NFL Team Battles Potentially Deadly Enemy Off Field

Three players on Tampa Bay Buccaneers diagnosed with dangerous MRSA infection.
1:46 | 10/13/13

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Transcript for NFL Team Battles Potentially Deadly Enemy Off Field
In the meantime, on this sunday of football, to a medical mystery in the nfl tonight. One team battling a to tpotentially deadly enemy off the field. Three members of the tampa bay buccaneers diagnosed with a deadly infection, mrsa. Here tonight, abc's matt gutman. Reporter: Tampa bay buccaneers faced a more formidable foe than the philadelphia eagles today. Mrsa, a sometimes deadly staph infection, stalking the team's locker room. Tackling three of the teams players. Offensive guard carl nix and place kicker lawrence tynes. Knocking them out of sunday's game. But rookie cornerback jonathan banks was just cleared this weekend to play today. Team officials believe the players did not originally contract the infection in the team locker room, but elsewhere. Player health and safety is of the utmost importance. It's been something that we've worked very strenuously with. A lot of policies and procedures that we've put in place when we had the first two cases. Reporter: Mrsa is a deadly infection that often invades the body through an open cut or wound. It can spread within 24 to 48 hours and infect vital organs. Participants in contact sports of all kinds, including the nfl, should take mrsa inf infection seriously, because it can affect their players with relatively speaking minor skin infections. But they can become life threatening and cause disabilities. Reporter: A texas department of health study found the infection rate among football players 16 times higher than the national average. And over the past decade, 32 teams have been hit by the virus. As for the bucs, they lost to the eagles, and that mrsa outbreak only compounds the misery of a winless season. Matt gutman, abc news, miami. Matt, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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