Buccaneers Safety T.J. Ward, Defensive Tackle Chris Baker Upset Over Playing Time

T.J. Ward is not a fan of the Buccaneers' rotation of safeties.
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Buccaneers safety T.J. Ward said he is upset over his playing time after Tampa Bay lost its third consecutive game Sunday, dropping its record to 2-4.

Tampa Bay has been using a rotation in its secondary to utilize Ward and fellow safeties Chris Conte, Justin Evans and Keith Tandy because of their different skill sets, but Ward is not a fan of that approach.

"I came here to be an impact player," Ward said according to Jenna Laine of ESPN.com. "I can't do that that if I'm not on the field."

The three-time Pro Bowler added that he was at his "wit's end" and that only defensive coordinator Mike Smith or coach Dirk Koetter could explain why he has not been used more.

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"I did not come here to rotate," Ward said. "I did not come here to be a part-time player."

The Buccaneers brought in Ward on one-year, $5 million deal after he was released by the Broncos this offseason.

After the story came out that Ward was upset over his playing time, defensive lineman Chris Baker quoted a tweet with the story and said he had similar feelings to Ward. Baker is also new to Tampa Bay this season. He signed a three-year deal to join the Buccaneers this offseason after spending five years in Washington.

Before Sunday's 30-27 loss to the Bills, Smith said each week the Buccaneers would try to use the safeties in different ways because of the amount of depth they have at the position, and pointed to Ward's injuries this season and the practices he's missed as part of the reason he isn't taking all the defensive snaps.

Ward and Baker are both 30 and in their eighth year in the league.