Heading into the 2018 season opener without a team’s top cornerback is never ideal, especially when that team is playing against future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees at his stadium, the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.

But that’s exactly where the Tampa Bay Buccaneers find themselves as veteran cornerback Brent Grimes is doubtful to play on Sunday with a groin injury. The 35-year old Grimes is a key piece in defensive coordinator Mike Smith’s defense, and that will likely force the Bucs to start rookie cornerbacks Carlton Davis and M.J. Stewart on Sunday, along with third-year cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III. Ryan Smith, who also started at cornerback last year, but struggled in the preseason, is an option, as is newcomer De’Vante Harris, who previously played in New Orleans.

Grimes and Hargreaves are the only cornerbacks that have interceptions in their careers, so the Bucs secondary will be extremely light on experience battling Brees and wide receivers Michael Thomas and Ted Ginn, Jr.

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Scott Reynolds is in his 24th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his son's Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]

16 COMMENTS

  1. This could be a problem. Well, the new guys are going to get tested early obviously. I still say that if the Defensive line is improved, our secondary will have it a lot easier.

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  2. Thats horrible luck, but all isn’t lost. Next man up! As long as they don’t start Ryan Smith at corner we’ll have a chance lol I’m really glad Licht drafted 2 corners this past draft, hope they do great Sunday! Go Bucs!

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    Rating: +13. From 13 votes.
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  3. I am going to bet this groin injury will hinder him all year. Which goes back to my previous objection of even bringing him back this year. We should have signed EJ Gaines or Breshaun Breeland instead

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    • We could have signed both Gaines and Vonte Davis for less than what Grimes is making.

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      Rating: +7. From 13 votes.
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  4. Really. For 2 mil more we could have signed both Vonte Davis and Tyrann Mathieu. Our secondary would be looking great right now.

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  5. No excuse not to press now. None.

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  6. Scott’s Fab 5 talked about how we dodged a bullet not hiring Gruden because of his love for older players, yet was O.K. with over paying Grimes calling him our best corner. I agree with my fellow posters, it was time to move on. His play last year showed he wasn’t worth bringing back. Horrible in run support, and oft injured. When he didn’t participate in OTA’s no big deal, but he hardly practiced during camp, and we didn’t even see if he still had legs during preseason. All we heard was he was in fantastic shape, didn’t need the work, and he was defying father time. This just in, father time is undefeated. Expecting a 35 yr old corner to come off the couch with no training camp, no preseason games wasn’t well thought out. I hope Licht picked the right corners in this draft. We’re going to find out sooner then we would’ve liked.

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  7. Tyrann Mathieu wanted to play for a great Defense. He also had many offers but wanted to play for Houston. Anybody can have a pulled groin. Hargreaves has had a few already in his short career. Not every FA wants to be a Buc. GO BUCS!!!

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  8. Maybe having him sit out most of training camp wasn’t such a great idea

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    Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
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  9. Newcomer CB De’Vante Harris, who previously played in New Orleans, is no longer an option at corner. He, like Grimes, is also listed as doubtful with a hamstring injury.

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  10. Not all is lost, agree some bad luck for conservative Bucs coaching but the potential good is to see three young corners thrown into the fire! This might achieve the desired effect the fans are seeking, in getting DC Smith to be more aggressive?! Press the corners and pressure Brees with an attacking Defense! Send Kwon and David and make our new D-line step up! I really believe the worse luck is not having Vea?! Sadly looks like not recovering from calf strain but clearly looks like he is dealing with a calf tear, which should be recovered ~6 weeks. Maybe back for Eagles?! Anyway, no holding back now, if sit back and are passive, new corners will be exposed. Probably will be anyway with Brees, but he is going to make many DBs look like rookies? Go Bucs!!!

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  11. On a positive note, I’m glad Carlton Davis and MJ Stewart will get the opportunity to play against Brees; best way to improve is to go against one of the best. Go Bucs!

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  12. Good morning, how many people making these not so nice comments on here work for the Buccaneers? I hope you never get a groin injury, yes my son is 35 and anyone can get an injury at any age. Back off because you don’t know Grimes like I do and he doesn’t deserve some of the comments from so called fans of the Buccaneers.

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    • Debrah Halll….aka Miko Grimes. Just kidding…..there was no profanity

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  13. Horse, I like the way you think. Don’t know if I’m excited about it like you are but it’s a hell of a lot better than the rest of these doom and gloomer lounge chair GMs.
    Tyrann Mathieu? Hasn’t he missed a bunch of games the last two years and you think he is a viable replacement.
    Besides, he is a safety which is why he gets hurt so much because of his smallish size.
    Great idea.

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    • Yes you are correct. I rather have Grimes in, but since he can’t I’m glad that Davis and Stewart are going to get some experience; that’s a good thing for our future.

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