Sunday, September 29, 2002

Rehberg's challenge: Deny Sapp

By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Tampa Bay presents one of the NFL's most dynamic and talented defensive lines. The Buccaneers have 10 sacks, including two by Warren Sapp, who often lines up on the left side.

        Today, Sapp will often face Bengals reserve guard Scott Rehberg. Starter Mike Goff is out with a lacerated knee.

        The Bengals offensive line's play will have to be lifted from its performance in the first three weeks. The Bengals have given up 11 sacks in their three losses.

        The pressure will be on Rehberg, who has 23 NFL starts, to keep Sapp off quarterback Akili Smith. Sapp has the ability to take over a game by himself.

        Complicating matters is the play of free-floating Bucs defensive end Simeon Rice, who had the first of four Tampa Bay interceptions of St. Louis Rams QB Kurt Warner on Monday night. Rice also added a sack, a career-high three passes defensed and a forced fumble.

        Tampa Bay's front four is so talented - tackle Anthony McFarland and end Greg Spires are the other starters - that the Bucs don't have to blitz to pressure the quarterback. They can leave linebackers and defensive backs in pass coverage.


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