St. Petersburg Times Online: Sports
TampaBay.com
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
tampabay.com

printer version

Sapp's loss: 27 pounds

By ROGER MILLS

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 29, 2001


TAMPA -- He's still Big Daddy, but just a bit lighter.

Twenty-seven pounds, to be exact.

Defensive tackle Warren Sapp, the driving force of Tampa Bay's strong defense, didn't just shed a few pounds before minicamp, he lost an entire 2-year-old. Sapp played at 330 pounds last season.

"I played 1,010 plays last year at 330 pounds, nobody said I could do it, and I put up 161/2 sacks," Sapp said. "I just cut off 27 pounds and we're going to see what we've got.

"I don't know, wherever (the weight) goes, it goes. ... We're in Florida, I can't do anything but come out here and prepare myself for the best season I could possibly have and wherever (the points) go, they go."

Sapp said he's probably most effective around 290 pounds and plans to work toward that goal.

Coach Tony Dungy said he's aware of Sapp's weight loss but said the All-Pro tackle had a good 2000 season at 330 pounds.

"I just think that Warren's a unique player in the league," Dungy said. "He's been the defensive player of the year, he's been a Pro Bowl player. When he's on top of his game, he can be the best defensive player in the league.

"So, to be successful and get where we want to go, I think he understands (what's needed). He and I talk usually at the beginning of every year and we set goals, individual and team goals, and we haven't had that talk yet. But he had 16 1/2 sacks last year and it's going to have to be higher."

SIMEON SAYS: Defensive end Simeon Rice seems to have fit in with his new teammates almost immediately. And coming from the Arizona Cardinals, he also seems to be enjoying the weather.

"It was a nice stay, in the Sunshine State, you couldn't ask for better," Rice said. "This time in Arizona it's 110 degrees. It's definitely something I expect to grow into. It's definitely a euphoric situation."

For the second straight day, Rice opened the scrimmages matched up against rookie left tackle Kenyatta Walker. It should prove an interesting matchup all the way through the end of training camp.

"I think he's going to learn but I think I definitely can help him just going against him every day in practice," Rice said. "I'm going to show him different looks and he's going to evolve because he's a pretty good player. They drafted a really good player, they see something in him."

STARTING AT SAFETY: Big things are happening for third-year safety Dexter Jackson. With Damien Robinson signing with the Jets, Jackson entered minicamp as the starter for the first time and said he feels a little different.

"Your goal every year is to come in and be able to compete for the No. 1 spot," Jackson said Friday. "But this year, with Damien going to the Jets, my opportunity has come up and I just want to come out and show that I'm capable of holding down the position and helping the team win."

Last season, Robinson started all 16 regular-season games and the playoff game. Jackson finished with 30 tackles.

"I see it as a reward for hard work and dedication," Jackson said. "That's why you put in the work and sweat, take the bruises, to be No. 1, and it's paying off now. My job now, since I have it, is to try to keep it."

THE RIGHT APPROACH: Veteran Pete Pierson, who lost his starting position to Walker, was his usual upbeat self and said he plans to offer every ounce of support he can to the rookie.

"I think he has to know that I'm not bitter toward him for what happened," Pierson said. "I know how hard it is. It's a tough position to start off as a rookie. He's got a lot of stuff he has to learn in a short period of time. We all have to help him. The more we can help him along, the better off all of us will be."

After starting 15 games last season and platooning with George Hegamin, Pierson said the bright side is the Bucs have depth at tackle.

"I don't see any other way you can approach it," Pierson said. "Anything other than that is not beneficial to the team. I've been a backup for a long time and if that's what they want me to do back there, I know the role. I'm going to be supportive ... and just be ready because there's just no telling what can happen."

BUCS BITS: Linebacker Jeff Gooch (pelvic bone) and safety John Lynch (shoulder) sat out practice as a precautionary measure. Cornerback Brian Kelly did not practice after having arthroscopic knee surgery Friday. Tight end Todd Yoder (dehydration) left the field during the afternoon practice. Receiver Khori Ivy (hip flexor) sat out the afternoon session.

Back to Sports
Back to Top

© 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
Contact the Times | Privacy Policy
Standard of Accuracy | Terms, Conditions & Copyright
 

From the Times sports desk

Devil Rays
  • Rays coup was months in the making
  • Rays triumph by being less sloppy
  • Little faults add up with Rays fans
  • Rays tales

  • Bucs/NFL
  • Sapp: 'Let's go play ball'
  • Dungy after better play by defense
  • Sapp's loss: 27 pounds
  • NFL briefs

  • Running
  • Trio's tight finish caps storybook race
  • Montgomery finish shocks herself
  • Hayden's first Cup is trying

  • NBA playoffs
  • Orlando extends its series

  • Letters
    Mutiny
  • Mutiny flat in Chicago loss

  • Soccer
  • Janss: WUSA start 'unbelievable'

  • Lightning
  • Lecavalier, 21, on top of the Worlds

  • Baseball
  • Baseball this week on TV
  • NL briefs
  • Baseball briefs
  • AL briefs
  • 'Ballplayer' Johnson is manager's MVP
  • McHale noncommittal about interest in Rays
  • 0-FOR-'01
  • Working for his walks
  • Ownership turmoil has Lopez in limbo
  • Twins may be built for long haul

  • Motorsports
  • Earnhardt fan plans blood drive
  • Auto racing briefs

  • Outdoors
  • Two rods plus a pier add up to big kings

  • Et cetera
  • Horse racing briefs
  • Sports briefs
  • Highs and lows
  • Golf briefs

  • Preps
  • Dragon's dream close to fruition
  • Eight elite teams, one survivor


  • From the wire

    From the state sports wire
  • Jacksonville's Spicer placed on IR after leg surgery
  • FIU-Western Kentucky game postponed because of Jeanne
  • Brown anxious to face old team for first time
  • Dolphins' desperate defense readies for Roethlisberger
  • Former Sarasota lineman sheds tough-guy image with Michigan
  • Rothstein rejoins Heat as assistant
  • No. 16 Florida has history on its side against Kentucky
  • FSU and Clemson QBs both off to slow starts