TAMPA, Florida - Welcome to camp -- now we want you to run sixteen 100-yard sprints. That was the expectation Head Coach Greg Schiano and his staff set for the 2012 crop of Buccaneers reporting to training camp this morning.
The condition test marked only the second time a cardiovascular test of that magnitude was administered to kickoff camp in the last four coaching regimes. Yet, Schiano says it will be an annual occurrence during his tenure in Tampa Bay. A handful of players failed to meet the new staffs' off-season conditioning expectations, and will be dealt with accordingly, says the new head coach.
"I won't get into specifics of exactly what is going to be done for who did not meet the minimum standard, 'cause we do have a minimum standard that we set and if it's not met there's consequence," says Schiano.
Sixteen-year veteran Ronde Barber says it was abundantly obvious the team knew the condition test was coming as soon as they arrived. "You know, he was very clear he wanted guys to be able to pass this test, and he talked about it every single day during off-season," says Barber. "I don't think anybody was surprised it was coming."
Over the past couple of seasons, the Bucs admittedly have been worn down in the fourth quarter. So today's test was set to serve a purpose. "The principal behind it is to mock a 16-play drive, so it's tough anytime you mock a 16-play drive. Any time of year it's rough," says Guard Davin Joseph.
Only two players didn't participate in the conditioning test: Defensive End Daquan Bowers is still recovering from a torn achilles, while Effusing Tackle Donald Penn injured himself in California. Schiano says he won't be back for weeks.
"Penn has a calf strain," says Schiano.
Penn checked into camp earlier this week seeking treatment for his injury.
"We're just hoping he continues to get the treatment other guys are just going to have to step up and improve in their game and give us the type of versatility we need as an offense," says Offensive Coordinator Mike Sullivan.
And they'll start trying to patch that hole tomorrow morning as the Bucs take the practice field for the first time in 2012 training camp.