Bucs head coach Raheem Morris acknowledged that rookie WR Arrelious Benn will head to injured reserve as a result of a knee injury he suffered on Sunday in Tampa Bay's 38-15 win over Seattle. Benn is the eighth starter to head to IR and the fourth member of the 2010 draft class to wind up on IR.
The Buccaneers beat the visiting Seattle Seahawks, 38-15, but it didn’t come without a price. Rookie wide receiver Arrelious Benn, who was the second of Tampa Bay’s two second-round picks this year, suffered a torn knee ligament after taking a helmet to his left knee from Seahawks cornerback Marcus Trufant. Benn, one of the team’s starting receivers, had caught a 16-yard pass from Freeman at the 14:27 mark in the second half when he succumbed to the injury.
Bucs head coach Raheem Morris said that Benn is out for the season.
“Arrelious is going to be out,” Morris said. “He’s probably going to have to go to IR (injured reserve). It’s something torn. I don’t know yet. I got it from [head trainer] Todd [Toriscelli], but I just forgot what was torn exactly. He has some torn ligament stuff in his knee.”
Benn finished Sunday’s game with one catch for 16 yards and two special teams tackles that helped contain Seattle’s Leon Washington. His rookie campaign concludes with 25 catches for 394 yards and two touchdowns. Benn also had six carries for 35 yards.
Replacing Benn will either be veterans Micheal Spurlock or Maurice Stovall, who had three catches for 12 yards and his first touchdown of the season against Seattle, or rookie Dezmon Briscoe, who caught his first two passes in the NFL and finished with 28 yards on Sunday.
“Everybody left the [stadium] yesterday with a catch,” Morris said. “All hands on deck – and we meant it. Dezmon Briscoe got out there in his first game. It wasn’t too big for him. Spurlock has gone out there every week and contributed. Stovall came out and caught a touchdown. It was a nice little bounce-back story for him. Talk about resiliency.”
Morris said that he was sad to see Benn’s season end so abruptly and that he will have to spend a portion of the offseason rehabbing instead of getting better as a football player.
“It is no more sour for the fact that I know how what Rejus was going to be able to do this offseason because of how he works,” Morris said. “Now he’s going to spend some time rehabbing and doing some of those things for his knee in order to come back to where he was. I’m more discouraged about the fact that I know he was going to be able to grow in the offseason in the offense and work with guys. There’s just something about throwing with Josh Freeman every day. These guys have a unique chemistry and there was going to be a new wave of guys that came in that were going to be able to join him in Mike Williams, Rejus and Briscoe. I’m more sad for him because I know how he likes to work.”
Benn becomes the fourth member of the team's 2010 draft class to head to IR, joining defensive tackles Brian Price and Gerald McCoy and free safety Cody Grimm. Benn is also the eighth Tampa Bay starter to wind up on injured reserve this season.
Starting fullback Earnest Graham also suffered an injury against Seattle. He injured his neck in the second quarter and was replaced by rookie Erik Lorig, but will not be placed on IR, according to Morris.
“Graham has a neck injury,” Morris said. “He just got capped off on by one of the Seattle players. He’s week-to-week. Hopefully we have week-to-week so we’ll get a chance to see what is going on with him later on. … It was a stinger or neck issue.”
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