Gerald McCoy hopes for quick return

TAMPA, Fla. – On the day after a 56-14 loss to Atlanta, there was at least one small bit of hope coming out of One Buccaneer Place.

All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said he hopes he’s able to return for next week’s game at Pittsburgh. McCoy missed the Atlanta game with a broken hand. McCoy said he wanted to play, but it was in his best long-term interest not to.

“Of course I wanted to [play], but it’s a long season, and I’d rather my team have me in the long run than just for one game,’’ McCoy said. “There was a chance that if I played last night, I could’ve completely messed my hand up, and then needed surgery, which would put me out for good. I had to play it smart, but I’m working to get back.”

McCoy also took exception to talk from fans that Tampa Bay Hall of Fame defensive tackle Warren Sapp kept right on playing through a broken hand.

“Let me clarify something, because I’ve seen some people trying to give me a hard time for missing the game,’’ McCoy said. “Everybody says Sapp played through it. But let’s get our facts straight. Sapp sat out a game, too. He missed a game in Minnesota , and then came back against Green Bay away, and had a pretty good game. So let’s get our facts straight, OK? Thank you.”