Bucs' Smith out vs. Panthers with another concussion

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Clifton Smith sustained a concussion on the opening kickoff of Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers and won't return.

It marked Smith's second concussion against the Panthers this season. Dante Wesley hit Smith as he called for a fair catch on Oct. 18, earning Wesley a one-game suspension. Smith then missed the next game against the New England Patriots because of the injury.

Smith was injured Sunday when he tried to tackle Carolina's Geoff Schwartz. Smith was on the field for more than a minute before he left on his own power. The Bucs quickly announced that Smith wouldn't return.

Smith entered the game ranked third in the NFL with a 29.1 average on kickoff returns. He was 10th in the league with an average of 10.1 yards per punt return.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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