Buccaneers safety Jermaine Phillips injured his arm during the Bucs' loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.
During Tampa Bay's 13-9 loss to Dallas, Phillips sustained what is believed to be a fractured forearm that likely will require surgery, and it is unclear how long the veteran safety will be out of the lineup.
Bucs head coach Jon Gruden would not say on Monday morning during his post-game press conference whether his starting strong safety had in fact broken his arm. Gruden only commented that he feared that the arm was broken.
"We're concerned about Jermaine Phillips' left forearm," said Gruden. "He's getting evaluated."
Gruden was asked directly if Phillips' arm was broken.
"It's being evaluated right now, but that's our fear, yes," Gruden said.
In the 2005 season, Phillips broke his right forearm. Phillips had a cast around the forearm and continued to play during that season.
"This is the other arm," said Gruden. "He's had one heck of a season for us. Hopefully it's not serious, but we are concerned."
Phillips is second on the team with 58 tackles in eight games this season. He has one interception returned for 58 yards, two tackles for a loss, four passes defensed, and one fumble recovery that he returned 38 yards for a touchdown. Phillips is in the final year of his contract with Tampa Bay, and Buccaneers officials would not confirm the surgery for Phillips.
The expected replacement for Phillips is safety Sabby Piscitelli. A second-year safety, Piscitelli missed the Week 5 game at Denver this season with a dislocated elbow. Piscitelli has 23 tackles, one tackle for a loss, one pass defensed, and one interception thus far in 2008.