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Bucs hold off on allowing Winston to test injured shoulder
By FRED GOODALL
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Jameis Winston says his injured right shoulder is "getting better every single day," however the Tampa Bay quarterback still isn't throwing in practice.
The Buccaneers decided against the third-year pro testing his arm Thursday, saying Winston instead will work with the first-team offense on Friday.
"We made a decision to hold him another day from throwing. He did everything else," coach Dirk Koetter said. "I fully expect that Jameis takes all the snaps (Friday)."
Asked if that's an indication Winston could be on track to start Sunday's game at Buffalo, Koetter smiled.
"You guys will get an injury report," the coach said, "and you can draw your own conclusion."
Winston, who has a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder, was listed as "limited" in practice for the second straight day.
Teams typically don't declare a player's status for an upcoming game until Friday.
Earlier in the week, Koetter said Winston is day to day and that a decision on whether he plays would be based, in part, on whether the quarterback feels he is able to throw with enough velocity.
Winston said before practice Thursday that he took "mental reps" on Wednesday and that he had no idea when a decision will be made on his availability for Sunday.
In the meantime, backup Ryan Fitzpatrick is preparing to face the Bills, one of seven teams he's played for during a 13-year career.
"When they let me go, I'm ready," Winston said, adding that the long-term health of his shoulder is the primary concern.
"It's not really about the passes and making the throws. It's the pain," he said. "This is a long season. That's the biggest thing, it's a long season."
Winston was injured during Tampa Bay's opening possession at Arizona last week. He returned for two more series before being replaced by Fitzpatrick.
The 23-year-old has made 37 consecutive starts to begin his career.
Winston said whether he plays will be a "joint decision," though ultimately the team would have final say.
"Right now, mental reps, getting my shoulder right, treatment, treatment, treatment is what I'm focusing on," Winston said. "And when Sunday comes, we all will know what'll happen."
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Updated October 19, 2017