Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Steven Means

Bucs bring back DE Larry English

September, 9, 2014
Sep 9
11:48
AM ET
TAMPA, Fla. – In a bit of a surprising move Tuesday, the Buccaneers made a swap at defensive end.

Second-year pro Steven Means, who seemed to be in the good graces of the coaching staff, was released. The team signed Larry English to replace him.

English was a first-round pick of the San Diego Chargers in 2009. But injuries helped keep English from ever playing up to his potential and the Chargers released him in July.

The Bucs brought English in for part of the preseason and he produced two sacks in preseason games. The Bucs, who had only one sack in the season-opening loss to Carolina, could be looking to English to spice up their pass rush.
TAMPA, Fla. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Da'Quan Bowers is a realist.

Bowers
A day after coach Lovie Smith implied that Bowers' roster spot could be in danger because of missed practice time due to a groin injury, Bowers said he knows what is at stake.

"Everybody’s on the bubble," Bowers said. "There are a select few guys here that have got their spots. The rest of us are competing for jobs. Nobody’s set in stone, definitely not me. I just take that into consideration each and every day."

Bowers said he understood Smith’s comments and is doing everything possible to get back on the field as quickly as possible.

"You can’t prevent injury," Bowers said. "It happens. Like coach said, any time you can’t perform on the practice field it gives someone else another opportunity. When you do get on the practice field, you’ve got to make your reps count and I think I did a pretty decent job of that this camp with the reps I’ve gotten in the game and in practice. Like coach said, the only way to perform and compete is to be on the field."

The reality is the Bucs are set with Michael Johnson and Adrian Clayborn as their starters. They also are high on backups Steven Means and William Gholston, and newcomer Larry English has made a good impression. Before the injury, Bowers had been getting some work as a defensive tackle.

Bowers' best hope of making the roster is to make a good impression at defensive tackle and convince the Bucs he can swing between the two positions.

Da'Quan Bowers on the hot seat?

August, 20, 2014
Aug 20
4:46
PM ET
TAMPA, Fla. -- A few months before the 2011 draft, Da'Quan Bowers was being talked about as the possible first overall selection. Now, the fourth-year defensive end might not even make the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' roster.

Bowers, who dropped to the second round of the draft due to concerns about a knee injury, has had a disappointing career to this point. There was some thought that the arrival of new coach Lovie Smith might give Bowers a fresh start and help him prosper. But Smith said some pretty revealing things about Bowers on Wednesday. Bowers has been sidelined by a groin injury and missed another practice Wednesday.

"I think every day you don't practice you're hurting your chances," Smith said. "We've seen enough to like Da'Quan a lot, but all the reps that he's not getting, someone else is getting. The best way to beat your competition sometimes is just to stay on the field. You can't get Wally Pipped."

The Bucs have some other young defensive ends (William Gholston and Steven Means) that they're high on. The Bucs also have experimented some with Bowers lining up at defensive tackle. But the missed practice time obviously hasn't helped Bowers' stock.

"Da'Quan is trying to get back," Smith said. "I think he has a future in the league whether it be as a defensive end outside or more of a third-down rush guy inside."

But there obviously is some doubt that Bowers' future is with the Buccaneers.

Buccaneers Camp Report: Day 14

August, 12, 2014
Aug 12
8:58
PM ET
TAMPA, Fla. -- A daily review of the hot topics coming out of Tampa Bay Buccaneers training camp:
  • Coach Lovie Smith pulled a bit of a surprise and put an unexpected end to the training camp portion of the preseason Tuesday. The Bucs are off Wednesday. When they return Thursday, they’ll be practicing without pads and preparing for Saturday night’s preseason game with Miami. Smith said he was pleased with camp overall. “I thought it was good," Smith said. “We practiced in the heat of the day most of the time. It’s draining. It’s draining just going through a walk through in Tampa. But the guys got through it. We haven’t had any major injuries. We felt we got about the proper amount of physical contact that we need to get ourselves in position to play the game. I like the work that we’ve done. Most of the guys have made a lot of progress throughout. We just need to kind of take steps now. We want to see improvement in the games."
  • Smith singled out several under-the-radar players that have given themselves a chance to make the roster with strong training camps. He mentioned fullback Jorvorskie Lane, linebacker Danny Lansanah and defensive lineman Scott Solomon. Smith also said rookie receiver Robert Herron has come on strong in recent days after having some problems holding onto the ball earlier in camp.
  • Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy was given most of the practice off. Smith said that was a coach’s decision and a reward for a strong camp by McCoy. Nose tackles Clinton McDonald and Akeem Spence each got some work at McCoy’s three-technique position.
  • Tuesday was “legends" day. The Bucs welcomed 50 former players to watch practice. That was a nice gesture and a change from former coach Greg Schiano, who didn’t always welcome former players. “I think we’ve made it known that they’re welcome," Smith said. “Not just on legends day, but any day coming back to their football team. What we’re doing, we hope that they see, is we’re trying to get it back. Most of the guys that came here had success while they were here, and that’s what we plan to do."
  • The Bucs signed defensive end T.J. Fatinikun.
  • There is no practice Wednesday. The Bucs are scheduled to practice Thursday at 2 p.m. Although Smith isn’t calling it training camp anymore, the practice still will be open to the public, team officials said. This will be the last open practice of the preseason.

