Just when it looked like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had made it through a preseason without anything crazy (like firing a coordinator) happening, we’ve got some developments out of One Buccaneer Place that are a little out of the ordinary.
It’s not quite as chaotic as the firing of offensive coordinator Jeff Jagodzinski just before last season. But, still, the Bucs just unloaded the punter they drafted (Brent Bowden) and released receiver Reggie Brown, who they once thought enough of to make a trade for him with five years left on his contract.
To replace Bowden, the Bucs signed Chris Bryan. He’s the guy who spent four years playing in the Australian Football League before going to Green Bay this offseason. Although Bryan averaged 42 yards a punt in the preseason, the Packers let him go.
The release of Brown was a bit more surprising. Although the Bucs were carrying seven receivers and it was obvious someone had to go, I didn’t think it would be Brown. As recently as a few weeks ago, team officials were talking about him being a possible starter opposite Mike Williams. That job now could go to Arrelious Benn or Sammie Stroughter.
To fill Brown’s roster spot, the Bucs signed running back LeGarrette Blount. You might recognize the name. He’s the former Oregon running back who gained notoriety after punching an opponent and confronting fans at the end of a 2009 game against Boise State. Blount was suspended for the rest of the season. The suspension was later reduced and he played in a December game against Oregon State and in the Rose Bowl.
The Bucs have been pretty vocal about character recently, and they’ve prided themselves on having a controversy-free preseason. Well, preseason is over and, even though Blount served his suspension and made apologies, his mere presence is going to create a media stir for at least a few days.
Blount wasn’t drafted and spent this preseason with the Titans before being released.