Bucs TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Taking away the leading receiver in yardage and in touchdown receptions from a new offense with a rookie quarterback isn’t the ideal scenario for any team trying to get on a two-game winning streak for the first time since 2013. But that most likely is what the Bucs are facing with reports that Austin Seferian-Jenkins could miss 4-6 weeks with a shoulder strain suffered on Sunday against the Saints.
The Bucs have yet to officially confirm that Seferian-Jenkins is out for any extended period of time.
Lovie Smith played a little cat and mouse on Wednesday regarding Seferian-Jenkins’s availability for the upcoming game against the Texans, while also addressing the other tight ends on the roster.
“I think right now we know we have pretty good depth,” Smith said. “Luke Stocker has done a good job for us. He’s a good football player. Of course, Brandon Myers same thing. For us, we’ve had Cameron Brate around here for a long time. We know what he can do. Today we were missing a very good football player and if he can’t go this week, we’ll have to make adjustments. If he can’t go this week.”
Jameis Winston spoke like a player who knew he would be missing his favorite target when he discussed the loss of Seferian-Jenkins on Wednesday.
“Not only will I miss him on the field, but he’s a great friend of mine,” Winston said. “But at the end of the day I’m thinking positive. We don’t really know his situation for real, so if we can get him, great. If we can’t we’ve got some great tight ends, Luke Stocker, Brandon Myers and Cameron Brate’s back. He traded us and went to the Saints and then came back and we’re glad to have him back.
“We put in time off the field in the offseason so we had that connection going in. We prepared for that. But he’s just a great tight end. He’s big, long and very athletic.”
Offensive Dirk Koetter told the media in attendance at One Buc on Wednesday that injuries happen and teams have to adjust.
“Well that’s just something that, as you go through the season different guys get banged up and are less than 100 percent at different times, so you count on the depth of your team,” Koetter said. “You’ve all told me and we’ve talked about it before that we have different play makers and, hey, that’s the NFL. Your next tight end has to be ready to play. That doesn’t mean we have to design our whole game plan around that guy. Your game plan should always be designed to try to get the ball to our play makers, but also is somewhat dictated by the defense and what style they play.”
While the Bucs have what they feel is acceptable depth at the position, Koetter did admit that Sefernian-Jenkins and tight end Luke Stocker are two different type of players.
“Different skill set between Luke and Austin, different types of guys – Luke is very valuable to our team, does a lot of the dirty work,” Koetter said. “And sure, you would always like to reward that work by letting him touch the ball. Those are different animals right there. We’re all looking for those tight ends that can do everything, run like a receiver and block like a tackle. But those guys are hard to find. I’m a huge tight end guy myself.
“I’m a fan of all the tight ends we have. And I’m excited that we got Cameron Brate. We got him back after all the secrets he told New Orleans, we got him back after a week. I like all of our tight ends and we’ll figure that part out.”
Backup tight end Brandon Myers told PewterReport.com the others on the position room are eager to prove what they can do.
“It isn’t necessarily a chip on our shoulders, we are just excited to have an opportunity to make plays, help the guys out and move the chains,” Myers said. “Everybody in our room know what we are capable of doing, so it just about staying ready and then being ready, when they call our number.”
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at email@example.com
myers will as much as asj or more……brandon myers is a very serviceable TE
This s why fellow Bucs Fans piss me of with their lack of insight and knowledge of their own team. What did Meyers ever do in his career to make you think he is a good TE, what did he do last yr for us? He is also a terrible blocker which so maybe that was your comparison he does have in common with ASJ
agreed- they need to improve their blocking desperately. Myers isnt going to scare the jockstrap off of any texans defenders…interesting to see if Swearinger brings a little extra intensity Sunday. Would like to see ASJ get in football shape; he has a big body but isnt very imposing..injured alot too
SOMETIMES IT TAKES A SPECIAL QB TO BRING OUT YOUR TALENT. JOSH MCCOWN WAS THE QB LAST YEAR. ASJ DOESN’T BREAK THE BANK IN GAMES
BTW LETS SEE ASJ PLAY A ENTIRE SEASON BEFORE WE ACT LIKE HES SOMEBODY
I’d say 79 catches for 806 yards and 4 TDs with Oakland shows be can be a serviceable tight end. And 522 yards with the Giants the following year isn’t too shabby.
Jameis lost his #1 target over 2 weeks. But he gained his new #1 target in Evans so I think we’ll be ok. Go Bucs!
I hope Tampa will look the waiver wire and pickup another young TE that will be successful with Tampa Bay Bucs
Fans need to be cautiously optimistic when it comes to the careers of Evans and ASJ- both seem to get banged up easily and stay that way for a while… Until either one of them clocks a full season I wouldn’t be so quick to call either of them a offensive savior…I don’t think either will live up to their full potential because of health issues- but I hope I’m wrong…
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