TAMPA — Some Bucs appear to be healing in time for Sunday’s NFC South showdown at Atlanta.
The shortage of linebackers they endured against Carolina could be solved by the return of Lavonte David (groin) and rookie SirVocea Dennis (illness), who were back at practice Wednesday.
“Lavonte and SirVocea are back,” Bucs coach Todd Bowles said. “Everybody else was kind of limited.”
Linebacker Devin White (foot) and cornerback Jamel Dean (ankle/foot) were at practice but did not participate. Linebacker K.J. Britt, who left Sunday’s win over Carolina in the first quarter with a back injury, was a limited participant.
With David and White out against the Panthers, the Bucs became very thin at inside linebacker when Britt left the game. That forced them to use safety Ryan Neal at linebacker.
Neal responded with four tackles, including a huge tackle for loss on third and 1 at the Tampa Bay 2-yard line that forced a field goal.
Also not practicing Wednesday: defensive back Josh Hayes (illness), linebacker J.J. Russell (personal), nose tackle Vita Vea (foot).
The Bucs have won two of their last three games and at 5-7 are one game behind the first-place Falcons (6-6) for the NFC South lead.
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