Buccaneers weakside linebacker Derrick Brooks' play this season is one of the reasons Tampa Bay's defense is ranked No.1 in the league. Brooks recorded 47 tackles, one interception, one fumble recovery, three passes defensed and two touchdowns in the team's four October games and he was recognized by the National Football League Thursday when he was named NFC Defensive Player of the Month for October.
Brooks, who has recorded 82 tackles this season, became the only linebacker in NFL history to have four touchdowns on turnovers in a single season. He is currently tied for the NFL lead in interceptions with four and Brooks is tied for the Buccaneers' lead in touchdowns with fullback Mike Alstott.
This is the second time Brooks has received the Player of the Month Award. He won the honor for the first time in November last season.
NO CHANGE IN STATUS OF INJURED BUCS PLAYERS:
The Bucs were pleased to see quarterback Brad Johnson (broken rib) make it through his second consecutive day of practice Thursday, but Bucs head coach Jon Gruden will likely wait until Friday to announce who the team's starting quarterback will be against the Minnesota Vikings.
"He practiced and, again, threw the ball well," Gruden said of Brad Johnson. "And Shaun King took a bunch of snaps today, so we'll decide here in the next 48 hours. I thought Brad looked good again today. He said he felt good and he looked good."
While King took a good portion of the snaps Thursday, QB Rob Johnson (gluteal strain)was held out of practice for the second consecutive day. But Gruden said he thinks Rob Johnson will be ready to play if needed Sunday.
"I think he'll be better and will be able to play Sunday," Gruden said of Rob Johnson. "I don't know how this gluteal injury is going to feel here in the next couple of days, but he's improving. He didn't practice today, but I think he, in his own mind, is going to be ready to play."
Tampa Bay's injury report remained unchanged Thursday. Bucs wide receivers Keenan McCardell (fractured scapula) and Joe Jurevicius (knee/ankle sprain) were both held out of practice for the second consecutive day. Wide receivers Karl Williams, Reggie Barlow and Charles Lee all took reps in McCardell and Jurevicius' place Thursday.
PewterReport.com will post Tampa Bay's final injury report along with Minnesota's list of injured players Friday afternoon. Click here to view the Buccaneers' current injury report.
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