Tristan Wirfs injury update: Buccaneers will ‘be working on that ankle non-stop’, says Bruce Arians

The Buccaneers won their wild card playoff game 31-15 against the Eagles, but lost one of their best offensive players during the game.

Offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs went down on the team’s first drive with an ankle injury. He limped off the field and had to be helped to the locker room. He returned to the game, but was eventually replaced by Josh Wells and did not play in the second half.

Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians provided an update on Wirfs during his postgame press conference.

“He has a sprained ankle,” Arians said, before saying how long Wirfs might be out: “We’ll see.”

The Buccaneers’ offense performed quite well without Wirfs in the lineup. After all, they had 349 yards and 31 points and he missed most of the action.

However, the Eagles were able to put a lot of pressure on Tom Brady and sacked him four times. That tied the Buccaneers for the most sacks allowed this season, matching the offense Brady suffered in a 9-0 loss against the Saints in Week 15.

The Bucs had allowed just 22 sacks before Sunday’s game, the fewest in the NFL. However, the team allowed more than three sacks in four regular season games and posted a 1-3 record in those contests. Their only victory came by two points over the Patriots, who came close to a go-ahead field goal with less than a minute left.

INJURY UPDATE: Leonard Fournette

Avoiding pressure has a huge impact on the Bucs’ ability to win. Wirfs allowed just two sacks in the regular season while playing in total 764 of Tampa Bay’s pass-blocking plays, so it’s clear he’s a big part of keeping Brady clean.

That’s why Arians hopes Wirfs can play in the divisional round of the playoffs.

“Hopefully we can keep our offensive line intact because I think they are the best in football, especially Tristan,” Arians said. “They’ll be working on that ankle nonstop.”