Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson defends a pass to Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett last week.
Despite all the talk about the philosophy of whether top cornerbacks should shadow top receivers all the time – thanks to the Josh Norman/Antonio Brown game earlier this week – Patrick Peterson said it really hasn't been a topic of conversation between him and the coaches.
"For the most part I think I'm going to be in my same role as last year, having the opportunity to guard those No. 1
receivers," Peterson said, knowing the Buccaneers are rolling into Arizona this weekend with stud wideout Mike Evans.
But the Bucs also have veteran Vincent Jackson catching passes, and the Cardinals have rookie Brandon Williams on the other side.
"At the end of the day, doesn't matter who you put me on, because they're going to attack the rookie to see how he's living," Peterson said. "Nowadays most teams have two solid receivers, so we can't hide him."
Defensive coordinator James Bettcher said there will be situations where Peterson stays with Evans, but times when he will not. Some will be dictated with how the Buccaneers use both receivers, whom Peterson called "trees" thanks to the 6-foot-5 height for both.
Bettcher also made clear Peterson will "travel" with some receivers this season.
"When you have a guy special like Pat, with his skillset, we'll find a way to make everything else work around it," Bettcher said.
BUCANNON BOTHERED BY EDELMAN HIT
The news came out Thursday that Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman was fined $23,409 for a hit on a defenseless player in the Cardinals game, which turned out to be a launch at the head of moneybacker . There was no penalty
flagged on the play, which was a 21-yard short pass to running back James White that got the Patriots away from their own 8-yard line.
"If anyone on the defense would've done that, they probably would've ejected us, know what I'm saying?" said Bucannon, who was surprised to hear Edelman planned to appeal.
"I've got to go on to the next play so I wasn't whining about it," Bucannon added. "It is what it is. Offensive players are always complaining about us doing that to them, so I feel like he should be conscious enough not to do something like that.
"At the same time, football is a physical thing. I love being physical, so I can't blame someone else for being physical too. He could've just gone about a different way of doing it."
MATHIEU GETS DAY OFF; MATHIS, NELSON RETURN
Defensive coordinator James Bettcher said safety Tyrann Mathieu did not practice Thursday as a scheduled day off with the team inside practicing on turf. Bettcher also said Mathieu will eventually play more in his former role in the slot as opposed to the deep safety he's at right now as he plays his way back on the field after ACL surgery.
"We'll keep working the packages and keep doing things to get him in the best possible position to do what he does best, which is wreck games," Bettcher said.
The Cardinals did get guard Evan Mathis (foot) and receiver J.J. Nelson (shoulder) back working on a limited basis. But linebacker Kevin Minter (ankle) and wide receiver Jaron Brown (ankle) were added to the injury report as well as limited. Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (knee) and running back Stepfan Taylor (knee) were also limited. Linebacker Kareem Martin (knee) and defensive tackle Frostee Rucker (knee) remained sidelined.
For the Buccaneers, defensive end Robert Ayers was added to the injury report as limited with an ankle injury. Everyone else practiced fully.
NANCY BIDWILL TO BE HONORED ON HELMETS
The Cardinals will have the initials "NJB" on stickers on their helmets for the duration of the season to honor Nancy Bidwill, the late wife of owner Bill Bidwill, who passed away last month.