Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/13/12

TAMPA, Fla. -- There are a lot of ties between the Bucs and Giants that could affect Sunday's game at MetLife Stadium.

Bucs offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan is the former Giants quarterbacks coach who worked closely with Eli Manning the past two seasons. Tampa Bay defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan had the same position with the Giants for one season several years ago and is familiar with much of their personnel.

Running back D.J. Ware was picked up by Tampa Bay two weeks ago after being released by the Giants and is the Bucs' third-down back.

Even coach Greg Schiano spent 11 seasons in New Jersey coaching at Rutgers University.

"I think Mike, yeah, that helps. Bill was a while ago, so yeah, a little bit. Me being (at Rutgers)? Absolutely zero," Schiano said. "I had a hard enough time doing my job, I couldn't watch them.

"There are certain things he can help, but we're doing a lot of things they did, too. So they know it, their whole staff knows it, they've been doing it for years. There's a lot of offensive things. I think there will be some subplots here with guys knowing stuff. But at the end of the day, it's players. So what can you convey to your players and what can they do."

The Giants have had 10 days to stew about their opening-day loss to the Dallas Cowboys. That's also three extra days to study the Bucs and their new tendencies under Schiano.

"Any time you win the Super Bowl, that's not how you want to start your season," Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said. "They have a lot of pride up there, so they're going to come out storming. They play a hard brand of football, so what they are going to do is run the ball so the line of scrimmage battle is going to be key this week."

The Panthers last week said they'd gone back and looked at Rutgers tape to get a read on Greg Schiano's defense. Manning said the Giants did the same thing.

"Just to see some similarities and what his scheme was going to be," Manning said during a conference call with Tampa Bay media. "I think the coaches went back and looked at Rutgers stuff to see if it matched up with what's going on now and get an idea of what might be coming up.

"Obviously, you have the preseason. It's a lot easier (with the Bucs) having played the first game. You have an actual real, live regular-season game to look at, unlike Carolina which probably wanted to look back so they'd have a better idea of what would come in the first game."

Sheridan spent 2005 to 2009 on the Giants staff, his final season as the defensive coordinator. Manning said the scheme being used by the Bucs clearly is not Sheridan's, but Schiano's - with a twist.

"It is a little bit more Schiano's scheme," Manning said. " ... But obviously Bill has his impact as well.

"They're very fast on defense and quick," he said. "Guys are moving around. They're bringing linebackers on blitzes. They play a pretty good bit of man coverage and trust their corners and safeties to play man on tight ends and receivers. They played outstanding last week and they've played well through the preseason."

The Bucs got huge performances from rookies Doug Martin (24 carries, 95 yards), safety Mark Barron and linebacker Lavonte David last week, limiting the Panthers to 10 yards rushing. The Giants have had trouble running the football as well.

Offensively, Tampa Bay was able to dominate time of possession and hold the football for 37 minutes versus Carolina. But the Bucs will have to make some plays in the passing game to beat the Giants, whose secondary is beat up.

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