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Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Checking the injuries that matter most

By Pat Yasinskas
ESPN.com

TAMPA, Fla. -- I’m out at One Buccaneer Place, so let’s start our NFC South injury check with Tampa Bay.

Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (ankle), running back LeGarrette Blount (knee) and linebacker Mason Foster (ankle) did not practice Wednesday. The Bucs are prepared to go with Earnest Graham as their main running back Sunday if Blount can’t play. McCoy’s spot could be filled by a combination of Roy Miller and Frank Okam and the Bucs have said defensive end Da’Quan Bowers also could move inside in certain situations.

For New Orleans, receiver Devery Henderson (calf) and right tackle Zach Strief (knee) did not practice. Charles Brown already has been starting in Strief’s place and the Saints have good depth at wide receiver if Henderson isn’t ready to play against Tampa Bay.

Carolina linebacker Omar Gaither (knee) did not practice and is likely to be out for a couple of weeks. Right tackle Jeff Otah (back) also sat out practice, but there’s still hope he can play Sunday.

Atlanta’s injury list is getting longer and the Falcons already have ruled out receiver Julio Jones (hamstring) for Sunday's game. Tight end Tony Gonzalez (elbow) also missed practice. Defensive end John Abraham (groin) and center Todd McClure (knee), who did not play in Sunday night’s loss to Green Bay, also sat out Wednesday.