The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have promoted center Ben Gottschalk and defensive end Ryan Russell to the 53-man roster ahead of Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears, the team announced today.

That’s probably bad news for center Joe Hawley, who’s struggling with a knee injury. The Bucs will also be without starting left guard Kevin Pamphile due to a concussion, meaning they’ll likely be starting two new players along the interior offensive line. One of them will be Caleb Benenoch, a fifth-round rookie who has yet to play for any significant amount of time, and the other veteran Evan Smith.

Why the Bucs promoted Russell is a bit of a mystery, though. The Bucs did lose Howard Jones to injured reserve, but he wasn’t seeing a lot of playing time anyway. Russell’s a really big defensive end: 6’5”, 275 lbs., a hybrid player like William Gholston rather than a fast pass-rush specialist like Jones. He was a fifth-round pick for the Dallas Cowboys in 2015, spent his first season on injured reserve, and didn’t make the team this year. We’ll see if he plays tomorrow.


Article first appeared on www.bucsnation.com