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Thursday, May 24, 2018
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Bucs notes: Penn says frustration led to sideline exchange

TAMPA — According to Donald Penn, he wasn’t mad at Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammate Vincent Jackson.

He was just plain mad.

Television cameras zeroed in on Tampa Bay’s veteran left tackle in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss to the Jets as Penn and Jackson appeared to be in a heated discussion along the sideline.

“I was trying to explain something to the offensive coordinator (Mike Sullivan) about some miscommunication and Vincent did what he’s supposed to do — he told me to go on to the next play,’’ Penn said. “I was frustrated with how we were playing, but I shouldn’t react like that because you never know when the camera is on you.

“Me and Vincent Jackson are fine. There’s no beef, no nothing. I was frustrated because we’re way better than the way we played on Sunday.’’

The Bucs were limited to 250 total yards and the Jets rallied in the final seconds for an 18-17 victory.“I’ve got to learn to handle it better because I’m a leader,’’ Penn said. “I’m not a captain, but I’m a leader. I’ve got to do better about not letting my anger show.’’

Josh Freeman was sacked three times and second-year back Doug Martin found few running lanes as he gained only 65 yards in 24 carries. On Sunday, the Bucs face division rival New Orleans in the home opener.

“As an offensive line, we can’t sugarcoat it,’’ Penn said. “We have to step it up and get this thing going. We were not at our best and we’re going to get it fixed this Sunday. Our defense is playing their butt off. ...We have to help them out.’’

Cough it up

Bucs S Dashon Goldson, known as one of the league’s hardest hitters, was fined by the NFL for his personal foul against Jets TE Jeff Cumberland on an incomplete pass over the middle in the second quarter.

Goldson said he was docked a “significant’’ amount.

“The refs have a tough job and they have to call it like they see it,’’ Goldson said, “but I have to play my style of football. That’s what we want to be known for — a physical football team.’’

Just a blur

New Bucs RB Jeff Demps flashed his world-class speed during Wednesday’s practice, impressing teammates and coaches alike.

“He made one run today, he reversed field and he outran the whole secondary, the whole team, really,’’ Schiano said. “You can see he’s rusty, he hasn’t played football in awhile, but he looked excited and he has fresh legs.’’

Demps, obtained from the Patriots in an April trade involving RB LeGarrette Blount, was a four-year letterman on the University of Florida track team and a member of the 2012 U.S. Olympic 4x100 meter relay team that won the silver medal.

He joined the Bucs on Monday and could see action as a kick returner.

“We knew what we were getting when he came in,’’ WR Mike Williams said. “Is he the fastest guy in the NFL? I’d say yes, by far.’’

Tough matchup

After facing a Jets team that doesn’t boast many proven offensive weapons, Tampa Bay’s defense must deal with 6-foot-7 TE Jimmy Graham, who has developed into a key target for prolific QB Drew Brees. In the past two seasons, Graham has 188 catches for 2,337 yards and 21 TDs.

“He’s a nightmare, as far as being able to run like a receiver,’’ said Bucs MLB Mason Foster, who posted two sacks in Week 1. “He’s big like a basketball player and Graham’s got great body control. But we’ve got great athletes on our side of the ball as well.’’

Extra points

CB Mike Adams underwent knee surgery Wednesday, said coach Greg Schiano, who added that Adams is expected to return sometime after the bye week in early October. ...Since the 2002 re-alignment, 59 percent of NFL playoff teams have started off either 1-1 or 0-2. ...In winning three of the past four matchups at Raymond James Stadium, the Saints averaged 31 points per game. ...New Orleans NT Brodrick Bunkley, a former standout at Florida State, is expected to miss Sunday’s game with a calf injury. ...Since Brees arrived in 2006, the Saints are 47-10 when he posts a passer rating of 100.0 or more.

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