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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Koetter: Cecil Shorts will start at WR vs. 49ers

Cecil Shorts, 28, who previously played for the Texans before signing with the Buccaneers.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cecil Shorts, 28, who previously played for the Texans before signing with the Buccaneers.



The Bucs will start veteran Cecil Shorts at receiver on Sunday against the 49ers in place of the injured Vincent Jackson, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter said on Sirius XM NFL radio Saturday morning.

Shorts, 28, has missed the past four weeks with a hamstring injury suffered on his first and only catch of the season in Week 2 at Arizona. He's practiced all week and should be healthy for Sunday's game, allowing the Bucs to keep receiver Adam Humphries in the slot, where he's played alongside starter Mike Evans.

The Bucs signed Shorts after he was released by the Texans in preseason -- he had 42 catches for 484 yards last season, and averaged 58 catches for 771 yards in the three previous seasons while with the Jaguars. He overlapped with Koetter in Jacksonville during his rookie year in 2011.

The Bucs lost Jackson to an ACL injury that will sideline him at least eight weeks and likely the rest of the season. The Bucs would have Evans, Humphries, Shorts and Russell Shepard as their top four receivers Sunday, with Louis Murphy unlikely to play as he's still in his first week of practice as he returns from ACL surgery in November.

Donteea Dye was signed to the 53-man roster this week, but Koetter said Friday that he was "not ready" physically after returning to practicing this week after a hamstring injury. Freddie Martino, who is on the Bucs' practice squad, traveled with the team to California and could be promoted to the active roster for Sunday as a fifth receiver.

[Last modified: Saturday, October 22, 2016 2:22pm]


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