Despite the high hopes that came with new coach Lovie Smith, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers weren't very impressive in their preseason debut.

They lost 16-10 to the Jacksonville Jaguars and didn't look sharp in the process. The offense couldn't get much going. The defense played well but allowed Denard Robinson to run for a 23-yard touchdown that gave Jacksonville its final lead. There were penalties and turnovers by the Buccaneers. It was only the first preseason game, but a team coached by Smith has to be much sharper.

Here are some other thoughts on the Bucs' first preseason game of the year:
  • Starting quarterback Josh McCown did not have a great start. He had an interception returned for a touchdown and also lost a fumble and had another that he recovered. He didn't get any help from his offensive line and had to deal with consistent pressure. He completed two of four passes for 20 yards.
  • There has been concern about the offensive line, particularly the guards. It looks like those concerns are legitimate. The first-team offensive line struggled during its playing time.
  • The turnovers, sacks and penalties were disappointing, especially from a team that doesn't have much margin for error.
  • Defensive end Steven Means is probably ticketed for a backup role. But Means was one of the bright spots in the first half, recording a sack and two tackles for a loss.
  • Backup quarterback Mike Glennon (11 of 19 for 140 yards) got more playing time than McCown -- and fared better. Glennon threw a third-quarter touchdown pass to receiver Tommy Streeter, who has been having a nice training camp.
  • Third-string quarterback Mike Kafka had a nice pass to rookie Austin Seferian-Jenkins, but it was wiped out by a penalty on the offensive line.
TAMPA, Fla. -- The Buccaneers announced Sunday afternoon that defensive end Ronald Talley has been activated from the non-football-injury list.

Talley had been out since the start of training camp. With the late start, he faces an uphill battle to make a team that has Michael Johnson, Adrian Clayborn, Da’Quan Bowers, Steven Means and William Gholston at defensive end.

Also, the Sunday practice that was scheduled for 4:30 p.m. ET is currently delayed, as there is lightning in the area. The team will wait for the weather to clear. No estimated practice time has been given.
As the Tampa Bay Buccaneers get ready to start training camp Friday, let’s take a position-by-position look at the team. Let’s start with the defensive line.

There have been some major changes here and those changes should lead to improvement. Defensive end Michael Johnson and defensive tackle Clinton McDonald were brought in to help upgrade a pass rush that wasn't very good last season.

All-Pro Gerald McCoy returns at the defensive tackle spot, and he and McDonald should give the Bucs a strong interior pass rush. Adrian Clayborn seems to be the leading candidate to start opposite Johnson. Clayborn, a former first-round pick, has failed to play up to his potential so far in his pro career. And he enters a contract season, too.

But Clayborn isn’t guaranteed a starting job. William Gholston showed lots of promise last season and should at least earn rotational playing time. Steven Means also has some upside. Akeem Spence started last year as a rookie, but he’s likely to be the top backup to McDonald this year.

Buccaneers who need big camps

July, 14, 2014
Jul 14
1:21
PM ET
With the start of training camp only a little more than a week away, let’s take a look at three Buccaneers who need to have big camps to make sure they’re in the starting lineup on opening day.

Clayborn
Clayborn
Defensive end Adrian Clayborn: He will be one of the most closely watched players in camp. Clayborn’s a former first-round pick and still has upside. But his first three seasons have been nothing special. Maybe a new coaching staff can get more out of him. But Clayborn’s draft status means nothing to the current regime. The Bucs also will be looking at the likes of William Gholston, Da’Quan Bowers and Steven Means opposite free-agent pickup Charles Johnson. If one of them steps up, the starting job might not belong to Clayborn.

