Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik provided an injury update on Josh Freeman's broken thumb during a Monday afternoon press conference. Although Dominik is pleased with Freeman's approach to rehab, he said that Tampa Bay is interested in acquiring another quarterback for the remaining two games.
Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik said that while the prognosis for quarterback Josh Freeman's broken thumb has not changed and that Tampa Bay's starter will miss the next two preseason games, the team will be looking to sign another quarterback this week.
“We are certainly considering that right now,” said Dominik. “We are looking into it. Probably guys who are familiar to our system would be the guys [that we would target].”
Although he prefers to have a quarterback that is somewhat familiar with Tampa Bay's style of offense, Dominik ruled out the signing of former Bucs veteran signal caller Jeff Garcia. Jevan Snead, who was signed as an undrafted free agent in late April could be an option, and the New York Jets have been rumored to be shopping backup QB Kellen Clemens.
Dominik said that the team was excited about the play of Josh Johnson and Rudy Carpenter, who both threw touchdown passes against Kansas City on Saturday night.
“You deal with [injuries] in every aspect of the game and I think every sport handles injuries the same way – it’s just part of the nature of the beast,” Dominik said. “You just continue to prepare the guys behind them. I think the coaching staff has done a very good job with the two young quarterbacks in Josh Johnson and Rudy Carpenter. I think the both played their best games this last week and so you just have prepare the guys behind them as if that were to happen.”
Freeman broke the tip of his right thumb during the first quarter of Tampa Bay's 20-15 loss to Kansas City on Saturday night when his throwing hand hit the helmet of Chiefs outside linebacker Tamba Hali. Bucs head coach Raheem Morris, who was unable to attend Monday's press conference due to stomach flu, said Saturday night that Freeman should be able to return to practice the week of the 2010 regular season opener and start against Cleveland on September 12.
“Right now, we are still with the same statement – that we’re confident and excited about him being able to be prepared for week one,” Dominik said. “He’s been in here the last couple of days getting training and rehab. Right now, it’s just a matter of his body rehabbing and re-healing to be ready to go Week One.”
Dominik acknowledged that whenever Freeman returns to the starting lineup he will have to fight through the pain that will come from his thumb, as it may not be fully healed until the end of the 2010 regular season.
“He’ll have to play with some pain,” said Dominik. “It is a broken bone in his thumb, so he just has to have that actually fuse back together. But, it’s a lot about the swelling, it’s about being able to grasp the football, being able to hold on to it and be accurate with the ball. This week he’s going to be extremely limited to almost doing nothing just to give him a chance to get his body healthy and we’ll move forward from there.
"Josh Freeman has taken this on just like he has the entire preseason. I walked downstairs and it might have been 6:30 a.m. and he was already in there icing his thumb. It's important to him. It's so important to him. That's what is exciting and that's why we have the confidence in him, and we have the confidence in him as an organization that he will be out there against the Cleveland Browns."
Copyright © 2011 Pewter Report, PewterReport.com and Pewter Insider. All rights reserved. PewterReport.com, the official site of Pewter Report, is an independent source of news and commentary and is not affiliated with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or the NFL.