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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Cody Grimm likely out for season



Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Cody Grimm is thought to be out for the remainder of the season with a knee ligament injury.

Grimm injured his right knee during the third quarter of Sunday’s 16-13 win over the Falcons. He collided with another player, possibly teammate Geno Hayes, after flying up from his safety spot to help stuff Atlanta back Michael Turner following a 1-yard gain.

Head coach Raheem Morris was noncommittal when asked about the extent of Grimm’s injury at Monday’s news conference.

“We don’t know the extent of that yet,’’ Morris said. “He’s definitely getting an MRI. I know his MCL is messed up and he’s got some other stuff we’re checking on right now. So we’re not sure of that yet. I’ll have to get back to you.’’

One thing Morris was certain about is that the Bucs will miss Grimm, for however long he is sidelined.

“'I don’t know what’s more important about Cody,’’ he said. “If you’re talking about Cody, you’re talking about his practice habits, his effort, his willingness to do just about anything to put his face on people. He’s a nasty, vicious, hard player who plays smart, plays fast, plays hard and plays consistent.

“He can execute just about any game plan. He does a great job of disguising. His communication with Sean J(ones) has really grown unbelievably. His ability to flop out with Ronde (Barber) on some of those blitzes and some of those coverage deals that they do. ... All those things are important.’’

The last two weeks, Grimm was the extra attacker in the box as the Bucs tried to slow running backs Adrian Peterson and Michael Turner.

“The Wolf was there all day yesterday,’’ Morris said. “The first two weeks, we didn’t have him there too much. We had some different side rotations. Sean J(ones) was in the box a little bit. We went to it a little bit in the second half against Minnesota. That was our big halftime adjustment, put the Wolf in the box. We put the seventh-rounder against Adrian Peterson. Yesterday he was the lead dog coming down into the box until he got hurt.’’

Corey Lynch, who replaced Grimm on Sunday, and Larry Asante will battle this week in practice, Morris said.

“We’ve got Corey Lynch, we feel great about the way he finished the game yesterday,’’ Morris said. “But we also have Larry Asante, who’s been standing over there with a baseball cap (inactive) for awhile. We’ll let those two guys, Larry and Corey, battle this week to see who will play and who will get the most amount of time. You know me, I can play either one of them or both of them any kind of way.’’

Hayes suffered a possible concussion on the play. He left the game and did not return but said afterward he’d be fine.

“He’s going through the battery of tests as mandated by the NFL for concussions,’’ Morris said. “He bumped his head yesterday, so we’ll see where he is.’’

Grimm missed the final month of the 2010 season after breaking his left leg against the Baltimore Ravens.

-- RICK STROUD, Times Staff Writer

[Last modified: Monday, September 26, 2011 1:02pm]


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