While Buccaneers running back Charles Sims wasn't necessarily thought of as a player who would steal many of Doug Martin's touches, the fact Tampa Bay selected him in the third round of the draft gave rise to the idea that he could give the team's offense a spark as a change-of-pace back who could catch passes out of the backfield.
If he does, though, it now won't happen until the latter part of the season.
That's because the Buccaneers announced on Friday that Sims would undergo ankle surgery on Saturday and that his recovery likely would take between 12-14 weeks.
Sims broke his ankle during Tuesday's practice, a few days after he totaled 45 yards of offense in Tampa Bay's preseason opener.
Coach Lovie Smith, who has compared Sims to Bears running back Matt Forte, liked what he had seen from Sims so far.
"I think you can tell, especially at skill positions, does a guy have it?" Smith said earlier this month, via the Tampa Bay Times. "Charles Sims, I would say, has it. He hasn't played a game and right now we're not live an awful lot. But you can see enough in him to like his future with us. Just talking about it, that's the last thing. He can carry the ball or he can catch the ball. Protections for any young back, that's the thing that they will have the most trouble with early on. But he's picked things up fairly well quickly."
As The SportsXchange's Rob Rang explained recently, he wouldn't have been surprised to see Sims wind up "emerging as an immediate complementary threat in this offense and eventually considered a steal for the new brain trust in Tampa."
For now, though, it would seem Sims would be a candidate for the IR list with a designation to return later this season.