The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are being hit very hard with injuries today. The team just ruled out guard J.R. Sweezy and tight end O.J. Howard for the game, both with ankle injuries.
The Bucs are playing Joe Hawley in Sweezy’s place, while fullback Alan Cross and tight end Antony Auclair are getting extended playing time with O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate (knee injury, but returned to the game at the end of the half) injured. Those are some hefty blows to an already struggling offense.
Those injuries come in addition to Ryan Smith’s (concussion), and with defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (biceps), linebacker Lavonte David (hamstring) and cornerback Vernon Hargreaves (hamstring) ruled out prior to the game. Again: this team has been extremely hard-hit by injuries.
Oh, and to make matters worse, safety Justin Evans suffered an ankle injury at the end of the first half.
It’s tough to win that way, which is reflected in the score. The Falcons lead 17-7 at half time, with the defense really struggling to contain Matt Ryan and company. Hopefully they can put up more of a fight in the second half.