Bucs CB Barber Practices, Expected To Play Sunday

November 20 – Tampa Bay cornerback Ronde Barber practiced Wednesday afternoon while sporting a cast on his fractured left thumb. Although Barber practiced, he is still listed as questionable for Sunday's huge game against Green Bay. PewterReport.com has the Buccaneers' latest injury report.

The Buccaneers received some good news Wednesday when starting cornerback Ronde Barber practiced despite having a cast on his fractured left thumb. Although he participated in Wednesday's workout, Barber is still listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the 8-2 Packers.

"He practiced with a cast on his hand and we're still going to list him as questionable," said Bucs head coach Jon Gruden. "We'll see how these next couple of days go. Again, if there is anybody that can play with a broken thumb in a cast at corner, it would be Ronde Barber."

Both Gruden and Barber's teammates sounded confident that the Bucs' starting cornerback would play against the Packers on Sunday.

"We all know Ronde," said Bucs cornerback Dwight Smith, who would replace Barber in the starting lineup if he's unable to play Sunday. "No (finger injury) will keep him out of this game. He's a warrior. We need him and hopefully he plays. I think he'll play and I think he'll play well."

Gruden said the team's physicians would continue to evaluate Barber's injury and they will make a decision in terms of whether or not he'll be able to play on Sunday later in the week.

"We'll just see how the injury handles itself in the next couple of days," said Gruden. "If he can move and is not inhibited by wearing the cast and he tells us he can go, we're going to go ahead and give him the green light and play him. As long as he's cleared medically by the training staff, we'll play the guy."

Barber suggested Wednesday afternoon that he would play Sunday.

"For me, it's not an issue," Barber said. "The doctor addressed the injury and surgery went well. I am playing, and for me it's business as usual. Practice went well – it was a good productive practice for me today."

If Barber cannot play, Smith will move from the nickel corner spot into the starting lineup while Bucs cornerbacks Corey Ivy and Tim Wansley will fill the nickel and dime spots.

"Ivy's a guy that's been active for every game and been a key part of the kicking game," said Gruden. "He's a tough guy, he can play in the nickel position. He's a guy that can go outside and compete at corner. He's a tough guy. He's in the mold of a Buccaneer corner. He's a thick, quick, very physical guy that has a lot of confidence. And Wansley's a guy that we think is going to be a heck of a player. He just found his stride toward the end of training camp. He had a serious offseason injury and he's not the biggest corner in the world, but he's a playmaker. We think he has the makings of being a real good player here."

While Barber practiced Wednesday, Bucs starting right tackle Kenyatta Walker did not. He was held out of the workout due to soreness in his right ankle, but the team expects him to play Sunday. If Walker can't go, backup tackle Cornell Green will start in his place.

"Kenyatta Walker didn't practice today," said Gruden. "He still has some soreness in his ankle. He's questionable for this game. If he can't go, it will be Cornell Green."

PewterReport.com has listed Tampa Bay's latest injury report below.

Probable (Player has a 75 percent chance of playing)
Questionable (Player has a 50 percent chance of playing)
Doubtful (Player has a 25 percent chance of playing)
Out (Player will not play)


DT Anthony McFarland (right forearm fracture) – Out
DE Corey Smith (left knee sprain) – Doubtful
CB Ronde Barber (left thumb fracture) – Questionable
RT Kenyatta Walker (right ankle sprain) – Probable

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