Bucs confirm Gerald McCoy is lost for the season
For the second straight year, Gerald McCoy's season ended with a torn bicep, this time in his right arm.
McCoy was injured with 3:35 remaining in the first quarter of Sunday's 27-16 loss to New Orleans. McCoy reached to make a tackle of Saints running back Chris Ivory, who rushed for 3-yards on the play. McCoy immediately grabbed his right arm, then raised his left hand to signal he needed to come out of the game.
The No. 3 overall pick from Oklahoma in 2010 missed the final three games of his rookie year after tearing his left bicep in at Washington. McCoy was returning to the lineup Sunday in New Orleans after being sidelined for two games with an ankle injury.
"It's football,'' Bucs coach Raheem Morris said of McCoy, who has four sacks in 19 career games. "(Quarterback) Matt Stafford missed two seasons with the Detroit Lions and he's probably putting up his best season right now. He's got to come back, he's got to go rehab, he's got to get his mind right, come back ready to play and get ready to play a 16 game season.''
Morris said he isn't sure why McCoy sustained a torn bicep two years in a row, but said Sunday's injury might have been the result of poor technique.
"I can talk about the one yesterday,'' Morris said. "It was an opportunity. He got off the ball, he had a chance to make a play on the back and he kind of reached out rather than putting his face involved in there. You've got to move into the ball, sky your eyes and hit on contact. He reached at the guy, which is a common mistake when you're coming off a block. That's the one I can talk about yesterday. I don't remember the one last year how he did it.
"That’s football. That’s the unfortunate part of our game. You can't worry about that stuff. You know me, I'm all gray matter. I'm next man up, find a way to get the next victory and ready to deal.''
McCoy's absence had an impact on the Bucs ability to stop the Saints, who utilized running backs Chris Ivory, Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles effectively to combine for 175 yards rushing.
With McCoy out, the Bucs were unable to get much rest for defensive tackles Roy Miller and Brian Price. Frank Okam was inactive with a calf injury he suffered in practice last week.
"On defense, losing Gerald yesterday hurt...you can see the difference in our play up front when he's out of the game, and how it affects our get off and some of the things we're able to do positively on defense. But they still held up good enough to win the football game.
"You lose the get off, the explosiveness. You're talking about a top three pick. You're talking about a guy who gets off the ball and causes disruption. When he's played, he's been playing pretty well for us. He's done a great job versus the run, he's done a great job as far as explosion and get off. He makes game plans change.''
Okam said he's hopeful he will be well enough to play Sunday against the Houston Texans. But Morris indicated the Bucs will add another defensive tackle to the active roster. The Bucs don't have a defensive tackle on their practice squad.
"We have to add somebody to the roster,'' Morris said. "How fast we can implement him and put him into our Rosetta Stone of coaching and get him going. It's obviously going to be my challenge. We'll handle that. I've got some good defensive line coaches who will help out there. We had d-tackle by committee yesterday, which is rough, especially when you ask some guys to go down there are that aren't fulltime guys, like a George Johnson, Michael Bennett. We did Da'Quan Bowers the first time we played them.''