Update (12:35 ET): Mike Evans will serve a one-game suspension
#Bucs WR Mike Evans is suspended 1 game, source said.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 19, 2022
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans and New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore got into it again on Sunday, and the latest NFL rumors suggest that Evans could face a suspension for his actions in the game. According to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, the league is currently reviewing the entire matter.
NFL Rumors: Mike Evans Facing Possible Suspension For Mashon Lattimore Fight
The Buccaneers and Saints have one of the most heated rivalries in the league, and that mutual disdain is best personified by the ever-present beef between Evans and Lattimore. Their latest heavyweight bout began early in the fourth quarter when a Tom Brady pass intended for Scotty Miller fell incomplete thanks to tight coverage by Marshon Lattimore. Following the play, Brady had something to say to Lattimore, and the cornerback responded by waving off the seven-time Super Bowl champion. This clearly upset Brady, and apparently prompted running back Leonard Fournette to shove Lattimore.
Evans, who had previously left the field of play, saw this interaction and charged into the mix. Shoving Lattimore to the ground, Evans’ actions escalated the situation and eventually led to a massive showdown between both teams as the benches cleared. When all was said and done, Evans and Lattimore were both ejected from the game.
Mike Evans absolutely laid out Marshon Lattimore.
Both were ejected. pic.twitter.com/CpfsEPmKu8
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) September 18, 2022
This isn’t the first time these two players have been at odds. Back in 2017, Lattimore and then-Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston had a similar interaction that resulted in Evans shoving Lattimore to the ground. The officials didn’t eject Evans for his actions, but he did receive a one-game suspension after the fact. Based on the historical precedence and the long history between these two players, it is likely that Evans will receive another one-game suspension.
What A Mike Evans Suspension Means For Tampa Bay
Mike Evans is one of the most important players on the Buccaneers, and a one-game suspension would have a significant impact on the team. Tampa Bay’s scheme is heavily reliant on wide receiver talent, and the Buccaneers don’t have much of that right now. Chris Godwin, Julio Jones, Russell Gage, and Breshad Perriman are all battling some type of injury. While Perriman and Gage were able to power through and play in Week 2, Godwin likely won’t be able to play in Week 3, and it’s anyone’s guess if Jones will be healthy enough to suit up.
There is never a good time for an entire depth chart to be ravaged by injuries, but it’s especially bad when the Green Bay Packers come to town. Both Tampa Bay and Green Bay are heavy favorites to win their respective divisions, and this game could have a significant impact on playoff seeding in January. Needless to say, it’s hard to beat Aaron Rodgers without an elite passing attack.
The good news for Tampa Bay is that they still have the talent to start 3-0, even without Evans. Tom Brady hasn’t played up to usual standards thus far in 2022, but he’s still an above-average quarterback. He was much better than his stat line in Week 2, as he was the victim of an absurd amount of drops. The offense should be able to keep up with Rodgers, and the defense has played at an elite level through the first two weeks of the season. Even without Evans, the Buccaneers should have a decent shot in Week 3.