Mini-Camp Tryout Leads to Contract for Derek Hagan

Head  Coach Greg Schiano said on Wednesday that his players had put together two strong days of mini-camp practice, and that was apparently especially true of veteran WR Derek Hagan.

Those two practices proved to be the entirety of the mini-camp, as Schiano gave his players a break on Thursday and took them to a private screening of the upcoming Brad Pitt blockbuster World War Z.  Thus, Wednesday proved to be the end of the Bucs’ offseason work, but it was just the beginning for Hagan. Continue reading

From Bulls to Bucs…With a Few Stops in Between

After completing his junior season at the University of South Florida in 2009, Carlton Mitchell declared early for the 2010 NFL Draft, was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the sixth round and went on to make the 53-man roster to start the season.  In a happy coincidence, the Browns’ regular-season opener that year was against the Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium…where Mitchell had played his home games as a wide receiver for the USF Bulls.

Unfortunately, however, Mitchell was named one of the Browns’ eight game-day inactives for that Week One matchup with the Bucs, so he didn’t get a chance to suit up in front of the home crowd.  Now, maybe, he’ll get another chance. Continue reading

Temple’s Matt Brown Gets Shot at NFL with Bucs

Matt Brown may be able to thank a passport snafu for his first crack at the National Football League.

As told by Philly.com, the former Temple running back was scheduled to fly to Saskatchewan on Tuesday to sign with the Roughriders of the Canadian Football League, but a problem with his passport kept him off the plane.  That in turn delayed his official signing and meant he was still available to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when they called Wednesday morning.  He was on a plane to Tampa hours later, returning to the spot where he had participated in a rookie mini-camp on a tryout contract a few weeks earlier. Continue reading

Receiver Swap Gives Crump an Opportunity

Terriun Crump came to the Buccaneers’ rookie mini-camp three weeks ago on a tryout contract, and left without anything more permanent.  Whether he knew it or not, however, he had done enough to keep himself on the Bucs’ radar.

That paid off on Wednesday when the team decided to tweak the receiver position on its 90-man offseason roster, and Crump got a phone call.  With the Bucs choosing to waive Mount Union rookie Chris Denton, who had found a contract waiting for him after the rookie camp, it was the former Western Illinois player who got another shot at the NFL. Continue reading

Ronde Barber: By The Numbers

At his retirement press conference on Thursday, future Hall of Famer Ronde Barber admitted that he only recently got a better grip on some of the amazing career numbers he posted during 16 years in the NFL.  That is, he knew he had played more games than the vast majority of players, for instance, but he didn’t know the exact number was 243, et cetera.

Most of those numbers have been part of the public discussion for years now.  As he racked up the interceptions and sacks through the years, he frequently became members in new clubs, until the point where he became the only man in the 40-interception/25-sack club.  Listing all of his accomplishments takes a while, but finding a new angle on Ronde’s numbers isn’t easy to do anymore.

That said, the Captain’s Blog has a new one for you, and it speaks to Barber’s incredible durability and career longevity. Continue reading

Three Released as Bucs Meet Roster Limit

NFL teams are allowed a maximum of 90 players on the roster during the offseason, and Monday’s addition of 13 undrafted free agents put the Buccaneers over the limit.  Or, at least it did when those 13 young men arrived in Tampa on Thursday and officially put pen to paper.

That necessitated some additional roster moves by the Buccaneers, which was taken care of on Thursday afternoon.  The Bucs released the following three players:

  • G Derek Hardman
  • DT Corvey Irvin
  • CB James Rogers

In addition, TE Drake Dunsmore and K Nate Kaeding have elected to retire.

What They’re Saying About the Revis Trade

The blockbuster deal that sent All-Pro CB Darrelle Revis from the Jets to the Buccaneers on Sunday was obviously not a simple transaction to complete.  It came down, essentially, to the 11th hour, not surprising given that it included two of most coveted of NFL assets: a shutdown cornerback and a first-round draft pick.

But G.M.’s Mark Dominik and John Idzik got it done, and one assumes that wouldn’t have happened if each side hadn’t been at least somewhat satisfied with its haul in the bargain.  Dominik called it a “rare and unique” opportunity for the Buccaneers to acquire “the premier defensive player in the league.”  Meanwhile, Idzik laid out the Jets’ reasoning as to why the trade was the “best thing to do for really all concerned,” with his squad receiving “very valuable compensation.” Continue reading

Welcome to Tampa! Twitter Response to Revis Trade

Darrelle Revis is going to get a warm reception from his new Tampa Bay teammates the first time he steps into the locker room at One Buccaneer Place.  He already got one on Twitter.

It is probably an understatement to say that Buccaneer players are thrilled with the addition of one of the NFL’s true superstars to their roster.  Hot on the heels of the Dashon Goldson signing, and with several prime picks in the 2013 draft still to be spent next week, the Bucs can legitimately believe that their playoff chances got a whole lot better on Sunday afternoon.

Not surprisingly, some of those excited Bucs took to everyone’s favorite social media platform on Sunday to react to the Revis trade, and to welcome their new teammate to the fold.  They weren’t alone in being drawn to the topic: At one point, Revis was one of the top trending Twitter topics in the world.  Pro Bowl DT Gerald McCoy, who likely has visions of coverage sacks dancing in his head, was one of the first to reach out to Revis, and other players around the league quickly reacted, as well.

NFL.com has compiled a short list of some of those reaction tweets. Check it out.

Bucs Add Rookie Safety Saenz

On Wednesday morning, the Buccaneers announced the signing of S Nick Saenz to their practice squad.  The team had an open spot on that eight-man crew since promoting DE Markus White to the active roster last Saturday.

Saenz, who played his college ball at Houston, went north to make his initial entry into the NFL, signing as an undrafted free agent with the Bills in May.  He was released by Buffalo during the final roster cuts after recording 10 tackles and one forced fumble during the preseason, and later spent several weeks in October with the Omaha Nighthawks of the UFL.

The 6-1, 190-pound Saenz played in 52 games for the Cougars, racking up 248 tackles, five interceptions, 17 passes defensed and three forced fumbles.  He capped his collegiate career with a two-interception outing in the 2012 TicketCity Bowl, helping Houston defeat Penn State, 30-14.  Saenz then ran an impressive 4.46 in the 40-yard dash at the Cougars’ Pro Day in March, helping to earn him the tryout in Buffalo.

Though there is just one week – and three practices – left in the Buccaneers’ 2012 season, Saenz signing isn’t necessarily a brief commitment for the young player or the team.  All NFL practice squad players automatically become free agents as soon as their teams’ seasons are over, whether that be this coming Monday or later in the playoffs.  However, it is not uncommon for the specific players who end a season on a team’s practice squad to quickly re-sign with that same team for the next offseason, agreeing to what is commonly called a “futures” contract that takes effect in March.

For instance, early this past January the Buccaneers re-signed five players that had finished 2011 on their practice squad, including TE Collin Franklin and QB Brett Ratliff.  Days after the end of the 2010 season, all eight players that ended that campaign on the practice squad – including DE E.J. Wilson and WR Ed Gant – promptly re-signed with the Bucs.