Buccaneers WR Mike Evans (hamstring) likely to play vs. Saints

Tom Brady is likely to have his No. 1 receiver for Week 1.

After being upgraded from doubtful to questionable on Saturday’s injury report, Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans (hamstring) is likely to play against the Saints barring any setback, sources tell NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport.

Evans may be on a pitch count, Rapoport adds, but there is now optimism for him to be on the field in New Orleans for the season opener.

Evans finished 2019 with 67 receptions for 1,157 yards and eight touchdowns in 13 games played.

The availability of Evans is a good sign for Brady, who looks to make a splash in his debut as the Bucs’ quarterback. While Evans only represents one half of Tampa Bay’s dynamic duo of wideouts, his presence alone may ensure some favorable matchups for teammate Chris Godwin. The same goes for the Bucs’ tight end trio of Rob Gronkowski, O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate, who will all be featured in coach Bruce Arians’ 12 personnel sets this season.

The Bucs will still have a tough match ahead against the Saints, who are the defending NFC South champs, but having Evans on the field will only help Brady & Co.’s cause for a takeover.

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