- Jenna Laine covers the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for ESPN. She started covering the Bucs for ESPN in 2016, but she has covered the team since 2009. Follow Jenna on Twitter: @JennaLaineESPN.
TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers first-round draft pick Calijah Kancey appeared to suffer a right lower leg injury during Sunday morning’s training camp practice and was carted off the field.
Kancey, a former Pittsburgh defensive tackle who has drawn comparisons to fellow Pitt alum Aaron Donald, was turning the corner on a drill when he pulled up his right leg. He hopped forward, putting no weight on the leg. He then let out an, “Ah, f—!” as he grabbed his lower leg toward his calf.
The coaching staff, front office and teammates were thrilled with the work Kancey had done this offseason during rookie minicamp and mandatory minicamp, and it was already showing up in training camp.
“The number of ‘wow’ plays that he had in shorts was more than I was even expecting,” general manager Jason Licht said at the start of camp. “That doesn’t necessarily always translate to making a bunch of plays in the NFL his rookie season — I’m not saying that he’s going to for sure be an All-Pro his first year or anything like that. But seeing this defense kind of mold into what Todd [Bowles] really does like in that explosive, penetrating front that can get pressure up the middle, as well as off the edge, with all the tools that we have with Devin [White] and Lavonte [David], it’s going to be exciting, that’s for sure.”
Running back Rachaad White was also impressed by Kancey’s early work.
“He is a different rookie, man. He is so composed. He is a good dude, a great guy,” White said. “You can see his poise, just a guy who wants to work. He does not really say too many words every time I see him, and you can tell he is kind of to himself. Out on the field, you can see that he is explosive, quick and he got in the backfield today. It just makes you understand that you have to look out for a guy like that.”
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