There was more bad news for the fading Buccaneers a day after their loss to the Saints.
DT Gerald McCoy was placed on injured reserve, ending his season, the team announced. McCoy tore his right biceps in the first quarter of Tampa Bay's loss at New Orleans on Sunday. It was his first game back after missing the previous two games with an ankle injury.
It's a familiar injury for McCoy, the third overall pick in the 2010 draft. He tore his left biceps in Week 14 last season and missed the final three games.
Tampa Bay was left with just two true, and healthy, defensive tackles against the Saints with McCoy's backup, Frank Okam, inactive with a calf injury. The Bucs' defense was gashed for 195 yards rushing. It appears the team will look to sign a free-agent D-tackle in the next couple of days. PFW correspondent Roy Cummings, a beat writer for the Tampa Tribune, reported that John McCargo, a sixth-year veteran with one start and 2½ sacks in 40 career games, will visit the team on Tuesday. McCargo was selected in the first round of the 2006 draft by Buffalo and spent a couple of weeks with the Bucs in the preseason but didn't make the team.
The PFW spin
The Bucs will miss McCoy's presence inside as they try to rebound after losing two in a row and three of their last four games.
McCoy has had his moments — he had a team-high six tackles, one sack, three tackles for loss and two QB hits against the Colts in Week Four — but had only five tackles, no sacks and one QB hit in the other games he played in this season. He had three sacks in 13 games last season, but didn't get his first one until Week 11. That's not the kind of production you expect from the third overall pick in the draft.
A combination of injuries and inconsistent play has his career off to a disappointing start. He still has the potential to become one of the more disruptive interior D-linemen in the league, though, if he works hard at his rehabilitation from the injury, improves and stays healthy.
As for the Bucs' immediate future, the schedule gets even tougher in the next couple of weeks with a home game against Houston and a road trip to Green Bay. The Bucs' chances of getting back to the place they were three weeks ago — two games above .500 — have taken a serious hit with their recent struggles. The Bucs look like a very mediocre squad as the NFC South race narrows to a two-team battle between the Saints and Falcons.
Follow Dan Parr on Twitter