The Buccaneers may have both Donovan Smith and Justin Evans available for Week 1 against the New Orleans Saints.
According to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are hopeful both safety Justin Evans and tackle Donovan Smith will be available for the season opener against New Orleans.
Smith and Evans are valuable pieces for the Bucs. Evans is by far the most talented safety on the roster, and the Bucs don’t have a viable replacement to protect the quarterback’s blindside if Smith misses extended time.
Both players were carted off during Tuesday’s practice. Causing serious concern throughout the Bucs faithful.
The injury to Smith looked severe. When an offensive lineman comes down with a leg injury, it’s usually bad news.
Thankfully, it appears they will both be ready to go by Week 1.
Smith has yet to miss a game in a Bucs uniform. While he does take his fair share of flak, he has been a staple along the line.
In his rookie season, Evans became the lone bright spot among the safeties. He played in 14 games and three interceptions and 49 tackles. Without Evans, Drew Brees and company would be looking to shred the Bucs deep down the field.
Stricken with minor injuries throughout camp, Tampa Bay has still been fortunate. To this point, significant injuries haven’t taken their toll.
Although depth has been a concern during the preseason, this is the time to have pesky injuries. The preseason is the perfect time to allow players extra rest. At the same time, it gives the backups an extended look.