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Kellen Winslow, Geno Hayes, Sammie Stroughter questionable for Tampa Bay Buccaneers

TAMPA — TE Kellen Winslow, LB Geno Hayes and WR Sammie Stroughter were listed as questionable on the Bucs' final injury report Friday.

Winslow (knee) looked like a good bet to play when he partici­pated fully in Thursday's practice. But he was unable to practice Friday, and it wasn't immediately clear if that represented a setback. However, players' participation levels in Friday practices are often a good indicator of their ability to play on Sunday.

As for Stroughter, who missed Sunday's game with a back injury, he looked more likely to play.

"He looked much better than last week," coach Raheem Morris said. "It's one of those things where it's a soreness issue. You've got to be able to get through it and be able to run. Last week, he went out (before) the game and wasn't able to do it. He actually made it through all the practices this week."

Stroughter's absence would be an issue not only because of his contributions on third down, but his return ability. He has become the primary return man in the absence of Clifton Smith, who is out for the season after sustaining two concussions.

Hayes (hamstring) practiced fully this week. He said Friday that he was practically certain he would play, but it will still be a coaches' decision. Sunday, Morris and his staff sat Hayes after determining he wasn't fit to play. That's why the former FSU standout's optimism isn't going to sway Morris. "Geno told us (he felt good) last week," Morris said.

WR Michael Clayton (knee) and TE John Gilmore (head) are out. Morris said he doesn't envision Clayton, who has missed two games, going on season-ending injured reserve.

"I think he'll be back next week," Morris said.

NO SYMPATHY: The team departed for Seattle on Friday afternoon — a day earlier than most road trips — hoping to mitigate some of the jet lag associated with cross-country plane trips. But Seahawks coach Jim Mora is convinced his team has it worse.

"Having been on the West Coast for half of my career, it's a lot harder going west to east than east to west," Mora said.

"It's hard to get yourself going early in the morning when you're not used to doing it. So when we have these 10 a.m. kickoffs (Pacific time), it's a little bit difficult. Doctors will tell you and studies will show that if your normal practice time is 1 o'clock and you play at 3, you're more likely to be ready to play than if your normal practice time is at 1 o'clock and you play at 10 (a.m.). Not that I'm a doctor."

Kellen Winslow, Geno Hayes, Sammie Stroughter questionable for Tampa Bay Buccaneers 12/18/09 [Last modified: Saturday, December 19, 2009 1:36pm]

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