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Carl Nicks still not ready to go, aiming for start of training camp

Carl Nicks

FILE - In this July 29, 2013, file photo, Tampa Bay Buccaneers guard Carl Nicks takes off his helmet during NFL football training camp in Tampa, Fla. The Buccaneers said Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, that Carl Nicks and Lawrence Tynes are being treated for MRSA infections. MRSA is a staph infection that is resistant to some antibiotics. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara, File)


Two years into the five-year, $47.5 million contract he signed with Tampa Bay in 2012, Carl Nicks has played in just nine games as a Buccaneer, thanks to a toe injury and subsequent surgery that later led to a staph infection. And Nicks is still not healthy enough to go as the Bucs begin their offseason program.

Nicks told Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times that he still has pain and nerve damage in his foot. That pain is keeping him from participating in offseason work.

The good news is that Nicks does anticipate being ready to go for the start of training camp in three months. He says he fully expects to be able to play this season.

Now the question is how well he’ll be able to play. Before Nicks’s health problems, he was one of the best guards in the NFL, and he’s still only 28 years old. Getting him back on the field at 100 percent would go a long way toward rebuilding a moribund Tampa Bay offense.