- The Athletic’s Greg Auman notes the Buccaneers are considering using CB Ross Cockrell at safety.
- Auman points out that Cockrell spent time at safety in last year’s training camp and also lined up in the nickel role this offseason.
- NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport notes Buccaneers C Robert Hainsey only suffered from cramping after being carted off of the practice field on Wednesday.
- Buccaneers WR Russell Gage also departed practice with a leg injury but it’s believed to be minor at this time. (Rapoport)
“I’ll play as much as he lets me play,” Mariota said, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Whatever they decide. Whatever the game plan is, I’m going to go out there and have fun playing. I don’t have a pitch count, a snap count or any of that. I’m just more excited just to get out there and play.”
- Panthers HC Matt Rhule said WR C.J. Saunders suffered a quad strain and will miss the next 2-4 weeks. (Ellis L. Williams)
- Rhule also mentioned that TE Ian Thomas (ribs) is expected to miss 1-2 weeks. (NFL.com)
Saints TE Taysom Hill said he’s fully recovered from last season’s Lisfranc injury and feels comfortable playing.
“I feel like I can do everything I need to do right now,” Hill said, via Michael Hull of the team’s official site. “It’s just being able to handle the volume that I’m going to be asked to do, so we’re just trying to gauge what that is and what that looks like. Overall, I’m very happy with where my foot is.”
As for the team’s plans to predominantly play him in the tight end role this season, Hill said he’s still “very raw” at the position and is getting accustomed to lining up in a three-point stance.
“I know some of the things they’re going to ask me to do,” Hill said. “I’m still very raw in a lot of this stuff, but it’s nice to get some exposure… I’ve never done that before. Like I said, we started from ground zero, and we just started building from there.”
Although Hill wants to play quarterback, he is willing to play at tight end and is hopeful it creates more opportunities for him to play.
“Things aren’t up to me,” Hill said. “I’m willing to do what I need to do to help us win football games… I love playing, and so it creates opportunities for me to add value and be on the field and compete… That’s the nature of the NFL. This isn’t necessarily what I want, it’s what’s best for the team and I’m good with that.”