Tom Brady is scheduled to play in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ preseason finale on Saturday.

Tom Brady is scheduled to play in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ preseason finale on Saturday.

TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady is scheduled to play the third and final preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday.

Coach Todd Bowles didn’t say it directly, but when asked Thursday if Brady would play, he replied, “Anyone who is healthy will play.”

Brady, who returned this week after an 11-day absence to attend to “personal matters”, is in good health and trained hard Thursday, as well as Monday and Tuesday, with a Veterans Day on Wednesday. He did his usual number of reps and looked strong and focused.

It will be Brady’s first time playing this preseason, the first time he’s lined up with wide receiver Julio Jones in a game, and the first time he’s been behind a revamped inside offensive line with center second. year Robert Hainsey and left rookie Luke. Goedeke in live action.

“It’s important for the continuity of the game,” Bowles said of seeing Brady with the starters. “We have new guys on the offensive line. We have new guys at receiver. So in addition to having practiced together, we have to see them in a game with certain situations and just flow. No matter how long it that is to say, it is enough to see it”.

Bowles said he’s not concerned about Brady’s level of conditioning after such a long absence, or that Brady hasn’t had enough time to establish chemistry with Jones, wide receiver Russell Gage or the tight end Kyle Rudolph.

“He missed 11 days, but didn’t play the first two [juegos]Bowles said. “He’s fine with everything. We know his condition and he’s fine. He’s coming back with the boys. He’s throwing the ball and we’re good. I think he was built up before we left.”

“It’s about having everyone intact, practicing at the same time. You know his days would have ended the same day Julio was out and obviously Mike [Evans] he hurt himself; We didn’t have a full list there either, but they got to see a lot of side things and talked a lot. And I think the chemistry is good.”

The starting position at left guard remains undecided, but Bowles said Goedeke, who is competing with Nick Leverett for the job, will be the starter. Goedeke struggled last week against the Tennessee Titans with two pending calls and giving up a sack.

The fifth, sixth and possibly seventh – if the Bucs choose to keep seven wide receiver positions after Evans, Jones, Chris Godwin and Russell Gage are also up for grabs, with Tyler Johnson, Jaelon Darden, Scotty Miller, Breshad Perriman, Deven Thompkins and Jerreth Sterns compete for the remaining spots.

As for Brady, whose midterm break from training camp was unprecedented in the NFL for any uninjured player, let alone a seven-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback, Bowles said he won’t let him. wouldn’t have given the leave if he hadn’t. it was absolutely necessary.

“If it hadn’t been for a situation that we didn’t talk about that wasn’t important, I wouldn’t have done it,” Bowles said. “I have that kind of relationship, just like coaches with a lot of players and they all have private things that they talk to us about. It’s just come out more than the others. And we’re not going to walk away from that.” We don’t give anyone breaks just to take breaks.”

When healthy, Brady has appeared in at least one preseason game every year since being drafted in 2000. The only preseason he missed was in 2008 when he was a member of the New England Patriots struggling with foot and ankle injuries.

Godwin, who has been training with the team for three weeks and has started working 11v11 for the first time since suffering a torn ACL in Week 15, is not expected to play, although the coaching staff have been encouraged for your progress. .

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