For the second week in a row the Tampa Bay Buccaneers waited until game day to make a final decision on the availability of top cornerback Carlton Davis, who is dealing with a groin injury. And for the second week in a row the final verdict wasn't a good one for the Buccaneers. Davis, who was considered doubtful to play on Friday's injury report, has been ruled out and will miss a second straight contest to finish the regular season.
That means the Buccaneers will be without three starters on their sixth-ranked defense, as outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett and inside linebacker Devin White were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Friday. Tampa Bay will also be without reserve defensive linemen Steve McLendon (COVID list) and Jeremiah Ledbetter (calf injury).
Rookie defensive lineman Khalil Davis, a sixth-round pick in April's draft, will get his second chance to play this season; he was also active in Week 12 against Kansas City. The Buccaneers also have reserve lineman Patrick O'Connor available and elevated rookie Benning Potoa'e from the practice squad on Saturday. To help with the absence of Carlton Davis, the Buccaneers also elevated cornerback Herb Miller. Both Miller and Potoa'e are active for the game.
As was the case when the Buccaneers and Falcons met two weeks ago in Atlanta, the Falcons will be without star wideout Julio Jones, who will miss his fourth straight game due to a hamstring injury. Russell Gage has joined Calvin Ridley in the Falcons' starting lineup with Jones out. The Atlanta offense will also be missing starting center Alex Mack, who sat out last week's game with a concussion and has since been placed on the COVID list. Rookie Matt Hennessy started in Mack's place last week.
The Buccaneers announced their list of inactives at 11:30 a.m. ET, 90 minutes before their scheduled kickoff against the Falcons. Barrett, White and McClendon don't count against the active roster while on the COVID list but the team signed inside linebacker Jack Cichy on Saturday. That move, along with the two practice squad elevations, gives the Buccaneers 53 available players on Sunday, which means they must declare five of them inactive in order to get to the game day limit of 48.
The Falcons had to declare seven players inactive. They came into game day with 55 players, having elevated three from the practice squad on Sunday and with C Alex Mack on the COVID list.
- CB Carlton Davis
- QB Ryan Griffin
- TE Tanner Hudson
- DL Jeremiah Ledbetter
- RB LeSean McCoy
Davis and Ledbetter are out due to injury.
- CB Darqueze Dennard
- CB Tyler Hall
- WR Julio Jones
- TE Jared Pinkney
- WR Brandon Powell
- RB Qadree Ollison
- DT Deadrin Senat
Dennard, Jones and Powell are out due to injury.