The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are already without wide receiver Chris Godwin - and after missing most of practice this week, Julio Jones was going to test out his injured knee in pregame before the team made a decision as to whether or not he would play. That decision is that he’ll miss Sunday’s matchup.
Mike Evans, Leonard Fournette, Russell Gage, and Tristan Wirfs were all questionable but will be suiting up for the Bucs on Sunday.
For the Saints, they will be without running back Alvin Kamara who is dealing with a rib injury. While the Bucs have kept Kamara in check in the running game, the threat of him as a pass catcher is a key for the Saints’ offense. New Orleans elevated Latavius Murray earlier this week in preparation of Kamara missing the game - but also because backup running back Mark Ingram was limited through the week with an ankle injury.
The other big name missing a pivotal division matchup is left tackle Donovan Smith, who is out with an elbow injury. Smith hyperextended his elbow against the Cowboys in week one and will be replaced by Josh Wells, who was serviceable but not impressive in his relief appearance last week.
For the Bucs, keeping Tom Brady upright against a Saints pass rush that has had his number over the last two seasons is crucial. The Bucs will likely look to rely on Fournette, Rachaad White, and the run game to control the tempo and keep their 45-year-old signal caller out of harm’s way.
While rookie cornerback Zyon McCollum returned to practice this week after dealing with a hamstring injury, he won’t be suiting up for his first NFL game quite yet. So, it’ll be on veteran corners Carlton Davis, Jamel Dean, and Sean Murphy-Bunting to keep a trio of Saints receivers in check against their former teammate Jameis Winston.
The Bucs elevated wide receiver Kenny Geiger Jr. and linebacker Kenny Young from the practice squad on Saturday.
Here are the full lists of inactive players for the Bucs and Saints ahead of their week two matchup in New Orleans;
Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
QB - Kyle Trask
WR - Chris Godwin
T - Donovan Smith
CB - Zyon McCollum
WR - Julio Jones
RB - Ke’Shawn Vaughn
TE - Kyle Rudolph
CB - Paulson Adebo
OL - Wyatt Davis
RB - Alvin Kamara
WR - Tre’Quan Smith
DE - Payton Turner
TE - Nick Vannett
The Bucs and Saints kickoff inside the Caesers Superdome in New Orleans at 1:00 p.m. ET on FOX. Kevin Burkhardt, Greg Olsen, Erin Andrews, and Tom Rhinaldi will be on the call. The Buccaneers are -2.5 point favorites on the road against the Saints.