Tampa Bay Buccaneers to be without Jason Pierre-Paul, Jaydon Mickens vs. Los Angeles Rams

Stephen A. Smith explains why it wouldn't surprise him if Tom Brady's team looks past the Rams before his return to New England. (1:06).
Stephen A. believes the Bucs could be susceptible to a letdown against the Rams (1,06).

TAMPA (Fla.) -- Coach Bruce Arians announced Friday that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would not be starting outside linebacker Jason Pierre Paul and kick returner Jaydon Nickens in Sunday's match at Los Angeles Rams.

Antonio Brown, wide receiver, was also placed on the reserve/COVID-19 roster earlier this week. However, it is unlikely that he will play. To travel under NFL rules, Brown must be fully symptomatic for 24hrs and pass two COVID-19 test 24 hours apart.

Pierre-Paul has been suffering from shoulder and hand injuries. Mickens has been suffering from an abdominal injury. Both did not practice this week. Joe Tryon-Shoyinka is a rookie first-round draft selection that the Bucs picked with the 32nd overall pick from Washington. He previously served in a rotating role in the Bucs' first two games.

Mickens' injury could allow rookie wide receiver Jaelon darden, a fourth round draft pick from North Texas, to make his NFL debut.

Arians expressed optimism that Brown and backup inside linebacker/special teams captain Kevin Minter could be back next week when the Bucs travel down to Foxborough to face the New England Patriots in what is one of the most anticipated matchesups of the season.