Tampa Bay is stacked at tight end, though their depth took a hit this week.
The Buccaneers have placed TE Anthony Auclair on injured reserve, the team announces. Auclair sustained a calf injury in the team’s opener vs. the Saints and he’ll be on the “minor IR,” which means he could return after a minimum of three games.
Auclair is the fourth-string tight end behind Rob Gronkowski, O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate. He saw 11 snaps against New Orleans, playing them all on special teams.
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Who Will Replace Auclair on the Active Roster?
The move to put Auclair on IR gives the team an open roster spot. Tight end Tanner Hudson, who is on the practice squad, could be the guy though Bruce Arians hasn’t yet committed to a decision.
“That’s one of the decisions we’ll have to make in the next 48 hours,” said Arians. “Who we might bring up – it will be for special teams and Hud does do some stuff on special teams, too. It could be him or it could be a couple other guys.”
Latest on Wide Receiver Injuries
Chris Godwin participated in practice on Friday, though he will need to undergo testing on Saturday and team doctors will need to clear him to play. It’s possible that he is upgraded to questionable, though he still faces hurdles to suit up in Week 2.
Godwin took a big hit from Saints safety D.J. Swearinger against the Saints on Sunday. The play resulted in a penalty but Godwin showed no signs of a concussion then or in the days after the contest.
The wideout is listed as doubtful on the team’s injury report.
Scotty Miller is expected to see an expanded role in Week 2, though Justin Watson will likely line up in the slot for Tampa Bay with Godwin out. Watson could be a nice, cheap DFS that most aren’t focused on.
In other news, Mike Evans, who was hindered by a hamstring injury leading up to Week 1, ultimately suited up last week and he’s set to play again in Week 2. He found little success in the opener, though much of that was a result of cornerback Marshon Lattimore blanketing him.
The former No. 7 overall pick has gained 1,000 in each of his first six seasons, something only Randy Moss has done, as Football Outsiders highlights in their 2020 version of the almanac. Expect him to get seven-straight, which would be the record, with Brady at the helm.
Stat Shows Reason for Buccaneers Optimism
One loss doesn’t define a season and there’s optimism that things will turn around for Bucs. Brady has lost Week 1 as a starter on three other occasions in his career; each time, he went on to play in the Super Bowl that season.
Brady’s three Week 1 losses as a starter came in 2003 (Bills), 2014 (Dolphins), and 2017 (Chiefs). Brady’s Patriots went 2-for-3 in Super Bowls, losing at the end of the 2017 season to the Eagles in the big game.
After the Saints game, Bruce Arians was asked if he still believed that the Bucs could win the division, the coach responded with “Hell Yeah.”