By RICK STROUD
© St. Petersburg Times,
published September 12, 2001
TAMPA -- Receiver Keyshawn Johnson received treatment Tuesday morning and afternoon for the deep thigh bruise on his right leg sustained in the first half of Sunday's 10-6 win over Dallas.
Johnson, who has not missed a start since his rookie season with the Jets, said he expects to play if Sunday's game against the Eagles is played as scheduled.
"I might not practice (today) or Thursday," Johnson said. "But if I can do something by Friday or Saturday, I'll be okay. I can't miss this game."
UPSETTING: The Bucs' close call with the Cowboys and the Ravens' temporary struggle against the Bears were just some of the surprises in Week 1. But none was more shocking than the Vikings' loss at home to Carolina, or perhaps Miami's upset of Tennessee in Nashville.
"It's easy to say this team is not going to be very good, this team is; this team should be a Super Bowl contender and this team won't," Bucs coach Tony Dungy said. "You saw games that were very interesting and some upsets. But I think that's just the way it's going to be and I think it's going to be eight or 10 weeks before we sort out who's good and who isn't.
"You can't take anything for granted. Tennessee doesn't lose at home and they lose at home. Minnesota hasn't lost home openers in ages and they lose the home opener. So you can't rely on, "We're playing this team, so we should win. We're playing at home so we should win. We're playing a team that didn't make the playoffs last year, so we should win.' Every game you've got to go out and win it."
TOUGH ENOUGH: Quarterback Brad Johnson paid the price for some of his 35 passing attempts against the Cowboys.
Johnson was sacked only twice, but he took some hits after delivering the football.
"I feel sore, like usual," Johnson said. "That's the norm every Sunday."
Offensive coordinator Clyde Christensen said Johnson might have taken too much punishment.
"Nobody will ever question his toughness, never have, never will," Christensen said. "But he took a few hits that he didn't need to. He probably should've just gotten rid of the ball and thrown it away a few times. There's no sense in getting hurt trying to do too much."
RUNNING ON EMPTY: Christensen said the biggest disappointment from the opener was the lack of a potent running game. He credited Dallas, however, for its commitment to stop the run.
"For us to run 33 times and have a long run of 8, that's not us," Christensen said. "I kept waiting for Warrick (Dunn) to squirt through there one time."
Dunn finished with 56 yards on 22 carries.