Some bad news came out of Tampa Bay this week as the Bucs (7-3) learned that leading rusher
RB Earnest Graham is likely lost for the season after suffering an ankle injury on Sunday against Minnesota. A despondent Bucs coach Job Gruden told reporters earlier this week, “Earnest Graham’s ankle looks to be a serious injury and his status for the rest of the season is very much in question”.
The hit to the Bucs will be bad as Graham has had a good season thus far (132 rushes for 563 yards, 4 TDs, with 4.3 ypc average) and the tough back along with quarterback Jef Garcia was leading a rejuvenated Bucs squad. Now Tampa Bay will turn to Cadillac Williams — just activated from the PUP list last week — and veteran Warrick Dunn. One player the Bucs will not have is veteran RB Michael Bennett, who was released last week to make room for Williams on the roster (recently signed by the Chargers as LT’s backup).
It will be interesting to see how the Bucs and Gruden recover from the loss of their best running back, but rest assured head coach Jon Gruden always has an “ace” up his sleeve. Right now the Bucs are right behind the NFC South leading Panthers (8-2) and it should be a good race down the stretch.