Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians shared Wednesday night that one of his starters endured a potentially career-ending injury in Monday’s loss to the Los Angeles Rams.
Bucs center A.Q. Shipley left the game late in the fourth quarter due to what Arians called a “stinger” after the game, per NBC Sports’ Mike Florio, who said the news of the injury’s seriousness broke during Arians’ Sirius XM Radio interview.
Tampa Bay Times reporter Rick Stroud tweeted out Arians’ assessment of Shipley.
A.Q. Shipley Stepped up as Starter in Recent Weeks
Tampa Bay listed Shipley’s status as out with a neck injury on Wednesday’s initial Week 12 injury report. The eighth-year veteran is now a likely candidate to be placed on season-ending injured reserve before the Bucs determine any next steps this offseason.
The 34-year-old started the past two games at center as the offensive line shifted around due to guard Ali Marpet being sidelined by concussion symptoms. Ryan Jensen, who normally started at center, shifted over to Marpet’s position, opening the opportunity for Shipley to start.
Shipley’s contributions helped quarterback Tom Brady and the offense get back on track against the Carolina Panthers in Week 10. The Bucs put up 46 points in a dominant win as Brady threw for 349 yards and running back Ronald Jones II rushed for 192 yards.
Shipley played most of the snaps in the loss to the Rams Monday as well. He left the field two plays before Brady’s fourth-quarter interception, according to Sports Illustrated’s All Bucs.
Shipley Reunited With Arians This Offseason
Shipley reunited with Arians in the offseason on a one-year contract, coming to the Bucs from the Arizona Cardinals.
Arians coached the former seventh-round pick for three seasons before stepping down after the 2017 campaign. After a season away, he took over the coaching reigns in Tampa Bay in 2019 and has guided the franchise to a 14-13 record through his first 27 games as head coach.
Shipley’s 2020 season ends after five games and 170 total snaps, including 13 on special teams. If his decade-long career is indeed over, the NFL veteran will hang up his cleats with 72 starts in 110 games across six teams, including the Pittsburgh Steelers (who originally drafted him in 2009), Philadelphia Eagles, Indianapolis Colts, Baltimore Ravens, Cardinals and Buccaneers.