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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Held out Wednesday, Bucs tackle Donovan Smith back practicing

Donovan Smith hasn't missed a snap in his first 18 NFL games, and his presence is a big part of the Bucs' offensive line.

JIM DAMASKE | Times

Donovan Smith hasn't missed a snap in his first 18 NFL games, and his presence is a big part of the Bucs' offensive line.

22

September

Here's a rare dose of good news this week on the Bucs injury front: Starting left tackle Donovan Smith, held out of practice Wednesday with a hip injury, is back practicing Thursday, a good sign he'll be able to play in Sunday's home opener against the Rams.

Smith hasn't missed a snap in his first 18 NFL games, and his presence is a big part of the Bucs' offensive line, which faces a tough Rams front four that includes Pro Bowl defensive tackle Aaron Donald and end Robert Quinn, who is three years removed from a 19-sack season.

While Smith was able to return to practice, four Bucs injured in Sunday's loss at Arizona -- RB Doug Martin (hamstring), DE Robert Ayers (ankle), TE Luke Stocker (ankle) and WR Cecil Shorts (hamstring) were again not at practice at all during the window open to the media, suggesting they'll be inactive on Sunday.

Rookie LB Devante Bond, who had been at full participation for Wednesday's practice, was not practicing Thursday, which likely means the hamstring injury  that has sidelined him for four weeks might again be a problem. The Bucs have only five linebackers on roster, so if Bond can't play Sunday, the Bucs may need to promote Cameron Lynch from the practice squad for depth.

[Last modified: Thursday, September 22, 2016 2:17pm]

    

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