Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

What will Bucs do at backup quarterback with Griffin hurt?

CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 11: Ryan Griffin #4 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers passes the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals in the fourth quarter of a preseason game at Paul Brown Stadium on August 11, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 11: Ryan Griffin #4 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers passes the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals in the fourth quarter of a preseason game at Paul Brown Stadium on August 11, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Bucs quarterback Ryan Griffin was forced to leave Friday's 23-12 preseason loss to the Bengals early in the fourth quarter when he injured his right throwing shoulder after being hit attempting to complete a pass to receiver Freddie Martino. Griffin is undergoing further evaluations today. It's unknown whether it will force him to miss playing time.

For Griffin, who enters his third season with a real chance to become the Bucs' No. 2 quarterback behind Jameis Winston, the timing couldn't be worse. Griffin has thrown the football very accurately in training camp and may have had a slight edge over Jets free agent veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick entering Friday's game. Alternating every series with Fitzpatrick after Winston left the game early in the second quarter, Griffin completed 4-of-9 passes for 57 yards but failed to produce any points prior to his injury.

"Yeah, I mean any injury is tough,'' Fitzpatrick said. "You hate to see your teammates get injured or anyone get injured. Ryan was having an exceptional camp. He's been playing great, so that was tough to see him get an opportunity and then go down.''

Bucs coach Dirk Koetter said Griffin caught a bad break but was uncertain of his condition. "(The competition) is close,'' Koetter said. "Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) looked like he played a lot of football, and of course, we wanted to see Griff play a lot. (His injury) was an unfortunate, freak thing. When he got hit, he fell on his shoulder and the guy landed on him. He still is being evaluated. It was unlucky for Griff and what we expected from Fitz. It was good to see Sefo (Liufau) get in there because he hasn't been getting a lot of reps.''

So what will the Bucs do now? A lot depends on whether Griffin can return before the end of the preseason. He still is eligible for the practice squad, but that would mean having to release him and hoping nobody signed him. Would the Bucs consider signing another quarterback? Before you start a campaign for Colin Kaepernick, consider that most teams only keep two quarterbacks and the combination of Winston-Fitzpatrick gerald is a good one.

Fitzpatrick still is getting used to the Bucs' system under Koetter but managed to produce a touchdown and field goal. "I think it was nice to get into a game situation with Dirk calling the plays and figuring out the tempo and the pace that we're going to have,'' Fitzpatrick said. "Making sure I'm operating the offense with the same procedure as Jameis. That's my been my goal and focus and something I've had to work on since I've been here because it's different than what I've experienced.''

On Friday, Koeter had Fitzpatrick and Griffin alternate every other series, which makes it difficult to get into rhythm. "That's part of it,'' Fitzpatrick said. "I've done it every which way, so I know you've always got to be ready to get in there and when you're in there, you've always got to take advantage of your opportunities.''

Sign up for Bucs Red Zone

A daily report of whats happening inside the locker room and on the field.

 

Sign up for our other newsletters

(View our Privacy Policy)

Sign up for Bucs Red Zone

A daily report of whats happening inside the locker room and on the field.

 

Sign up for our other newsletters

(View our Privacy Policy)

What will Bucs do at backup quarterback with Griffin hurt? 08/12/17 [Last modified: Saturday, August 12, 2017 1:17pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. USF football and the undefeated degree of difficulty

    College

    TAMPA — In the wake of the latest solar eclipse, USF fans eagerly await the next astronomical phenomenon.

    USF head coach Charlie Strong leads his team during practice last month in Tampa. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  2. Nature Coast puts unbeaten streak on the line vs. IMG White

    Footballpreps

    BROOKSVILLE — Nature Coast currently rides a 22-game regular-season win streak, but first-year football coach Cory Johns was not around for any of those wins. Neither was most of his coaching staff. This is an entirely new campaign with new obstacles ahead.

    Nature Coast offensive lineman Louis Miele (66) blocks a Sunlake defensive player during the Clash 4 Clayton football scrimmage and fundraiser Aug. 12 at Springstead High School.
  3. Crosstown rivals Bloomingdale-Newsome kick off season

    Footballpreps

    LITHIA — In a week filled with area football rivalries, there is a game on the east side of Hillsborough County — Bloomingdale vs. Newsome — that has matured into a classic crosstown battle, complete with classic cliches.

    Bloomingdale wide receiver Ed Amos charges through a drill a few days before the big rivalry game against Newsome on Friday night.
  4. Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast: Several key players still sidelined

    Bucs

    Greg Auman gives an injury update, with several key players still sidelined from practice three days before the Bucs play the Cleveland Browns in Tampa, and a full recap of your favorite scenes from Tuesday …

    Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans was held out of practice Wednesday at One Buc Place. [CHARLIE KAIJO | Times]
  5. Playoff ambitions evident in opener for Zephyrhills, Wiregrass Ranch

    Footballpreps

    WESLEY CHAPEL — A new football season in Pasco County begins Friday night, but this one promises to be like none before it — with more math than ever. A new playoff system emphasizes schedule strength, making non-district tilts particularly important.

    Wiregrass Ranch wide receiver Jordan Miner catches a pass in spring practice at Wiregrass Ranch High School in Wesley Chapel on Monday, May 1, 2017.