TAMPA, Fla. — Jeff Tedford could accept full-time play-calling duties soon.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith said Tedford, who had a procedure done Aug. 25 that placed two stents in an artery near his heart, was back at the team’s facility early Monday and led meetings. Smith said the Bucs are "gearing toward" Tedford being ready to resume his full responsibilities when Tampa Bay hosts the St. Louis Rams next Sunday afternoon at Raymond James Stadium.
"He was in there early this morning, full-time, ready to go, leading the meetings," Smith said. "Hopefully, we’re back on track. We need Jeff out there, of course."
Tedford, 52, has made steady progress since the procedure sidelined him near the end of the preseason. He attended practice last Friday. He was present in the press box Sunday at Raymond James Stadium during the team’s loss to the Carolina Panthers and offered some input as quarterbacks coach Marcus Arroyo called plays.
"As we talked about Jeff last week, we mentioned him being able to do a little bit more, he was able to do that last week," Smith said. "Friday’s practice, he was here, of course. In the press box (Sunday) giving a little bit of input. But we were really kind of gearing toward him being ready this week."
The Bucs’ offense struggled for most of Sunday against the Panthers. Carolina out-gained Tampa Bay 334 yards to 264, and the Bucs committed three turnovers. Quarterback Josh McCown was underwhelming in completing 22 of 35 passes for 183 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.