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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs QB Fitzpatrick repeats as NFC Player of the Week

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Sep 16, 2018; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) throws a touchdown pass in the first quarter in the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
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The role continues for “Fitzmagic” in Tampa Bay. As for the second straight week, QB Ryan Fitzpatrick has been named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week, off of yet another 400 yard, four touchdown performance Sunday against the Eagles.

The NFL made it official earlier on Wednesday:

As we have been writing, Fitzpatrick has had two record-breaking weeks at the Helm of the Buccaneers. He has become the only quarterback in the 99 year history of the NFL to throw for at least 400 yards and four or more touchdowns in the first two games of any season.

And, those outstanding numbers have led Tampa Bay to a surprising 2- 0 start against a schedule that most believed would be very difficult at New Orleans and against the champion Eagles.

Fitzpatrick was great on the very first play of the game Sunday, hitting DeSean Jackson with a 75-yard bomb for a touchdown. That is the longest play in Buccaneers history on the opening play of any game. He went on to spread the ball around throwing another 75 yard TD to tight end O.J. Howard in the first half, and then TD passes to receivers Chris Godwin and Mike Evans in the red zone.

Fitzpatrick is also the first Buccaneer player in history to garner player of the week honors in back-to-back weeks. He also is now tied with Tom Brady and Ben Roethlisberger for third place for most player of the week honors since the start of the 2014 season with six.

Aaron Rodgers has eight and Cam Newton has seven in that same time frame.

The voting is significant again this week, as Fitzpatrick could have easily lost out to Minnesota QB Kirk Cousins, who also threw for over 400 yards at Lambeau Field against the Packers in a wild 29-29 tie.

However, the “Fitzmagic” is just too much, apparently, at the moment.

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    Jivan

    September 19, 2018 at 2:16 pm

    What QB controversy? Two straight offensive player of the week and you even entertain the idea of taking him out? If you were Coach Koetter and need to win right now to keep your job? What would you do?

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs add LB White to crowded injury report Saturday

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Even though the Bucs are favored to win in Detroit on Sunday, their injuries and the possible effect it will have on them in Sunday’s game are mounting up.

First, as we wrote Friday, the most prominent Buccaneer on the injury report, quarterback Jameis Winston, is expected to play with a slightly cracked bone in his throwing thumb. Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians told the media after Friday’s practice that Winston was able to throw in the practice and should be good to go.

Now, comes word on Saturday the Bucs star defensive rookie, Devin White, is added to the injury report with an unknown illness. The team officially listed him as questionable before traveling to Detroit.

White, who was the fifth overall pick in last year’s draft has been coming on the second half of the season putting together a 10 tackle, two sack game against Matt Ryan and the Falcons. And, a week later in the game against the Jaguars, he had an interception of Nick Foles and a fumble return for a touchdown both in the first quarter of Tampa Bay’s easy win.

Those games helped White be named the NFC Defensive Rookie of the month for November.

If he cannot go, it is expected that veteran Kevin Minter will slide into White’s role alongside Pro Bowl veteran Lavonte David. Minter played for several games earlier this year, when White was out with a sprained knee ligament.

The Buccaneers will already also be without wide receiver Mike Evans, who suffered a hamstring injury on his 61-yard touchdown catch last week against the Colts. It is likely that Evans will be done for the season with the injury, but Tampa Bay did not place him on IR, yet, this week.

That means the Tampa Bay’s other top target, WR Chris Godwin, will be more heavily counted on against the Lions. Godwin is having a fantastic third season, where he has been in the top five all year long in receptions and yardage.

The Bucs have another serious concern with the status of left tackle Donovan Smith. He was injured in the second half of the Colts win Sunday, and has not practiced all week with what’s listed as a knee/ankle injury. Smith, who’s never missed a game since coming into the NFL in 2015 is listed as doubtful. If Smith cannot go, the Buccaneers will likely turn to veteran Josh Wells, who has played sparingly at both tackle spots this season.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs QB Winston threw Friday- will play Sunday

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
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After a week of debate, as to whether or not Buccaneers starting quarterback Jameis Winston would be able to play Sunday at Detroit, head coach Bruce Arians made it clear: he’s in.

Arians told the media that Winston was able to throw the football for the first time all week during Friday’s final practice and he will start Sunday:

“He’s fine. He’s ready to go,” Arians said in announcing that his QB will start against the lowly Lions.

Winston hurt the hand late in the second quarter of Sunday’s wild 38 – 35 comeback win over the Colts. When he came out for the second half, Winston had trouble gripping the ball and actually went in for an x-ray, while back up Ryan Griffin quarterbacked the team for a series.

Winston returned and went on the lead the Bucs to 17 points, including throwing the game-winning touchdown pass to Breshad Perriman in the final five minutes of the game, as Tampa Bay won for the third time in a row.

As we wrote on Thursday, Winston was seen throwing a tennis ball during the portion of practice open to media. This as part of simulating his throwing motion on reps with the receivers. It wasn’t known if Winston tried to throw at all Thursday in the closed portion of the practice.

Winston has been a lightning rod of both praise and criticism, as he currently leads the NFL with 23 interceptions, including three more Sunday. However, he is also second in the NFL in touchdown passes (26) and total passing yards going into play in week 15.

If Winston is bothered by the injured hand, then Griffin will be counted on to take over. He’s in his seventh season, but last week was his first regular season action of his career in Tampa Bay. Griffin has played well in each of the last two preseasons for the Buccaneers.

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