TAMPA, Fla. – There was a bit of troubling news out of Tampa Bay’s locker room after the Buccaneers defeated the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.
GrimmSafety Cody Grimm injured his knee in the second half and was carted off the field.
“Obviously, it didn’t look good,’’ coach Raheem Morris said. “But it’s the next-man-up theory. Here we go.’’
Morris said he hadn’t had a chance to talk to team doctors about the full extent of Grimm’s injury, but the coach didn’t sound all that optimistic. A second-year pro, Grimm moved into a starting role as a rookie.
After he left the game, Corey Lynch took his place. Lynch is primarily a special-teams player and the Bucs also could turn to Larry Asante, who was inactive Sunday, if Graham is out for any extended period. Rookie Devin Holland also is on the roster.
But there’s also a wild-card possibility. Tanard Jackson was suspended last September for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. The league said the length of Jackson’s suspension was one year. That time period has passed, but the league has yet to say anything about Jackson being reinstated.
That’s a decision that will be up to commissioner Roger Goodell and it will depend largely on if Jackson has met all the requirements the league placed upon him during the suspension.
If Grimm is out for a long time, getting Jackson back could be a huge boost for the Bucs. Before the suspension, he was their best safety. But the Bucs have said all along that Jackson’s possible return is out of their control. They’ve said repeatedly that they have to plan to go on without him and, if Jackson does return, it’s a bonus.