The Buccaneers are getting healthier, but will still have multiple starters out for Sunday’s matchup with the Dolphins.
Head coach Bruce Arians told reporters in his Friday press conference that tight end Rob Gronkowski (ribs), safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (concussion), and defensive lineman Patrick O'Connor (calf) have all been ruled out for Week Five. All three players weren’t able to practice at all this week.
But Arians also said edge rusher Jason Pierre-Paul (shoulder), cornerback Jamel Dean (knee), and running back Giovani Bernard (knee) should all be ready to play. Pierre-Paul has missed the last two games to try and let the shoulder injury heal. Dean missed last week’s victory over the Patriots, and has a chance to start on Sunday. Bernard also missed last week’s game after injuring his knee in the loss to the Rams.
Dean’s return could be a significant boost to a secondary that had newly signed Richard Sherman starting opposite Carlton Davis last week. But Davis is now heading to injured reserve with his quad injury. He joins cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting, who is on the list with an elbow injury.