Bucs welcome back RB Charles Sims

TAMPA, Fla. -- The Buccaneers have activated running back Charles Sims from injured reserve, meaning he is eligible to face the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

Sims, the team's third-down running back, had been on IR since Oct. 10, after injuring his knee against the Denver Broncos. He returned to practice prior to Tampa Bay's Week 11 game, with his 21-day practice period concluding this week.

Before the injury, Sims had seen action in four games (starting two), rushing 41 times for 116 yards and a touchdown. A viable contributor in the short-passing game, Sims also caught 14 passes for 112 yards and a TD.

Last year, he had 1,090 combined rushing and receiving yards and four touchdowns.

The Bucs have struggled to run the ball. They've averaged 98.8 yards rushing, 17th in the league, since Pro Bowl tailback Doug Martin returned four games ago. They're averaging 104.9 yards rushing for the season -- also 17th in the league and significantly lower than their 135.1 average in 2015, when they were fifth in the league.

The Bucs could use Sims' hands Sunday after losing two wide receivers against the San Diego Chargers last weekend. Cecil Shorts III suffered a season-ending knee injury and underwent surgery Friday, and slot receiver Adam Humphries remains in the league's concussion protocol and will not play Sunday.

Receivers Josh Huff and Donteea Dye were called up from the practice squad this week.

To make room for Sims and Dye, the Bucs waived offensive lineman Josh Allen and defensive tackle John Hughes III.