Mike Evans Misses Buccaneers Practice with Leg Injury Ahead of Game vs. Browns

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 19, 2019

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - DECEMBER 16: Mike Evans #13 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers runs with the ball after catching a first half pass against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on December 16, 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans was not on the practice field Monday, according to Eduardo A. Encina of the Tampa Bay Times.

"Evans exited Sunday's practice early when he was holding his left quad area after making a nice catch on a deep ball down the sideline," Encina wrote.

"He didn't return to practice and did not participate in the drills open to media on Monday."

Evans has been a dominant pro since his 2014 NFL arrival, amassing five 1,000-yard seasons and earning two Pro Bowl berths.

The 6'5", 231-pound wideout, who the Bucs drafted seventh overall in 2014, provides quarterbacks with a large security blanket downfield if needed.

However, Tampa signal-callers have sometimes encountered trouble finding Evans: The sixth-year wideout has just a 55.1 percent catch rate for his career.

Still, Evans is one of the game's most durable and reliable offensive threats. He only missed three games over his first five seasons, and one was due to a suspension after a fight during a game against the New Orleans Saints in 2017. He hasn't been sidelined for a matchup since a hamstring injury forced him off the field in Week 1 of the 2015 season.

The Bucs are in trouble if Evans misses any time, although the extent of his injury is unclear with the team's home opener slated for Sunday, Sept. 8, against the San Francisco 49ers.

Evans has averaged 143.4 targets per season over his past five years and is responsible for much of the team's offensive production.

Still, Tampa Bay would need to find a way to forge ahead. Gone are wideouts Adam Humphries and DeSean Jackson, but Chris Godwin should do an adequate job as the team's top pass-catcher in Evans' absence. The third-year pro out of Penn State caught 59 passes for 842 yards and seven touchdowns.

Breshad Perriman would also see more reps. The former Baltimore Raven and Cleveland Brown had 16 catches for 320 yards and two scores last season.

Otherwise, tight ends O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate would absorb more targets. Howard had 34 catches for 565 yards and five scores last season, and Brate posted 30-289-6.