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Bucs linebacker Kendell Beckwith won’t play in 2018

 
Kendell Beckwith (51) tackles Minnesota Vikings running back Jerick McKinnon (21) during a 2017 game at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. [Times files]
Kendell Beckwith (51) tackles Minnesota Vikings running back Jerick McKinnon (21) during a 2017 game at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. [Times files]
Published Nov. 19, 2018

TAMPA — The Bucs will not place linebacker Kendell Beckwith on the team's 53-man roster in time for Wednesday afternoon's deadline to activate him, meaning Beckwith won't play this season.

Beckwith suffered a broken ankle in a car accident riding as a passenger back in April, an injury that required surgery. He opened the season on the non-football injury active list.

The Bucs started the clock on a 21-day practice window on Oct. 31, giving the team three weeks to either place Beckwith on the active roster or place him on the NFI inactive list, which would end his season.

In recent days, head coach Dirk Koetter said that Beckwith was making significant progress toward being active, but ultimately, he could not get ready in time.

"Kendell made progress, and he worked his tail off to get back," Koetter said. "I don't think people can appreciate how serious a surgery that he had, and it was an uphill battle. He worked hard to get back, but he's just not going to get back to a point where he feels comfortable playing at the level that he knows he can play at."

The Bucs were counting a return from Beckwith — who made 73 tackles, including seven for loss, as a rookie last season — to help an injury-riddled linebacker corps.

The Bucs are already without starting middle linebacker Kwon Alexander for the season with a torn ACL. Outside linebacker Lavonte David missed Sunday's game with an MCL sprain. Reserve Jack Cichy is also out for the season with an ACL tear.

Contact Eduardo A. Encina at eencina@tampabay.com. Follow @EddieInTheYard.