Is Bruce Arians the coach he was hired to be in Tampa Bay?
When rookie cornerback Jamel Dean was thrust into his first NFL start against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 9 he wasn’t ready, playing just three defensive snaps up to that point in the season. But a pregame injury suffered by starting cornerback Carlton Davis forced Dean into the starting lineup where he was picked on, allowing three touchdowns and almost 200 receiving yards in coverage.
It was largely a game to forget, but Dean harnessed that feeling and began arriving early to the Buccaneers’ practice facility to get extra film work in with defensive coordinator Todd Bowles the following week.
So when when the Arizona Cardinals traveled to Raymond James, though Dean wasn’t given the starting nod, he entered the game when Vernon Hargreaves – who would be waived shortly the following Tuesday – was benched due to a lack of hustle. The film study surely seemed fruitful as the young defensive back allowed just one reception for a loss of two yards and even played the hero role, coming up with a late interception off of Kyler Murray that allowed Tampa Bay’s offense to drive the field and score the game-winning touchdown.
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