While not the greatest news in the world, the Buccaneers did appear to dodge a bullet, as both Gerald McCoy and LeGarrette Blount’s injuries suffered on Sunday at San Francisco are not as severe as they could have been. At least that is the word from initial reports and information provided by head coach Raheem Morris during his Monday afternoon press conference at One Buccaneer Place.
“Gerald McCoy, obviously he will be week-to-week,” Morris said. “We will have to see where he is this week. See how he moves around and everything. But he got lost fairly early in the game yesterday. One of our guys on a tackle kind of fell on the back of his ankle; got him tweaked up a little.
“I’m not sure of the technical … I don’t want to get too much into it because I don’t want to get called out in a lie. I just know he is hurt, and for me, I started shuffling pieces around on my board like I’m supposed to do and getting the next person ready to play.”
“But I’ll have more on that stuff tomorrow after some medical stuff done today with Todd Toriscelli and see where he is with movement.”
Morris didn’t sound very positive that McCoy might be able to play Sunday when the Buccaneers host the New Orleans Saints.
“I’ve seen different things come about on Thursday and Friday. Right now I’m not real motivated to say he will definitely play this week but I’m not ready to count him out either.”
If McCoy is unable to go, Morris and his defensive coaches are already formulating backup plans.
“Brian (Price) at the nose tackle gives us a lot of production,” Morris said. “ We have Frank Okam we can throw in there at the three-technique. We also have the flexibility of putting big (Da’Quan) Bowers in there to give us some of the explosive stuff we lose from McCoy if we do lose McCoy.
The redesign of the defensive line also created some roster shuffling today.
“We cut [tight end] Collin Franklin. Hopefully we will be able to get him back later. And then we were able to [call up from the practice squad] George Johnson so he can be a backup right defensive end. And then we have our backup left end go to Tim Crowder, so we don’t lose what we get from Bowers."
Morris was stoic in his press conference, seemingly not showing much emotion when discussing the possibility of losing McCoy for any extended duration. But he did address what the team loses when McCoy is not on the field.
“His initial get off, getting off the ball, causing disruption was clearly evident yesterday (missing) once he left the game. The thing he does well is to get off the ball, cause disruption and disrupt runs. He left in the second series and was playing lights out up until that point. He will be missed.
“We have a next man up theory for us. Another opportunity for someone else to play. Frank Okam went in there last year and played well versus this team [New Orleans]. Hopefully we can get the same type of production out of Frank Okam and a little bit better out of Bowers. So those two can form [together] and be better than we have with McCoy.”
“[Blount] is another guy who left the game early and got some nicks,” Morris said. “I don’t want to rule him out. But I’m not looking at him to … do whatever – it is what it is. This will be next man up, or he will be ready to go and play and practice for us.
“I want to get some more detailed information about Blount for you. I’m not really sure how he [will be listed on injury report]. If he practices on Wednesday then I will call him day-to-day. If he doesn’t, then we will see.”