With just two games left in the season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have unofficially shut down Pro Bowl guard Carl Nicks, even if they haven’t made a roster move indicating it.
Head coach Greg Schiano was asked by reporters Friday if Nicks was done for the year after suffering from a MRSA infection. “It would seem that way, yeah. There’s only one game after this so yeah, it would appear that way.”
He admitted to still holding out hope that Nicks would be able to return by the season’s end, despite suffering from a recurrence that kept him out of action and required surgery.
“You always have hope. That was as trying [of] an injury and everything around it so nothing surprised me on that. I just hope that he’s able to get well and that we’re able to get Carl back. That’s my main goal.”
Last year, Nicks’ season ended prematurely when he suffered a torn plantar plate in his toe, an injury that required surgery and forced him to miss the final nine games of the season.
In 2012 Nicks signed a five-year, $47.5-million contract, making him the highest paid offensive guard in the league, but the Bucs haven’t seen a whole lot of return on their investment.
By the season’s end, he will have played in just nine of 32 games between the toe injury and the infection.
As for the Bucs, it doesn’t appear they’ll make any roster moves, even with Nicks out for the year. The team has three more years with him under contract, and placing him on the non-football injury list like they did with Lawrence Tynes, who was the first Bucs player to contract MRSA, wouldn’t sit over well, while placing him on injured reserve would indicate the Bucs assumed liability over the infections, which the team has already denied.