The Bucs are optimistic that they’ll have some injured players back this week in the Super Bowl LV rematch
Todd Bowles was optimistic following the loss to the Green Bay Packers that Julio Jones would return this week, even saying he could have played in week three but they kept him out as a precaution. The other key players many are hoping to see return this week are Chris Godwin and Donovan Smith, both joining Jones as having not played since week one against the Cowboys.
At practice in Miami on Wednesday the Bucs had Jones, Godwin, and Smith all listed as limited participants – a positive sign heading into the weekend.
Other Bucs listed as limited were Russell Gage (hamstring) and Logan Hall (groin). Tom Brady (finger) was a full participant and both Breshad Perriman (knee/hamstring) and Akiem Hicks (foot) did not participate.
For the Chiefs, they were without wide receiver Mecole Hardman (heel), defensive end Mike Danna (calf), running back Ronald Jones (illness), and defensive tackle Chris Jones (rest). Limited were kicker Harrison Butker (ankle) and wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling (abdomin).
While the location of the game is still in the air due to Hurricane Ian, the NFL is still – as of now – planning on keeping the game in Raymond James Stadium. A backup plan if needed would be U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis with the Minnesota Vikings overseas in London facing the Saints.
Regardless of where the game is played, the Bucs are getting closer to being back to full strength, especially at the receiver position. Even if Jones plays, however, the other question is just how effective can he be with a partially torn PCL. The return of Mike Evans will help matters, but once the Bucs get their top trio back out on the field we should begin to see the offense get back on track and put up more than one touchdown per game.