Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Alterraun Verner has officially been ruled out of Friday’s preseason opener at the Jacksonville Jaguars.
“No, he will not play,” head coach Lovie Smith said after practice Tuesday.
Verner suffered a hamstring injury at the very beginning of training camp. It’s the same hamstring that plagued him during minicamp.
This offseason, he signed a four-year, $26.5 million deal with the Bucs, a move that allowed them to part ways with Darrelle Revis.
While Verner has begun running on the leg, there is no timetable set for his return, only that they’ll take it slow.
“We’re going to take our time with him. He’s had trouble with that hamstring on a couple of occasions. He’s making progress.”
Verner hasn’t had much time practicing in the new defense, but he’s not overly-concerned at this point.
“It was a concern when he got hurt. You can’t do much about that. I’ve seen too many football players miss time in training camp. I think it has very little bearing on what happens later on.
“He’s been through a lot of work with us though, so we feel pretty confident that he’ll be able to get our defense down and be able to play at a high level for it.”
Cornerback Mike Jenkins, who is listed at the top of the depth chart opposite Verner, also missed practice on Tuesday. He is battling a groin injury.
Free safety Dashon Goldson is looking stronger by the day following foot surgery, including an interception on Monday. Coach Smith said the team is still undecided about his participation for Friday.
“We’re still deciding that. It’s just training camp for us. We’ll let the guys know in the next couple of days who plays.”