Bucs in Wait and See mode when cornering
So where is the ever-evolving Bucs cornerback corps right now, with a trip to Atlanta looming this weekend? There is good news and a lot of uncertainties.
First off, the good news: There’s a chance Davis could play this weekend against the Falcons after missing the last seven games due to his calf injury. Davis has been the Bucs’ most reliable cornerback over the past three seasons on the field and has led the entire NFL with 37 passes defended in the combined 2019-20 seasons. He had five more breakups and one interception in his four games this year before losing to New England.
“He had a very good week of training last week and we’ll see how it works. [week] will, ”Arians said on Monday. “He had a great training before the game. For now, I hope it will be ready to roll. “
As for the uncertainty, it is still too early in the week to know if Dean will miss any games. Dean was injured making a side tackle against Colts tight end Jack Doyle in the Bucs’ fifth game of the game and did not return. Dee Delaney was his immediate replacement in the roster, but he only got a few shots before the Bucs turned to Pierre Desir the rest of the way. The Bucs may have to count on Delaney and Desir again next Sunday.
“Dean, again, he’s a wait-and-see guy with a bruised shoulder,” Arians said. “But it doesn’t look like there is any structural damage, so it might just be a pain tolerance thing.”
Desir was on hand for his second interception of the season on Sunday’s final game, but the Bucs would obviously like to have Dean on the pitch as much as possible. According to NFL Next Gen Stats, opposing passer have a 61.9 passer rating when targeting a player with Dean as the closest defender. Those passer had an expected completion rate of 58.8% on their passes in Dean’s area, but he only allowed 51.1% of them to be completed.
And so the Bucs will wait. And at the end of the week, they will see. Whatever cornerbacks are available when the team is ready to travel to Atlanta, the Bucs will put them on the pitch with confidence. As Arians noted on Monday, that’s quite a compliment to the team’s cornerback coach Kevin Ross. Rather, Ross is a former NFL star cornerback, known for his uncompromising style of play.
“Well Kevin was one of the toughest players I’ve ever coached and seen,” Arians said. “He brings the level of tenacity to his room. He does a great job of getting everyone prepared and ready to go just in case his number is called. And you better play fearless because that’s it. that he trains. “