Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Michael Bennett likely to sit out Sunday

TAMPA — Michael Bennett could handle the doubters and double-teams. But Wednesday, the Bucs defensive end finally found his groin injury to be too burdensome to play through.

"It just got to the point where I just couldn't go," said Bennett, an undrafted free agent from Texas A&M claimed off waivers from Seattle in 2009.

"I had to go sit down. I could barely get down in my stance. I couldn't move my legs right. They've told me I probably need to sit out a couple of weeks. That's the only way you get healthy with this thing: rest."

Coach Raheem Morris held out hope Bennett could play.

"He'll be day to day. We'll have to see what's going on by the end of the week," Morris said.

Bennett, 26, has 31 tackles, two sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.

His play has been good enough to keep rookie Da'Quan Bowers, a second-round draft pick, out of the starting lineup. But coaches have been raving about Bowers' play recently, and it's likely he will replace Bennett on Sunday at Tennessee.

Bowers said he might not have been ready for the responsibility earlier but now feels prepared. "Mental sharpness" was what he cited as his biggest area of improvement this season.

"It's not much physical, but being mentally prepared each week," he said. "That's half the battle, just knowing the ins and outs."

Morris said Bowers has improved as the season has progressed.

"The last game may have been one of his more productive games," he said. "The game before that, you kind of saw some flash from him. He's settled in at that left end spot. He's comfortable. He's playing aggressive. He's violent and starting to pick things up pretty quickly."

More injuries: S Tanard Jackson, who missed Sunday's game at Green Bay and has been plagued by a hamstring strain since Oct. 23 against the Bears, returned to practice and is expected to start against the Titans.

Jackson, who missed 56 weeks serving a league suspension for violating its substance-abuse policy, was injured returning an interception against the Bears. He played poorly in a loss to the Texans on Nov. 13 and was inactive Sunday against the Packers.

"Tanard went out there and did mostly everything," Morris said. "He participated in everything. I watched him go out and run around, and I'm feeling really good about that one."

LB Dekoda Watson has been battling a groin injury but participated in practice. And DT Brian Price was limited with a forearm injury.

HASSELBECK WILL PLAY: Titans QB Matt Hasselbeck confirmed he will play Sunday against the Bucs.

Hasselbeck left Sunday's 23-17 loss to the Falcons with a sprained right elbow. Rookie Jake Locker took over and nearly led a comeback win in throwing for 140 yards.

"He's awesome," Hasselbeck said of Locker, the eighth overall draft pick out of Washington. "He and I are good friends, and our whole quarterback room has been great this year.

"Jake has a ton of ability. He came in and played the fourth quarter this past week and played really, really well. It's no secret why he was a first-rounder.

"For him, I'm sure it's fun being in the NFL. But at the same time, I'm sure he's getting antsy and itching for his chance to play. And I'm sure he'll get his chance at some point and have a long, successful career."

ROSTER MOVE: DT Frank Okam, released from the active roster Tuesday, was added to the practice squad Wednesday. The Bucs released DT Swanson Miller from the practice squad to make room.

Times staff writer Stephen F. Holder contributed to this report.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Michael Bennett likely to sit out Sunday 11/23/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 23, 2011 8:38pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays morning after: At least Archer looked good

    Blogs

     

  2. Seizures drove Jerry Kill out of coaching. He's back, and so are they

    College

    PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Jerry Kill knew he was headed down a familiar path. Kill, the Rutgers offensive coordinator, acknowledged as much on a lunchtime walk around the Scarlet Knights' football stadium two weeks ago.

    Rutgers offensive coordinator Jerry Kill watches drills as he continues to stay in football while experiencing seizures. [Associated Press]
  3. Joe Maddon gets warm reception in return to the Trop

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The night was arranged to honor former Rays manager Joe Maddon in his first visit back to the Trop, and the standing ovation from the bipartisan crowd and scoreboard video tribute seemed proper acknowledgments of his hefty role in the Rays' success during his nine-year stint.

    Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon (70) talks with reporters during a press conference before the start of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.
  4. Rays vs. Cubs, 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Cubs

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM; 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays' Blake Snell poses for a picture during the team's photo day at baseball spring training in Port Charlotte, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Cubs game

    The Heater

    Chris Archer's night ended with his 11th loss, but he and the Rays should feel good about his six solid innings. After the forearm tightness scare in Chicago, he had two rough outings (15 hits, 11 runs, seven innings), so Tuesday was a reassuring rebound.