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Alstott has disc surgery

Fullback Mike Alstott had successful surgery Monday to repair a herniated disc in his neck.

The surgery was performed in Pittsburgh by neurosurgeon Joe Maroon, and Alstott is expected to return to Tampa in a few days, a team spokesman said.

The six-time Pro Bowl selection was placed on injured reserve Oct. 7, one day after experiencing tingling in his arms as a result of contact against Indianapolis.

Alstott had known for several weeks that the disc between his sixth and seventh vertebrae was herniated. He flew to Pittsburgh the morning of the Monday night game to see a neurologist and was assured he was at no greater risk of paralysis than anyone else on the field.

The injury could have occurred any time during his eight seasons.

Alstott plans to return to the Bucs next season.

WEBB WORKS OUT: Seven-time Pro Bowl tackle Richmond Webb, who has not played since early in 2002, worked out Tuesday at One Buc Place.

The Bucs are thin at the position because of injuries to Roman Oben (broken right hand) and Cornell Green (left ankle sprain).

Oben did not play in Sunday's 17-14 loss to the Saints and coach Jon Gruden indicated he will not until the cast is removed. Right tackle Kenyatta Walker replaced Oben on the left side and Green started on the right. Green is questionable for Sunday's game against the Panthers.

The only other player with NFL experience at tackle is Kerry Jenkins, who started the past two games at left guard.

Webb, 6 feet 6, 325 pounds, played 11 seasons with the Dolphins, protecting the blind side of Dan Marino. He started 16 games for the Bengals in 2001 and four in 2002, but was put on injured reserve after tearing a chest muscle against the Bucs.

_ JOANNE KORTH

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