The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were forced to downgrade starting cornerback Carlton Davis to "out" on their injury report prior to flying out to Charlotte on Saturday, but the news for their secondary was better on Sunday. Starting safety Mike Edwards, who missed the Buccaneers' Week Six game at Pittsburgh due to an elbow injury and was questionable for Sunday's game, was cleared to play against the Panthers. The same was true for starting right guard Shaq Mason, who was questionable after being limited during the practice week by an ankle injury, which keeps the Buccaneers' offensive line at full strength.
The Buccaneers' defensive backfield will still be missing Davis, safety Logan Ryan (now on injured reserve) and cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting. The Buccaneers elevated second-year cornerback Anthony Chesley and rookie safety Nolan Turner from the practice squad Saturday to provide some added depth.
Tight end Cameron Brate is on the Buccaneers' inactive list Sunday after he suffered a frightening neck injury in Pittsburgh. The timetable for Brate's return to the field is not yet known but he was a welcome sight the team facility during the week after being carted off the field on a stabilizing board last Sunday.
"The fact that he's walking around and feeling better is fine," said Head Coach Todd Bowles. "I don't know how much closer he is to playing right now, but the fact that he's walking around and functioning well is a good thing."
With Brate unavailable, veteran tight end Kyle Rudolph will be active for the third time this season after joining the team shortly before the start of training camp in July. He will join rookie tight ends Cade Otton and Ko Kieft.
The Buccaneers and Panthers submitted their list of inactives at 11:30 a.m. ET on Sunday, 90 minutes before the scheduled kickoff of their Week Seven matchup at Bank of America Stadium. The Buccaneers had elevated Chesley and Turner from the practice squad on Saturday, giving them a 53-man roster for the game. That means they had to name five inactives in order to get down to the active game limit of 48. The Panthers elevated quarterback Jacob Eason and cornerback Tae Hayes from their practice squad and also had to name seven inactives.
The Panthers placed starting center Pat Elflein on injured reserve on Saturday and will turn to veteran Bradley Bozeman, who joined the team as an unrestricted free agent during the offseason. On the other side of the trenches, defensive tackle Matt Ioannidis (neck/concussion protocol) is inactive for the Panthers activated defensive tackle Bravvion Roy from injured reserve on Saturday. Also, Carolina will be without standout second-year cornerback Jaycee Horn, who is dealing with an injury to his ribs.
Quarterback P.J. Walker will get his second consecutive start as Baker Mayfield is also among the Panthers' inactives due to an ankle injury.
- TE Cameron Brate
- CB Carlton Davis
- T Fred Johnson
- DL Akiem Hicks
- WR Julio Jones
- CB Sean Murphy-Bunting
- QB Kyle Trask
Brate, Davis, Hicks, Jones and Murphy-Bunting are out due to injury.
· DE Henry Anderson
· CB Jaycee Horn
· DT Matt Ioannidis
· QB Baker Mayfield
· LB Chandler Wooten
Anderson, Horn, Ioannidis and Mayfield are out due to injury.