According to head coach Dirk Koetter, the Bucs offensive line will be down at least one regular starter in Kansas City on Sunday.

Left guard Kevin Pamphile is still recovering from a head injury suffered two games ago against Atlanta, meaning he’ll be absent for a second straight went.

Bucs G Kevin Pamphile - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs G Kevin Pamphile – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

“He will not make it [to Kansas City],” Koetter said Friday from the practice fields at One Buc Place. “He’s not going to get out of the [concussion] protocol.”

Pamphile had played all but 14 offensive snaps at left guard leading up to last Sunday’s win against Chicago, including all 80 during the game he sustained the concussion against Atlanta. When he was inactivated last week, rookie Caleb Benenoch filled in with mixed results.

Koetter would not reveal if Benenoch is next in line to get a second straight start at left guard.

“I’ll let you know Sunday,” he said.

If the team does go with Benenoch again, the 22-year-old will be looking to bounce back from a tough first performance.

“Caleb [Benenoch], that was his first start as a rookie and it was well-documented that Caleb missed most of OTAs because of the school thing at UCLA, the semester rule,” Koetter said Monday. “And then he was hurt for a part of preseason. Caleb had kind of a rocky debut. He’s going to look back on this some day. We have very high hopes and high expectations for Caleb, but that wasn’t one of his better days.

Bucs C Joe Hawley- Photo by Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs C Joe Hawley- Photo by Cliff Welch/PR

Making last week even more challenging was almost the entire game next to another inexperienced lineman in center Ben Gottschalk. Backup Evan Smith, starting in place of the injured Joe Hawley, exited early in the first quarter with a knee injury and never returned.

Tampa Bay struggled to open up running lanes for returning starter Doug Martin and rookie Peyton Barber against the Bears, finishing the game with 80 rushing yards as a team on 30 attempts. Quarterback Jameis Winston was sacked four times and hit on one other occasion. The sack total was the second highest of the season, trailing only the five times Winston got dropped against Denver during a 27-7 home loss.

Smith’s MCL injury may keep him out of action for up to three weeks, but Hawley – also dealing with a knee issue – returned to practicing in full Thursday and should be good to go at center. Hawley started the Bucs’ first eight games before leaving midway through the Atlanta loss.

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About the Author: Eric Horchy

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Horse
Horse
5 years ago

I think that’s a mistake to bring Hawley back so fast as he will probably hurt it again then we’ll have big problems. As painful as it might be I would go with both young guys and change your offensive scheme a little. Go Bucs!

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
5 years ago

Jameis better eat his wheaties and say his prayers. He might get killed this game. Extra cardio this week. Reading the article this week about his TD’s coming from scrambling. That’s a great stat and a double edged sword. He shouldn’t HAVE to be scrambling that much. O -line better come to play this week.

scubog
scubog
Reply to  cgmaster27
5 years ago

You might need to explain to the millennials the benefit of eating your Wheaties that we baby boomers were told would make us strong. Today, the kids are more likely to want something sweet and less offensive like Fruity Pebbles or Lucky Charms.

Dbuc63
Dbuc63
Reply to  scubog
5 years ago

LOL, millennials/ snowflakes….

surferdudes
5 years ago

Horse, more then likely Hawley gets re injured in this game. I agree, if you’re not healthy enough sit out. I think it’s worse for continuity when he keeps going in, and out of games. It sucks Pamp is out again. Arrowhead is a tough place to play, someone has to step up at LG. Good luck whoever you are.