Bucs preparing for healthy Cam Newton

TAMPA, Fla. -- Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton's rib injury has been a big story in the Carolinas.

In Tampa Bay's locker room, Newton's health isn't a big issue. The Bucs are preparing to face the Panthers on Sunday and they're expecting a healthy Newton.

"Cam Newton is Cam Newton," Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said. "He's a two-time Pro Bowler, Rookie of the Year and all that jazz. We're still facing the division champs. Until somebody takes that from them, that's who they are. That team runs as he runs. We're preparing for Cam Newton. We don't care about the rib or the back or whatever it is. We're just preparing for him as if he's 100 percent."

Newton is expected to play with padding covering the rib and the Bucs aren't planning to go easy on him.

"Any shot I can get on him, I'm going to take," McCoy said. "But that's any quarterback, any running back. You get a hit on them and after a while they're going to get tired of getting hit."