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Da'Quan Bowers injury: Bucs DE will return to practice Wednesday

Tampa Bay defensive end Da'Quan Bowers is expected to return to practice on Wednesday after opening the season on the physically unable to perform list.

Al Messerschmidt - Getty Images

After beginning the season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Da'Quan Bowers will resume practicing with the team on Wednesday.

Bowers has been out with a torn Achilles' tendon, which he suffered in May during the team's offseason training program. He opened the season on the PUP list, forcing him to miss the first six games. He was eligible to be activated on Monday and return to practice this week.

Injury issues caused Bowers to slide into the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft, but he played in all 16 games during his rookie season, including six starts. Bowers had 1.5 sacks and 25 tackles as a rookie and could be a big boost to a Tampa Bay defensive line, which is already without Adrian Clayborn due to a knee injury.

While Bowers is expected to return to practice this week, it is still unknown when he will play in his first game of the season. Achilles injuries can take as long as a year to fully heal, so the Buccaneers may choose to ease Bowers back into action.

Tampa Bay hosts the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

Photographs by, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.