The Buccaneers and running back Doug Martin say that they don’t expect Martin’s shoulder injury to end his season, but, as expected, it is going to keep him from joining the rest of the team against the Panthers on Thursday night.
Martin has been ruled out for the game after missing practice every day of this abbreviated week. That will leave tailback duties to Mike James and Brian Leonard with the recently acquired Bobby Rainey also a possibility for playing time if the Bucs feel he’s up to speed quickly.
Reports early in the week indicated that Martin tore the labrum in his shoulder and could need season-ending surgery. The Bucs haven’t delved into specifics regarding his condition, but could be waiting to see if rest and rehab are able to allow Martin to return to the lineup.
The Bucs also ruled out guard Carl Nicks, who had surgery on his MRSA-infected foot last week, and running back Jeff Demps, who is recovering from groin surgery. Safety Dashon Goldson is questionable after leaving last week’s loss with a knee injury and wide receiver Mike Williams has the same designation because of a nagging hamstring injury.