Murphy Injury Could Guarantee Six Receivers

August 29th, 2014

Louis Murphy didn’t return after a nasty hit last night. (Photo courtesy of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Wide receiver Louis Murphy took an ugly hit on the sidelines in the second half of last night’s game. He didn’t return and was classified as having a lower back injury.

That probably locked up a roster spot for Chris Owusu, and possibly another receiver.

Murphy will make the final 53-man roster, which will be released today or tomorrow. He’s got experience (121 career catches) and performed consistently through the summer.

Rookies Solomon Patton and Robert Herron are also locks. Patton is the punt returner/kick returner, and the organization loves Herron. Plus Herron has shown he can get open and run routes well for a rookie, but the guy will have to squeeze the darn football more often to have any kind of NFL shelf life. General manager Jason Licht praised Herron’s progress during the WFLA-TV game broadcast last night.

That’s five receivers, when you add in starters Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans.

Lovie Smith has referenced having five or six receivers on a few occasions. And Joe’s sure Murphy’s injury will force a sixth receiver to be added.

Chris Owusu (13 career catches) seems to be the likely sixth. But if Murphy is deemed available for opening day, Joe wouldn’t consider Owusu a slam dunk since he doesn’t play special teams. Lovie has said his “fifth or sixth receiver” must play special teams. Also, Owusu is practice squad eligible, and the Bucs might believe he’ll clear waivers and they could sneak him on the practice squad.

Joe doesn’t rule out WR Russell Shepard landing as the sixth receiver. He was a special teams standout last season, a favorite of Dave Wannstedt.

14 Responses to “Murphy Injury Could Guarantee Six Receivers”

  1. biff barker Says:

    I hate the 4th preseason game. Lot’s of late and cheap hits during amateur hour.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I believe your analysis is right on target……Owusu to the practice squad with Shepard making it because of special teams…..Is Shepard practice squad eligible?

  3. nate Says:

    Would of rather kept tommy streeter!

  4. Kurius Boy Says:

    I don’t know how Russell Sheppard is making the team. I didn’t see anything from him the whole preseason. We can get anyone to play special teams. It’s not that hard to do with practice. Give that spot to someone who earned it

  5. andres Says:

    @nate Streeter for sure. Herron’s hands are suspect but so is Patton’s. Murphy will be a big loss. It seems this administration values speed over catching ability which is just wrong on so many levels.

  6. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    It’s a numbers game and someone will get left out at a skill spot: WR, TE, RB, and FB

    6 wr, 4 TE, 1 fb, 3 rb?

  7. willie D Says:

    sounds like they could use a guy like Eric Page. Hear he is available. He was a top 3rd return guy last year and only fumbled once, and that was on a ill advised trick play in a desperation move. Oh wait your dumb ass coach cut him in favor of a hometown hero. Good luck starting on the 15 yard line. How many times did Patton get to the 20 last night…..0.(and that was against 4th stringers.

  8. willie D Says:

    to be fair I am the president of the Eric Page fan club.

  9. INDYbucsfan Says:

    Did anyone see Shepard time the punt tackle to perfection last night? I had to rewind it like 4 times just to make sure it was legal. It was an amazing play.

  10. Skyline Crew Says:

    I want to know how Kafka keeps his position after last nights performance. He was awful.

  11. canadian bucsfan Says:

    @ nate
    I agree with having Steeter. Does anyone know is they tried Chris O. At punt/kick return?

  12. Architek Says:

    WTH was Louis Murphy out there for?

    To accomplish what !!!!

  13. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    Owusu is a slam dunk no matter what Joe thinks. Period.

  14. willie D Says:

    If Owusu is a slam dunk they should not allow reporters in practice.