Middle linebacker Mason Foster: He’s the odds-on favorite to keep the starting job and call the defensive signals. But Foster first must show he can handle increased duties as a pass defender. Very quietly the team signed Dane Fletcher, who can play the middle. If Foster stumbles, Fletcher could end up starting.

Tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins: Unlike Clayborn and Foster, Seferian-Jenkins is wed to the current regime. He was a second-round draft pick and that alone should make him a strong candidate to be a starter on opening day. But Seferian-Jenkins had a unique offseason, and that’s why he needs a big training camp. Thanks to NCAA and NFL rules, Seferian-Jenkins wasn’t allowed to take part in the offseason program because of a rule that keeps players from taking part until their college's semester is over. The University of Washington, where Seferian-Jenkins played, is on a quarters system, and that got in the way. Seferian-Jenkins missed out on some valuable practice time and that could put him behind Brandon Myers, Luke Stocker and Tim Wright.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers begin a three-day minicamp Tuesday that will conclude their offseason program. But they still have plenty of questions that need to be answered by the start of the regular season.

Let’s take a look at some key issues.

The situation at tight end. This should be one of the more competitive contests in training camp. Second-round pick Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brandon Myers, Luke Stocker and Tim Wright all have their strong points. Seferian-Jenkins’ draft status may make him the favorite to start, but he was unable to participate in the offseason program due to NCAA regulations and that may set him back. There could be a lot of two tight end sets, but the Bucs need to sort this position out in training camp and the preseason.

Carl Nicks’ health. The left guard missed most of last season and hasn’t taken part in the offseason program. The team has been quiet about Nicks’ health, but this is a key issue. If Nicks is healthy, he’s one of the best guards in the league and the offensive line has a chance to be very good. If he’s not healthy, the Bucs will be looking at the possibility of starting Jamon Meredith and Oniel Cousins at the guard spots and that would make the offensive line far less imposing.

The rotation behind Doug Martin. The Bucs have made it clear that they will split the load among the running backs. We know that Martin is the featured back. But Mike James, Bobby Rainey, Jeff Demps and rookie Charles Sims are all in the mix for roster spots and playing time. There’s no clear-cut favorite for the top backup job and any of the four can claim it in the preseason.

The defensive line rotation. It sounds like the Bucs will rotate defensive linemen more frequently than they did under former coach Greg Schiano. That’s a good idea because the Bucs have some depth on the defensive line with the likes of Da’Quan Bowers, William Gholston, Steven Means and Akeem Spence.

The cornerback competition. Last week, defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said the competition between Johnthan Banks and Mike Jenkins is very close. One of them will end up starting opposite Alterraun Verner, but it doesn’t sound like either one has an edge just yet.

Looking at playing time: Defense

January, 17, 2014
Jan 17
2:30
PM ET
TAMPA, Fla. -- We previously showed you the playing time for all of Tampa Bay's offensive players. Now, it's time to do the same for the defense.

The Buccaneers had 1,059 defensive plays. Here's the breakdown of the number of plays each defensive player participated in, followed by my quick take.

DEFENSIVE LINE: Gerald McCoy 962, Adrian Clayborn 933, Akeem Spence 694, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 602, William Gholston 312, Da'Quan Bowers 206, Gary Gibson 164, Derek Landri 123, Steven Means 77, Trevor Scott 54.

Quick take: Most teams rotate their defensive linemen to keep them fresh. But the Bucs didn't do that with McCoy and Clayborn. The theory behind that was that, even when a bit winded, they were substantially better than their backups. The rookie Gholston got a lot of playing time in the second half of the season.

LINEBACKERS: Lavonte David 1,022, Mason Foster 771, Dekoda Watson 257, Jonathan Casillas 197, Adam Hayward 187, Ka'Lial Glaud 6, Danny Lansanah 4.

Quick take: The Bucs played David as much as they possibly could because he might be the best player on the team. Some of Watson's snaps came at defensive end as the Bucs experimented with him at that position late in the season.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: Darrelle Revis 948, Johnthan Banks 939, Mark Barron 834, Dashon Goldson 807, Leonard Johnson 691, Keith Tandy 441, Ahmad Black 146, Kelcie McCray 101, Michael Adams 86, Danny Gorrer 83.

Quick take: Even though he wasn't 100 percent as he came back from knee surgery, the Bucs still used Revis a lot.

Playing time for the Buccaneers

December, 24, 2013
12/24/13
8:00
AM ET
TAMPA, Fla. -- It's time to take a look at how much playing time each of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers got in Sunday's loss to the St. Louis Rams.

