Tampa Bay has had a busy week and a half. They won over Minnesota, lost Nicks for the year, and traded Aqib Talib to New England. Now they are awaiting an appeal decision on Eric Wright who is facing a 4 game suspension. In the meantime, he is listed as probable for this weeks game against the Raiders with an Achilles injury. It is a little puzzling that Wright wouldn’t just take his suspension and get back to full health. He must believe he has a chance to get it reduced, or maybe he will do anything to avoid missing 4 game checks. Either way, Wright looks likely to play, even if he isn’t at 100%. The Buc’s secondary needs all the help they can get and then some, so that is welcome news.
In other, less impacting news, Tampa will have three new players in uniform this Sunday. DL Aaron Morgan and G Roger Allen were promoted from the practice squad, and CB Danny Gorrer was claimed on waivers from Seattle. None of the players are likely to see much playing time outside of special teams. I am a big fan of Gorrer though. He stepped into a playoff bound secondary when with Baltimore and held his own for a few games. He is a physical corner that lacks game breaking speed, but wasn’t really getting burned in his few NFL appearances. I think if he could get some prolonged playing time he may turn a few heads. If he can’t crack the lineup here in Tampa then I likely am overrating him.
Finally, Doug Martin was named Offensive Rookie of the Month. He incredibly led the league in yards per scrimmage per game in the month. He has finally started to show why he was made a first round draft pick after a slow start. Alfred Morris was the early standout as a rookie runner, but Martin is starting to surpass him with his more well rounded game.
A quick look at the Raiders injury situation, LB Rolando McClain will be a game time decision for the game with a toe injury. Missing their middle linebacker would be a boon for Martin’s value, but with Nicks out it would be even at best. Both McFadden and Goodson are likely to play, but are battling through various injuries. That could mean they lean more on the passing game, which probably isn’t great news for Tampa.