Press Pass: Barrett Ruud

In this edition of "Press Pass," Bucs linebacker Barrett Ruud talks about Peyton Manning, Vince Young and the effect of safety Tanard Jackson's big hit on Dallas Clark last Sunday.

Certainly Monday was a bad game, but you're sitting and three and two and you're not in bad shape, right?

Yeah, it's one of those games where you have to learn from it but you have to put it behind you real quick. You have to realize that guy we played against, that quarterback (Peyton Manning) is pretty impressive. He does that to a lot of people. We could have done some things better. But you have to learn from it and move on as quickly as you can.

What do you think about the Titans this week?

Honestly I haven't seen them play that much. I know about Vince Young and what he can do. I guess he's passing the ball pretty well, too. Everyone knows he's a tremendous runner, but it seems he's controlling the game pretty well, too. They have two pretty good running backs that I know, Chris Brown and LenDale White. They're both pretty good and they're pretty similar. Both are downhill runners and physical. Every week is a big challenge.

What do you think about coming back home?

That'll be nice. It's always nice to get back and play at home. It really helps the defense, too. I think that's where the home-field advantage pays off, on the defensive side.

You've had to game plan for Michael Vick twice a year for the past few years. Do you think that experience can be an asset when preparing for a player like Vince Young who, while different, has many of the same capabilities?

I think you have to take the same philosophy in that you have to have someone that will watch him (Young). You have to keep your eyes on the quarterback for that scramble. That's the thing that defenses don't plan for is a quarterback scrambling and you have to take that into account when you play a guy as athletic as Vince Young.

People may look at his numbers and not be overwhelmed, but what does he bring to the table?

I know him from college and I've watched him a little bit in the pros, like on Monday Night Football last week. The thing is he knows his reads, he knows where he wants to go with the ball and the difference between him and some other quarterbacks is that when he doesn't get his first read, he's probably more likely to take off running than he is to go to his third or fourth read.

The whole week last week you heard Peyton Manning this, and Peyton Manning that. After seeing the guy up close, what were your observations?

What he does, first of all, is control the offense. He's coordinating it and he doesn't put his team in a bad play. Then as far as coverage what I really saw was how patient he was. I think I saw him go long once or twice down the middle. He tried one on me and Tanard (Jackson) picked it and he tried another one on the seams on Dallas Clark and Tanard made a big hit on him. After that he was pretty content to check it and take what we gave him. That's exactly what he did. He found the hole in every defense we played.

Do you feel like a loss like this gives you an edge going into a game like this against Tennessee?

You have to take a look at what you did real hard and improve on it. I don't know if it will give you an edge.

Do you think you guys fell off at all yesterday in terms of the tackling and the swarming to the ball?

It's tough to say. I didn't see the tape yet. On the run plays, it was a situation where we might have been a little out of our (run) fits and stuff. But it was a different type of running game. It was more on the edge. Like I said, he's always going to put them in a good play. They only run when they have seven men in the box. When it's eight men in the box, he's going to throw. He puts them in a lot of good plays. I know we could have done a better job stopping the run. He's going to get his passing yards, but we could have done a better job stopping the run.

Regarding the big hit that Tanard put on Dallas Clark, what do you say to him after that?

It's a pickup. He made two huge plays in that game. He made the pick and the hit. It lifts you up. You get excited seeing stuff like that. As a middle linebacker it's very comforting knowing that when you run up the middle you have your safety watching your back. I loved it.

Was that the kind of game where you look at a rookie (like Jackson) and say, ‘Well, he's not a rookie anymore'?

I actually though that about him a few games back. It wasn't that I didn't think he was a good player. I knew that just from watching him in the preseason. One time he called out a check that me and (Derrick) Brooks were sleeping on, and he called it out and I was like, ‘OK, this guy is on it. He's on the details.' And that's what you like to see. He's a quiet, laid-back guy who likes to sit back and watch things and he learns. He soaks everything in. I think he's going to be a real good player for a long time.

How about this run of injuries at the running back spot, Barrett??

That's frustrating. I don't if I've been on a team where this many running backs got hurt. And these are serious injuries, too. Pitt (Michael Pittman), I didn't hear how long he was going to be out but I heard it's not a good situation. It's frustrating. The last three years we've had some pretty bad looking injuries.


Bucs Blitz Top Stories