The offense was on the field for 59 plays and the defense took 61 snaps. Here's the breakdown:

OFFENSE

Offensive line: Donald Penn 59, Davin Joseph 59, Demar Dotson 59, Jeremy Zuttah 59, Ted Larsen 37, Jamon Meredith 22, Gabe Carimi 8.

Quarterback: Mike Glennon 59.

Receivers: Vincent Jackson 56, Tiquan Underwood 41, Chris Owusu 23, Eric Page 4.

Tight ends: Timothy Wright 52, Kyle Adams 14.

Running back: Bobby Rainey 41, Erik Lorig 31, Brian Leonard 19, Spencer Larsen 6.

DEFENSE

Defensive line: Gerald McCoy 61, Adrian Clayborn 61, Akeem Spence 48, William Gholston 47, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 13, Steven Means 8, Gary Gibson 4, Derek Landri 2.

Linebackers: Lavonte David 61, Mason Foster 52, Dekoda Watson 26, Adam Hayward 20.

Defensive backs: Dashon Goldson 61, Darrelle Revis 61, Keith Tandy 59, Johnthan Banks 59, Leonard Johnson 19, Kelcie McCray 9.

Playing time for the Buccaneers

December, 17, 2013
12/17/13
8:00
AM ET
TAMPA, Fla. – It’s time for our weekly check on playing time for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

In Sunday’s 33-14 loss to the San Francisco 49ers, the Bucs ran 51 offensive plays and were on the field for 74 defensive snaps.

Here’s a position-by-position look at how many snaps each player got:

OFFENSE

Quarterback: Mike Glennon 51.

Running backs: Bobby Rainey 29, Brian Leonard 22, Erik Lorig 13, Spencer Larsen 3.

Wide receiver: Vincent Jackson 51, Tiquan Underwood 44, Chris Owusu 35, Eric Page 2, Skye Dawson 1.

Tight ends: Tim Wright 48, Kyle Adams 6.

Offensive line: Davin Joseph 51, Donald Penn 51, Jeremy Zuttah 51, Demar Dotson 51, Jamon Meredith 51, Gabe Carimi 1.

DEFENSE

Defensive line: Gerald McCoy 72, Adrian Clayborn 68, Akeem Spence 60, William Gholston 38, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 32, Da'Quan Bowers 9, Derek Landri 7, Steven Means 6.

Linebackers: Mason Foster 69, Lavonte David 66, Dekoda Watson 63, Adam Hayward 9

Defensive backs: Dashon Goldson 74, Johnthan Banks 74, Darrelle Revis 74, Mark Barron 49, Keith Tandy 32, Leonard Johnson 12.

Looking at Buccaneers' playing time

December, 10, 2013
12/10/13
8:00
AM ET
TAMPA, Fla. -- It's time for our weekly look at how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers distributed playing time.

In a 27-6 victory against the Buffalo Bills, the Bucs ran 66 offensive plays and were on the field for 67 defensive snaps. Here's a look at the individual playing time from Sunday.

OFFENSE

Donald Penn 66
Jamon Meredith 66
Demar Dotson 66
Mike Glennon 66
Tim Wright 59
Vincent Jackson 57
Jeremy Zuttah 51
Tiquan Underwood 45
Davin Joseph 43
Erik Lorig 42
Bobby Rainey 37
Ted Larsen 36
Brian Leonard 25
Chris Owusu 21
Gabe Carimi 16
Russell Shepard 14
Kyle Adams 11
Skye Dawson 7
Mike Hill 5
Spencer Larsen 2
Eric Page 1

DEFENSE

Dashon Goldson 66
Johnthan Banks 66
Mark Barron 66
Gerald McCoy 66
Darrelle Revis 66
Lavonte David 59
Leonard Johnson 58
Adrian Clayborn 56
Mason Foster 53
Akeem Spence 43
Daniel Te'o-Nesheim 39
William Gholston 23
Keith Tandy 15
Da'Quan Bowers 14
Adam Hayward 12
Steven Means 11
Derek Landri 11
Dekoda Watson 10
Danny Gorrer 1
Ka'Lial Glaud 1
Kelcie McCray 1

Surveying the Buccaneers' roster

September, 1, 2013
9/01/13
8:00
AM ET
After making their cuts Saturday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a roster that looks a lot like what I projected Friday.

I hit on 51 of 53 roster spots. Defensive tackle Gary Gibson and offensive lineman Cody Wallace were the two guys I had making the team who didn’t make the final cut. I didn’t have tight end Tim Wright and safety Keith Tandy making the roster, but they did.

