With the opportunity to win the NFC South on Sunday night, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are also looking to avoid being swept in the regular season by the division rival New Orleans Saints for the third straight year. In order to accomplish these things, there are some players they are going to need on the field and - so far this week - they have been missing in action on the practice field.
Leonard Fournette, who is top two among running backs in the NFL in rushing yards, touchdowns, and receiving touchdowns has missed practice the last two days with an ankle injury. On top of that, Richard Sherman and Antoine Winfield Jr. have also missed both practices this week with achilles and foot injuries respectfully while Jamel Dean has still missed time with an undisclosed illness.
Some good news is that Jason Pierre-Paul has been a full participant and Jordan Whitehead (calf) has been limited the last two days. Whitehead’s status is unknown at this time for Sunday but it seems like he’d be a long shot to play.
For the Saints, they have had tackles Terron Armstead and Ryan Ramczyk out for both practices with knee injuries but got some good news that Lil’Jordan Humphrey was upgraded to limited with his hamstring injury.
The big story surrounding the Saints is, of course, the quarterback position. The last time these two teams met, the Saints lost Jameis Winston for the rest of the season to a torn ACL. Now Taysom Hill - who got the Saints off their five game slide last week - is dealing with a finger injury. He’s been a full participant in practice but it’s something to monitor for the New Orleans’ signal caller.
Here is the full injury report for the Buccaneers and Saints ahead of their prime time matchup;
The Buccaneers and Saints will kickoff at Raymond James Stadium at 8:20 p.m. on NBC. Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, and Michelle Tafoya will be on the call as the Bucs look to clinch their first division title since 2007.