Bucs Make Final Call on Rob Gronkowski & Antonio Brown’s Week 7 Status

Rob Gronkowski Buccaneers

Getty The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be without Rob Gronkowski and Antonio Brown.

It looks like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to be even more banged up heading into Week 7.

As the Buccaneers engaged in their final practice session of the week on Friday, they did so without two of their key players as tight end Rob Gronkowski and wide receiver Antonio Brown were absent.

According to head coach Bruce Arians, both offensive players will miss Sunday’s tilt against the Chicago Bears.

Gronkowski has been nursing multiple rib injuries since Week 3 against the Los Angeles Rams. Although he’s been out the past four weeks, the Buccaneers made the decision to not place the veteran tight end on injured reserve.

In the case of Brown, the Buccaneers’ slot receiver had played in the previous game against the Philadelphia Eagles. However, he has been a nursing an ankle injury all week and hadn’t participated in any of the three practice sessions this week.

In addition to Gronkowski and Brown’s absence, the Buccaneers will also be without linebacker Lavonte David (ankle) and cornerback Richard Sherman (hamstring).

David has not played since suffering the ankle injury in Week 5 against the Miami Dolphins.

In the case of Sherman, the 33-year-old cornerback is expected to be out for at least a couple of weeks after suffering his hamstring injury early on in the Week 6 game against the Eagles.

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Buccaneers’ Injury Situation in a Nutshell

Now that we have the bad news out of the way, time to get to the good news.

While four Buccaneers starters have officially been ruled out against the Bears, two starters may be back in the lineup.

Starting free safety Antoine Winfield Jr. officially cleared concussion protocol and might play Sunday, according to Arians. The 23-year-old had participated in every practice session this week after missing the past two games due to being in the concussion protocol.

Arians also says linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul may be back despite dealing with shoulder and hand injuries. The 32-year-old did not practice a single time all week.

As far as tight end O.J. Howard is concerned, the Buccaneers’ tight end will enter the game with a “questionable” designation. However, according to Greg Auman of The Athletic, Arians did not even mention Howard’s name during Friday’s media availability on October 22. That possibly bodes well for his playing status entering Sunday.

Howard has dealt with an ankle injury all week. He did not participate in Wednesday’s session before engaging in limited participation in Thursday and Friday’s practices.

Tom Brady Will Finally Face Ohio State Quarterback

Although Tom Brady has played in the NFL for 22 years, there’s one thing he has not done — face an Ohio State quarterback.

Despite Ohio State’s storied history and history of high-profile draft picks, Brady — a Michigan Wolverine alum — has never faced a quarterback from his alma mater’s rival school.

He’ll do so for the first time at the age of 44 against the 22-year-old Justin Fields.

“How about that? I’m not going to say anything too inflammatory about Ohio State,” Brady said on Friday, October 22. “I’ll have my time. This is Michigan State week, so those are the guys I can kind of go after.”

“That’s interesting. Why is there not a lot of Ohio State quarterbacks in the pros?,” Brady asked. “There were a lot of Michigan guys over the years, but not a lot of Ohio State guys. I’ll be sure to say hi to him after the game.”


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