Jun 12, 2012; Charlotte, NC, USA Carolina Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart (28) catches a pass during minicamp at the team

Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Injury Report

INJURIES FOR WEEK 1 per published lists on NFL.com:

Carolina Panthers:

Name Position Injury Practice Status Game Status

Jeff Byers C – Knee – Did Not Participate In Practice – Out
Jon Beason LB – Thigh – Full Participation in Practice – Probable
Steve Smith WR – Foot – Full Participation in Practice – Probable
Jonathan Stewart – RB – Ankle Did Not Participate In Practice – Questionable

Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Name Position Injury Practice Status Game Status
E.J. Biggers CB – Foot – Limited Participation in Practice – Doubtful
Anthony Gaitor CB – Hamstring – Limited Participation in Practice – Doubtful
Arrelious Benn WR – Knee – Full Participation in Practice – Questionable

What does it mean?

Teams are never more healthy than they are in week one, and both these teams enter the season without any real significant injuries. Panthers’ RB Jonathan Stewart is “questionable” – which usually means he’s either Tom Brady in a great disguise or he may sit out entirely – he happens to be in the deepest backfield in the NFL, so there’s no reason to push things if there’s truly any “question” about his health at all. DeAngelo Williams and offseason acquisition Mike Tolbert – along with Cam’s occasional laying of rubber – will give this potent ground attack more than enough explosiveness to be effective. Center Jeff Byers is obviously a backup to All-Pro C Ryan Kalil. Steve Smith’s foot was cut in the Miami game and he should be healed by now.

The only real concern I have is about Jon Beason. He saw very little (if any, not even sure there) action in the preseason as the Panthers’ staff rests his Achilles injury the maximum amount of time and he’s also got a strained calf if I remember correctly. Future All-Pro LB Luke Kuechly, the team’s top draft pick, is still listed as the ROLB/WLB in Rivera’s 3-4, but his natural position is MLB. Beason’s injury has clouded the picture at LB the entire preseason. Whether that’s a concern or just an excuse for Rivera not to show his hand somewhat remains to be seen. We’re about to find out.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have had issues at CB for some time, and the offseason hasn’t helped much. This isn’t the place to go through all their problems, but when Aqib Talib pulls out a handgun and takes shots at his sister’s boyfriend, there are issues there. Two corners are doubtful – meaning they probably won’t play – and WR Arrelious Benn is “questionable” so the skill positions are a tad thin for the Bucs.

The injury picture favors the Panthers this week.

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Tags: Carolina Panthers Pregame Injury Report Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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