Donald Penn wins game of chicken with Bucs

Right about now, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are saying all the right things about left tackle Donald Penn.

The team announced via its Twitter account that a longterm extension for the veteran has been finalized. Penn is headed out on to the practice field, a good sign after the Bucs headed to training camp not knowing if they would have blindside protection for young quarterback Josh Freeman.

In the staredown, that didn’t last too long, Penn clearly was victorious. That should make the Bucs winners in the long run. Penn had refused all offseason to sign a restricted free agent tender for $3.168 million. In mid-June, the front office lowered the offer by $100,000. That was about the time that critical comments by general manager Mark Dominik to a group of season-ticket holders were splashed in the press. Dominik essentially said the team wasn’t investing in Penn because he was a slob.

Now, that has changed. Rick Stroud of the St. Petersburg Times reported the deal would likely be close to the $60 million, six-year contracts Jordan Gross in Carolina and D’Brickashaw Ferguson of the New York Jets received.

In the end, the Bucs are taking care of a player that has been good to them. Now, he needs to reward the club.

Follow me on Twitter: BradBiggs

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