TAMPA BAY

USA TODAY Sports Weekly - - SPORTS -

Sto­ry­line of the week

Big names banged up: Depth along the of­fen­sive line and in the sec­ondary isn’t Tampa Bay’s strong suit, and both units will be tested head­ing into the reg­u­lar sea­son. The Bucs lost starters in LT Dono­van Smith and S Justin Evans be­fore last week’s game. There’s a chance both could be back in the lineup for Week 1, but they might not be at full ca­pac­ity. Both are key build­ing blocks for Tampa Bay’s fu­ture on both sides of the ball. Smith has started ev­ery game since Week 1 of his rookie year (48 in a row), and his re­place­ment is a con­verted guard who went un­drafted in 2015 (Michael Liedtke), while Evans’ ab­sence will put added pres­sure on rookie fourth-round pick Jor­dan White­head.

Rookie watch

LB Jack Cichy, a sixth-round pick out of Wis­con­sin, missed the 2017 sea­son with a knee in­jury. He fin­ished sec­ond on the team in tack­les vs. the Li­ons, and with Kendell Beck­with still work­ing his way back from an in­jury, he has a chance to earn a ros­ter spot with a strong fin­ish.

Luke Easter­ling, Bucs Wire

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