Doctor: Sean Murphy-Bunting Might Be Out Three Weeks

September 13th, 2021

Former NFL doctor chimes in.

Don’t expect an official Bucs update on cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting’s dislocated elbow until tomorrow. But that won’t keep a former NFL team doctor from weighing in.

Dr. David Chao, once the team physician of the San Diego Chargers, has become sort of a cult hero in the NFL community because he is widely available to offer background information and recovery-time estimates for injuries to players.

The NFL, populated by people more paranoid than stoned teenagers pulling bongs in their parents’ garage while skipping school, is ever so reluctant to offer up injury intel.

Chao welcomes the questions.

Of course, Chao can only go by what the Bucs release and what he sees on TV. The Bucs claim that SMB dislocated his elbow in the season-opener Thursday night. Chao doesn’t have access to SMB’s MRI or X-Rays.

The video of SMB’s injury was gnarly and it knocked him out of the game.

Given SMB’s social media activity since, he is in very good spirits at worst.

On his website, Chao notes he does not believe SMB’s injury to be serious and his best diagnosis from the west coast is that SMB could miss three games. Chao thinks SMB is likely to be placed on the injured reserve list and will be activated after the mandatory three-week wait.

This year the NFL decided to continue a practice it began last year. An unlimited number of players may be placed on injured reserve and then be eligible to return to active status after a minimum three-week siesta.

22 Responses to “Doctor: Sean Murphy-Bunting Might Be Out Three Weeks”

  1. SB~LV Says:

    Every bit of 3 weeks !

  2. Seattle Buc is back in TB Says:

    I remember in 2002 when Eagles punter Jay Feely was hit during a punt and thrown up into the air. He caught himself with one hand on the way down and his body weight popped his elbow out. It looked nasty on TV but he was back out there punting a few weeks later.

  3. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    Good, we need him back as soon as he is ready. DBs are too thin as it is.

  4. zzbuc Says:

    We are thin on DB´s and average on CB…..I would think about making a trade…..we have to many TE and WR……

  5. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    zzbuc, right on and great idea…..the bucs secondary is not very good and hopefully bowles can get more pressure to help them out

  6. PSL Bob Says:

    That’s actually good news if it’s accurate. I thought he might be out much longer. The Bucs seem to have an excellent medical and training staff. So if he makes it back after two week, that wouldn’t be a huge surprise. We need SMB on the field!

  7. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We will miss him greatly for the Rams game…..The Falcons & Patriots not as much.

  8. SOEbuc Says:

    I heard this like two days and was like “why the hell hasn’t Joe posted this?”

  9. Buc4evr Says:

    After watching the Rams game last night, if we let their receivers get behind the secondary we are toast. The Front seven has to really step up, even if SMB makes it back.

  10. SOEbuc Says:

    *two days ago

  11. SOEbuc Says:

    We really need Whitehead to return now. Arians talks a lot of BS when it comes to talking about a players major injury. From what I heard on a site I trust (where I heard this two days ago) is like a minimum 3-4 weeks. That’s scary but at least it happened in a week one W if that means any sense. Front seven definitely needs to step its game up from last week at getting to the QB.

  12. JGhotier Says:

    Not so sure about that

    Look at ACL Recovery Club’s Twitter page (can find in Google images if you type “Sean Murphy Bunting injury” too). He has a pic of the play and you can see bone coming out of skin at elbow clearly. That’s compound fracture territory is it not?

    Look at that pic and tell me if 3 weeks is even feasible….

  13. Joe Says:

    Look at that pic and tell me if 3 weeks is even feasible…

    Joe doesn’t want to look at that pic if true. And a former NFL team doctor *did* see the video — as did a national TV audience and this is the first Joe has heard he had a compound fracture. So Joe isn’t sure if you saw a doctored picture or not.

    Guess time will tell what SMB’s injury truly is.

    (Joe will admit while in the press box the first time he saw the video he though SMB broke his arm.)

  14. mark2001 Says:

    I know we live in a day and age where we discount professional opinions. But if Dr. Choa / a former NFL team doctor saw the injury, and think likely 3 weeks, I’ll lean towards their professional opinions.

  15. PassingThru Says:

    Three weeks is good news, an elbow dislocation can take twice that.

  16. David Says:


    I saw that picture and it’s not clear. I don’t know if that’s actually bone. Regardless, I assumed he was going to be out a month at least.
    Dean needs to step up!

  17. Ftmyersbuc Says:

    Yall chill out. Its one game. They won a superbowl ffs. These boys are gonna be ok. They gave up a few to a good offense? So what its the NFL and it will happen again. Everyones capable of beating everyone in the nfl, thats why its great. They got gassed cause the rbs gloves were apparently covered in ky and the d had to play 3 or 4 drives back to back. Not even a 3 and out it was a 1 and out

  18. Stanglassman Says:

    3-5 weeks. 4th game is a short week (Eagles) and unlikely to activate him between games for that one. I think the most likely scenario is we’ll be back for game 7 vs the Bears.

  19. PassingThru Says:

    On a similar note: Lamarcus Joyner tore the tendon in his elbow. He’s out for the season. Let’s hope it is only 3 weeks, that would mean very minor tendon damage.

  20. JGhotier Says:


    There’s a 7 second video clip of it on ACL Recovery Club’s Twitter page (I’m not signed up for Twitter so anyone can see whether you have account or not).

    To me, it looks bone through skin, but it’s not definitive by any means. I’m hoping I’m wrong tbh and I’m holding out hope…that video gives me a lot of hesitation though

    Here’s to hoping I’m wrong and I’d love to be 🥃

  21. firethecannons Says:

    See the great SMB after the bye!

  22. Anonymous Says:

    I’ve had the same exact injury . It’s three weeks before the swelling subsides. And another three at least before you can wipe your arse without pain .