Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston suffered an AC joint sprain in his throwing shoulder against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 7. But he will suit up for Tampa Bay’ Week 7 matchup against the Buffalo Bills, according to Tampa Bay’s Twitter account.
During third down of the opening possession against the Cardinals, Winston absorbed a ferocious hit from linebacker Chandler Jones and fell on his right shoulder. Winton’s pass fell incomplete, and the offense left the field.
Winston went to the sidelines to loosen his arm up. He briefly retuned to the game, but the Buccaneers took him out the game and thrust backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick into the lineup.
After the game, Winston told ESPN’s Jenna Laine that he began to feel the pain in his right shoulder while warming up on the sidelines. “I tried to battle it out. Sitting on the sideline only makes it worse. It stiffens it all,” Winston said.
Even though the Cardinals won 38-33, Fitzpatrick had a solid performance — throwing for 290 yards to go along with three touchdowns and two interceptions. Winston went through X-rays after the game, and they came back negative.
On Monday, he underwent an MRI and was diagnosed with a sprained AC joint in his right shoulder, according to Laine. Winston was listed as day-to-day, and there was no structural damage done to the shoulder.
Head coach Dirk Koetter said they will “be able to see at some point this week” how the injury is affecting Winston’s velocity.
“The way I understand it, he will be cleared medically to play,” Koetter said. “I know Jameis can handle a lot of pain — that’s not gonna be an issue — I think it’s going to be more of, ‘Does Jameis feel like he can play at the level he needs to play at?’ Obviously, the No. 1 thing in all of this is Jameis’ long-term health. That has to be the No. 1 thing.”
Winston didn’t throw on Wednesday or Thursday, but he attempted passes during Friday’s practices. His arm looked good.
Video: More of Bucs QB Jameis Winston throwing in practice today for first time since injuring shoulder Sunday against Arizona. pic.twitter.com/YpvqHqOo9k
— Greg Auman (@gregauman) October 20, 2017
Fortunately for the Buccaneers, Winston will play against the Bills this weekend. They can now breathe a sigh of relief.
What does this mean?
Even though Fitzpatrick had a solid performance against Arizona, he cannot orchestrate this offense as well as Winston. Tampa Bay is currently 2-3 and is in last place in the NFC South. If the Buccaneers want to make a push for the playoffs, they need a healthy Winston to lead the way.