Let’s take a brief overview of the composition of Tampa Bay’s roster:

QB (3): Josh Freeman, Mike Glennon and Dan Orlovsky

Comment: The question is whether Glennon or Orlovsky will be the No. 2 quarterback. My thinking is the Bucs wouldn’t have held onto Orlovsky if he’s going to be No. 3.

RB (5): Doug Martin, Erik Lorig, Brian Leonard, Mike James and Peyton Hillis

Comment: Leonard, James and Hillis all looked good in the preseason. They all can be used to help keep Martin fresh.

WR (5): Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, Kevin Ogletree, Tiquan Underwood and Eric Page

Comment: The first four were pretty much set in stone. Page made the roster mostly because he’s going to be the return man.

TE (4): Luke Stocker, Tom Crabtree, Nate Byham and Tim Wright

Comment: Presumably, the Bucs kept Wright around because they expect Crabtree to miss some time with an ankle injury.

OL (8): Donald Penn, Carl Nicks, Jeremy Zuttah, Davin Joseph, Demar Dotson, Gabe Carimi, Ted Larsen and Jamon Meredith

Comment: By carrying only three backups, the Bucs appear to be optimistic that Nicks won’t miss too much time due to a staph infection.

DL (9): Adrian Clayborn, Da'Quan Bowers, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim, Trevor Scott, William Gholston, Steven Means, Gerald McCoy, Akeem Spence and Derek Landri

Comment: McCoy, Spence and Landri are the only true defensive tackles. The Bucs must be planning to use at least one of their ends on the inside at times.

LB (6): Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Jonathan Casillas, Dekoda Watson, Najee Goode and Adam Hayward

Comment: The starters have a chance to be one of the league’s best units, and the backups aren’t bad either.

DB (10): Darrelle Revis, Johnthan Banks, Leonard Johnson, Danny Gorrer, Rashaan Melvin, Michael Adams, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron, Ahmad Black and Keith Tandy

Comment: This should be the most improved area on the team.

Specialists (3): Rian Lindell, Andrew Economos and Michael Koenen.

Comment: Lindell is the third projected kicker the Bucs have had. Connor Barth and Lawrence Tynes both are out with injuries.

Projecting the Buccaneers roster

August, 30, 2013
8/30/13
1:23
PM ET
Roster cuts don’t have to be made until 6 p.m. Saturday. But let’s have a little fun in the meantime.

Let’s take a look at my best guess as to how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 53-man roster will shape up:

Quarterbacks (3): Josh Freeman, Mike Glennon and Dan Orlovsky

Analysis: A rough outing by Glennon in the preseason finale might have convinced the Bucs it’s best to keep Orlovsky around.

Running backs and fullbacks (5): Doug Martin, Brian Leonard, Mike James, Peyton Hillis and Erik Lorig

Analysis: Hillis is very much on the bubble. The fact he doesn't play special teams could hurt him. But he also could stick around because he has the size to be a backup for Lorig at fullback and could be a valuable short-yardage rusher.

Tight ends (3): Luke Stocker, Tom Crabtree and Nate Byham

Analysis: The Bucs may have to keep Danny Noble if Crabtree’s ankle injury is going to keep him out for an extended period.

Wide receivers (5): Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, Kevin Ogletree, Tiquan Underwood and Eric Page

Analysis: Page has emerged as the return man and that should earn him the final roster spot.

Offensive line (9): Davin Joseph, Carl Nicks, Donald Penn, Demar Dotson, Jeremy Zuttah, Gabe Carimi, Ted Larsen, Jamon Meredith and Cody Wallace

Analysis: The Bucs could carry an extra lineman if it looks like Nicks will be out for an extended period.

Defensive line (10): Gerald McCoy, Akeem Spence, Adrian Clayborn, Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, Da’Quan Bowers, Gary Gibson, Trevor Scott, William Gholston, Steven Means and Derek Landri

Analysis: The last few spots are very competitive and the Bucs could look to bring in a defensive tackle from the waiver wire.

Linebackers (6): Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Dekoda Watson, Jonathan Casillas, Adam Hayward and Najee Goode

This position is pretty clear-cut unless the Bucs bring in someone off waivers.

Defensive backs (9): Darrelle Revis, Johnthan Banks, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron, Leonard Johnson, Danny Gorrer, Michael Adams, Rashaan Melvin and Ahmad Black.

Analysis: Melvin is very much on the bubble.

Specialists (3): Michael Koenen, Andrew Economos and Rian Lindell.

Analysis: Kicker Lawrence Tynes still is recovering from a staph infection and could end up on injured reserve.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Insider