If Nicks out, Bucs could turn to Carimi at guard
TAMPA -- If starting left guard Carl Nicks, battling a recurrence of a MRSA staph infection in his injured left foot, can't play in Sunday's game against the Eagles, the team may turn to Gabe Carimi, who is back to relative health after losing 20 pounds in a bout with mononucleosis.
Carimi, who started the Bucs' first two games while Nicks was sidelined by his first MRSA infection, said Friday that he's gained back about 10 of the pounds he lost and started to feel in playing shape in practice earlier this week. Coach Greg Schiano said he isn't expecting a full game from Carimi, but likes the progress he's made during the team's bye week.
"I don't think he can go in there and play 70 plays right now, but I thought he practiced well this week," Schiano said. "When an o-lineman doesn't catch your eye, that's fine, but he did catch my eye, doing some good things. He's going to be able to play for sure."
The Bucs also worked backup center Ted Larsen at left guard in practice Friday, though Schiano stressed that was more with an eye toward having as much flexibility at the position as possible Sunday.
Another player not seen at practice for the third day in a row during the opening 30-minute window open to reporters was receiver Mike Williams, who is listed as having "limited participation" due to a hamstring injury. Williams, designated as "questionable" for Sunday's game, had played through the injury two weeks ago against Arizona, but was limited to 38 yards on four catches.
The team has added Tiquan Underwood and Chris Owusu to the active roster since that game, also cutting receiver Kevin Ogletree, so the Bucs' passing options continue to be in flux for rookie quarterback Mike Glennon.
The rest of the team's players who had been limited by injuries earlier in the week all were listed as practicing fully Friday and "probable" for Sunday, including safeties Mark Barron (hamstring) and Dashon Goldson (foot), as well as tight end Tom Crabtree, who is expected to make his Bucs debut after missing four games with a high ankle sprain.