With Tampa Bay star wide receiver Antonio Brown sidelined for a second-straight game on Sunday, the Buccaneers called up receiver Cyril Grayson from the practice squad.
Grayson will be the Bucs’ fifth receiver for Sunday’s game at New Orleans per Buccaneers.com’s Scott Smith. It’s the second-straight game Grayson received the nod.
Brown injured his ankle in Week 6 at Philadelphia and didn’t play against Chicago in Week 7. This past week, he appeared at practice with a crutch, and Bucs head coach Bruce Arians didn’t give a clear timetable for his return.
“Shoot, with that injury, who knows?” Arians told the media according to Pewter Report. “It could be (after the Week 9 bye), it could be a long time. It’s just wait and see how the foot [heals]. He’s still on a crutch. It’s still considered an ankle sprain, but it’s around his heel.”
Tampa Bay will have Tyler Johnson in the third receiver role behind Mike Evans and Chris Godwin at the Superdome. Rookie Jaelon Darden, who also returns kicks, will be in the fourth receiver spot.
Grayson played 13 offensive snaps against the Bears in Week 7 per Smith.
While Brown sits out again, a few other key Bucs may return for Sunday’s game: tight end Rob Gronkowski, linebacker Lavonte David, and cornerback Richard Sherman. All three were listed as questionable on the injury report. Also listed as questionable, linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul is expected to play, and cornerback Dee Delaney may play.
Grayson Deletes Tweet Before Saints Game
Grayson, who ran track at LSU and had a short stint with the New Orleans Saints, joked about his role for Sunday’s game on Twitter Saturday. He deleted the tweet the next morning though.
“Heading home to play the roll of a Villain,” Grayson wrote.
“There were people telling my friends, ‘Why aren’t you telling Cyril to quit wasting his time training for football?,'” Grayson said per Klemko. “But the Lord says, ‘I’m going to give you the desire of your heart.’ I don’t believe he would give me that dream without fulfilling it. I trusted the process.”
“If I wake up and I’m 60 years old and I didn’t go after the NFL, that would be the greatest regret for my whole life. Whatever your dream is, go after it,” Grayson added.
Grayson’s Journey to the Bucs
Grayson’s dream didn’t look ideal after landing in Seattle. The Seahawks put him on the practice squad and released him. He then bounced around teams’ practice squads over the next two years.
That included a brief stint in New Orleans from May to August in 2019 when the Saints cut him during training camp. He then found a home with the Bucs late in 2019 and played in two games.
Grayson appeared in three games last season, splitting time between the practice squad and active roster.