who will return punts and kicks. At one point in their mandatory mini-camp, the Buccaneers had as many as eight players taking reps (WR Eric Page, WR Skye Dawson, RB Mike James, RB Jeff Demps, RB Charles Sims, RB Bobby Rainey, WR Chris Owusu, and WR Solomon Patton). The dominoes will start to fall once the depth positions have been taken at running back and wide receiver. With how many combinations Jeff Tedford will use in his offense, the candidates who get less time will have more opportunities in the return game. Don’t be surprised we see a rotation here as well.

CAMP OBJECTIVE: Fire & Desire

Buccaneers special teams coordinator Kevin O’Dea’s philosophy will be based on physical and mental toughness, plus giving max effort until the whistle blows. Special teams is the most overlooked element of football. It has potential for game changing plays, and the Bucs will need game changers in this area. And with veteran leaders Adam Hayward and Dekoda Watson now elsewhere, Tampa Bay will need new leaders to step in and fill the void.

View Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,024 other followers