The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were already incredibly thin at cornerback, and on Sunday night they got even thinner. Carlton Davis left the team’s Week 4 game against the New England Patriots after suffering a quad injury.
Davis was working on the punt return team when he pulled up lame while running down the field and appeared to be in tremendous pain. He eventually had to be helped off the field and then was carted into the locker room. He was later declared out for the game.
Following the game Bucs head coach Bruce Arians gave an update on the cornerback’s recovery time saying: “It’ll be a while, looks like.”
The Buccaneers could scarcely afford another injury to their defensive back corps. Slot cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting has been out since suffering a dislocated elbow against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 1, while Jamel Dean suffered a knee injury against the Los Angeles Rams last week.
Tampa is so thin at the position that it brought in former Seahawks and 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman midweek and inserted him as a starter on Sunday night. Ross Cockrell, Dee Delaney, and Pierre Desir each figure to see more work in the event Davis has to miss time, which seems likely.
The Buccaneers have routinely faced considerably more pass attempts than rushing attempts due to the strength of their run defense, and the injuries to their cornerbacks are likely to exaggerate the split even more. It would not be a surprise if they pursued more veteran help at the cornerback slot, whether in free agency or via trade.
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