Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin returns, Mike Evans injured


Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin returns, Mike Evans injured

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin grabs a pass during practice at the team’s training facility Friday in Tampa, Fla. Photo by Steve Nesius/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 5 (UPI) — Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin returned to the practice field Friday for the first time since his 2021 ACL tear. Fellow wide receiver Mike Evans left the session early due to an injury.

“It was good to see him running around and getting some individual work,” Buccaneers coach Todd Bowles told reporters. “It’s always a plus when he is in uniform.”

Godwin, 26, is entering his sixth season. The 2019 Pro Bowl selection totaled 98 catches for 1,103 yards and five catches in 14 starts last season.

He missed the final three regular-season games, and the postseason, due to his knee injury, which he sustained Dec. 19. Godwin signed a three-year, $60 million contract extension in March.

Bowles said Godwin isn’t yet ready for full contact work.

“We aren’t going to rush him,” Bowles said. “We are just glad to see him working. As it goes on, we will see.”

“We don’t have our hopes up. We are just happy he is making progress.”

Evans, the Buccaneers’ top wide receiver, appeared to irritate a muscle and walked to the training room.

“I saw him walk in,” Bowles said. “He might have tweaked a hamstring, but I’ll see when I go inside [the facility].”

Evans, a four-time Pro Bowl selection, totaled 74 catches for 1,035 yards and 14 touchdowns in 16 starts last season. He totaled at least 1,000 receiving yards in each of his first eight seasons in the NFL.

Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady was granted an excused absence from Friday’s session in Tampa, Fla. Bowles said he didn’t know if Brady would practice Saturday at the AdventHealth Training Center.

The Buccaneers will host the Miami Dolphins in their first preseason game Aug. 13 at Raymond James Stadium.

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