According to Monday’s press release, the Buccaneers placed punter Josh Bidwell on injured reserve due to a hip injury, ending his season.
Tampa Bay confirmed that Bidwell will indeed need surgery on his hip. The good news for Bidwell is that the injury does not appear to be career threatening.
Prior to his injury, Bidwell appeared in 144 consecutive games and had not missed a start since 1999. For his career, Bidwell has punted 727 times for 31,085 yards with an average of 42.8.
Bidwell was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1999 as a member of the Green Bay Packers. He is the Bucs’ all time leader for punts (419), punting average (44.0), and punting yards (18,426). He has been with the team since 2004 after signing with the team as a free agent.
Dirk Johnson is expected to handle the punting duties after signing with the team last week. In his first preseason game, Johnson punted five times with an average of 39 yards and a long of 46.
After placing Bidwell on injured reserve, the Buccaneers used his roster spot to add WR Marcus Maxwell, a seventh round selection of the 49ers in the 2005 NFL Draft. Maxwell has also been a member of the Bengals and Ravens and appeared in nine career games His lone catch for five yards came as a member of the Bengals.
Prior to being drafted, Maxwell played for the University of Oregon, which coincidently was also Josh Bidwell’s alma mater.