Bucs G Kevin Pamphile – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
The Bucs should be back to full strength along the offensive line Sunday as they try to keep the Seattle Seahawks’ ferocious pass rush away from quarterback Jameis Winston.
Starting left guard Kevin Pamphile, out for the past two games because of a concussion, has been cleared to play, head coach Dirk Koetter said Friday.
“I’m happy to report Kevin is out of the protocol and good to go,” Koetter said from the practice fields at One Buc Place.
Pamphile suffered the concussion during Tampa Bay’s 43-28 home loss against NFC South-leading Atlanta on Nov. 3. The third-year pro managed to be a full participant in practice all last week leading up to the Bucs’ game in Kansas City, but lingering concussion symptoms prohibited him from making the trip.
Pamphile’s return would allow Tampa Bay to begin Sunday’s game with its full starting offensive line for the first time since that early November Falcons game.
“Just like getting Doug [Martin] back, getting one of your top run blockers back, we had been able to consistently overcome injuries at every position,” Koetter said. “We’ve done a good job of that this year. Every time we get a starter back we’re happy about it.”
Caleb Benenoch and Ben Gottschalk took turns filling it at left guard the last two games. The young linemen played side-by-side two weeks ago against Chicago, with Gottschalk taking over for backup Evan Smith at center. Gottschalk started last week in Kansas City but went down with a knee injury and was replaced by Benenoch.
Martin missed six straight games with a hamstring injury before coming back and starting the last two. He’s rushed for only 96 yards on 40 carries since returning.
The Bucs will be facing a Seattle defense that’s tied with Buffalo for the NFL lead in sacks with 31 and that’s 11th in rushing defense, surrendering 98.4 yards per game.
Good news to hear. Go Bucs!
Good to have Big Kev back in the lineup. Gonna need every man and a large baby to win this one. Go Bucs!
Good to hear. We should be better on the line in all regards. Running game should improve and Winston should have more time to find the open guy. Gives us a fighting chance.
Well if he wasn’t able to play we could have started J.R. Sweezy. Uhhhh, nevermind.
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