Graham, who has a sprained right ankle, did not fly with the team when it left New Orleans for Tampa Saturday.
Vilma, who was suspended for the season for his role in the bounty scandal by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell in May, received a reprieve the week before the Saints' opener when a three-man appeals board vacated his suspension. New Orleans placed him on the physically unable to perform list while he rehabilitated an injured knee.
Goodell re-suspended Vilma last week, but he is eligible to play this Sunday and next week until his appeal is heard on Oct. 30. He practiced Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Vilma has played in 113 career games with 111 starts, 939 tackles, 38 passes defensed, 11 forced fumbles, 11 interceptions, 10 fumble recoveries and 9.5 sacks. He has been a spiritual leader of the Saints defense since arriving in 2008, but his play tailed off last season due to his knee problems. He missed five games and finished with 54 tackles after making more than 100 stops in his first three years in New Orleans.
Graham's loss may offset Vilma's return. The Saints offense will miss his production. Graham caught 99 passes for 1,310 yards and 11 TDs a year ago, has 25 receptions for 252 yards this season. He was listed as doubtful on Friday's injury report. The only other tight ends on the active roster are David Thomas (two catches) and Daniel Graham (zero catches).
To make room for Vilma, the Saints released veteran WR Greg Camarillo, who caught four passes on Oct. 7 in New Orleans' last game against San Diego. Camarillo had filled in for Lance Moore, who sat out that game with a hamstring injury but will play against Tampa Bay.
Follow Saints reporter Guerry Smith on twitter @CBSSaints.