The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have the tall task of trying to take down the Atlanta Falcons in week eight. Not only do they have to attempt to beat their division rivals at the Georgia Dome, but they’ll also likely be without one of their best offensive players.
Per reports, star wide receiver Vincent Jackson is likely out this week due to a lingering knee injury. Jackson suffered the injury in Tampa Bay’s week seven loss to the Washington Redskins and ended up sitting out the majority of the second half. Unable to practice this week, Jackson is in serious doubt to suit up against the Falcons.
#Bucs WR Vincent Jackson, who injured his knee last Sunday, is not expected to play this week, source says.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 28, 2015
The likely absence of Jackson puts added pressure of fellow receiver Mike Evans, who finally enjoyed a break out game last week and could be in for another huge outing in Atlanta. Jackson’s injury comes at a bad time, though, with tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins still not fully healthy (shoulder) and slot receiver Louis Murphy going down for the year with his own injury. Evans and hopefully Seferian-Jenkins will hope to pick up the slack against a beatable Atlanta pass defense, although the Bucs will likely have to sign a receiver or two off the street to round out their depth chart.
This is bad news for the Bucs, but probably terrific news for Mike Evans. Evans was a total beast last week, catching 8 of 12 targets for over 160 yards and a touchdown. The score was Evans’ first of the year, while the catches and yardage were also highs for 2015. It was a much-needed outburst, after Evans had been slowed by nagging injuries and inconsistent targets to start the season. Finally rounding into form after a fantastic rookie season a year ago, Evans is going to be in for a monster role on the road against the Falcons. Tampa Bay ws probably slated for a pass-happy day in this one, anyways, but now Evans might go into the new week as a legit top-10 option (if not better). You shouldn’t have any qualms about firing him up in regular fantasy football leagues, while he’s shaping up as a strong value play in DFS leagues in week eight. Seferian-Jenkins could also have solid value if he returns this week.