Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Minor Moves: Wednesday

Here are today’s minor transactions from around the NFL, with the latest moves added to the top of the list throughout the day:

  • Quarterback Kory Faulkner, waived Tuesday by the 49ers, cleared waivers and is now free to sign with any team, tweets Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. Guard Fou Fonoti cleared waivers as well and now reverts to SF’s injured reserve.
  • The Browns have signed offensive lineman Ryan Lee, the team announced today (via Twitter). By our count, Cleveland had three openings on its roster, so the club won’t need to waive anyone.
  • Wide receiver Gerrard Sheppard, who spent most of last season the Ravens’ practice squad, was claimed off waivers by the Packers today after being cut by Baltimore, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun. Green Bay had an open spot on its 90-man roster, so no corresponding move is necessary.
  • In order to make room for McDonough, whose signing is noted below, the Redskins have waived-injured former Hampton cornerback Courtney Bridget, Jay Gruden confirmed today (Twitter link via Zac Boyer of the Washington Times).

Earlier updates:

  • Defensive linemen Cody Larsen and Will Pericak have signed with the Broncos, the team announced today (link via the Denver Post). Both players’ NFL experience is limited to preseason action and time spent on practice squads. The moves increase Denver’s roster count to 89, leaving one additional opening.
  • With a couple defensive backs banged up in camp, the Buccaneers have added some depth by signing cornerback Kip Edwards, who went undrafted in 2013 and has spent time with the Browns, Bills, and Vikings (Twitter link via Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com). The club used the spot vacated by recently released guard Carl Nicks to fit Edwards onto the 90-man roster.
  • The Redskins have signed defensive tackle Jake McDonough, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun. So far, the move has been confirmed by McDonough’s agent, but not the team — when it becomes official, Washington should have to cut a player to make room.

Poll: Who Will Win The NFC South?

The NFC South was a two-team race in 2013, with the 12-4 Panthers ultimately eking out the division title over the 11-5 Saints. However, unlike in most of the NFL’s other divisions, the defending NFC South champions aren’t the frontrunners to take the crown again in 2014 — betting side Bovada.lv has New Orleans as the odds-on favorites to win the South.

The Saints certainly look good heading into the season, having added first-round wideout Brandin Cooks to an already explosive offense and signed star safety Jairus Byrd to fortify the secondary. But they aren’t a lock to win one of the league’s most intriguing divisions.

According to Bovada, the Panthers aren’t even the second-most likely club to win the South in 2014. That distinction goes to the Falcons, who won the division in 2012 before unexpectedly slipping to 4-12 last season. Having revamped their offensive and defensive lines this offseason – with rookie tackle Jake Matthews, guard Jon Asamoah, and defensive linemen Paul Soliai and Tyson Jackson among the new additions – the Falcons are poised to bounce back.

Another 2013 underperformer, the Buccaneers, shouldn’t be ruled out as a contender either. As our Zach Links detailed last night, Tampa Bay’s ’13 season was derailed by controversy surrounding then-coach Greg Schiano and then-quarterback Josh Freeman, but the club has made a number of interesting offseason moves, including signing defensive end Michael Johnson and drafting Texas A&M receiver Mike Evans. The Bucs’ success – or lack thereof – this coming season may hinge on Josh McCown‘s performance under center, since the roster is certainly loaded with plenty of talent at other positions.

And of course, last season’s division champs shouldn’t be overlooked. A candidate for regression, Carolina’s cap struggles forced the team to part ways with a few key contributors, including longtime Panther Steve Smith, and there are questions about whether Cam Newton will have enough weapons to utilize. But this is still a strong team, particularly on the defensive side of the ball, where few clubs have a scarier pass-rushing duo than Carolina’s Greg Hardy and Charles Johnson.

What do you think? Who wins the NFC South in 2014?

Previously:
Who will win the AFC North?
Who will win the AFC West?
Who will win the AFC South?
Who will win the AFC East?
Who will win the NFC North?
Who will win the NFC West?
Who will win the NFC East?

Offseason In Review: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Notable signings:

Notable losses:

Trades:

  • Acquired a 2015 fifth-round pick from the Ravens in exchange for Jeremy Zuttah.
  • Acquired a sixth-round pick (No. 185) from the Bills in exchange for Mike Williams.
  • Acquired a fifth-round pick (No. 149) from the Bills in exchange for a seventh-round pick (No. 221) and a 2015 fifth-round pick.

Draft picks:

  • Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M (1.7): Signed
  • Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington (2.38): Signed
  • Charles Sims, RB, West Virginia (3.69): Signed
  • Kadeem Edwards, G, Tennessee State (5.143): Signed
  • Kevin Pamphile, OT, Purdue (5.149): Signed
  • Robert Herron, WR, Wyoming (6.185): Signed

Other:

Things got weird in Tampa Bay last year. Real weird. Former Rutgers coach Greg Schiano kicked off the season with what many perceived as a campaign against his own starting quarterback. Josh Freeman wasn’t voted as a team captain for the first time since his 2009 rookie season, but when teammates huddled up to discuss the election process, they came away with the conclusion that it was rigged and Freeman rightfully should have had a C on his jersey, according to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio. Weeks later, word came out that Freeman had to enroll in the league’s drug program for abusing Adderall and the NFLPA filed a grievance on the matter for breach of confidentiality. There was speculation that Schiano was the one who stripped Freeman of his captaincy and the one who leaked news of the drug problem to the press. When you couple that with an 0-8 start that ended in a 4-12 record for 2013, the Bucs had no choice but to bounce the discipline-loving, cliched sound bite-giving coach. Now, the Bucs will be guided by former Bears coach Lovie Smith who is set to bring the Tampa 2 back to Tampa and, hopefully, foster a healthier environment in the locker room.NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Minicamp

After the Bucs demoted Freeman (and later cut him), rookie quarterback Mike Glennon was thrust into the starting role and performed about as well as you’d expect most rookie signal callers to perform. Glennon produced an cumulative -6.1 rating from Pro Football Focus, placing him 33rd amongst all eligible QBs in their rankings. Taking his spot on the depth chart will be free agent pickup Josh McCown, who ranked 9th in PFF’s QB rankings. The veteran journeyman started for the Bears in place of Jay Cutler last season after he was lost to injury and filled in admirably, The 35-year-old ended the 2013 season completing 66.8 of his passes for 1,829 yards with 13 touchdowns, one interception and a 109.0 passer rating, the third highest behind Peyton Manning and Nick Foles. In fact, McCown left such a strong impression in Chicago that many fans wondered why the Bears didn’t re-sign him rather than giving an expensive long-term deal to Cutler. Some might wonder if the veteran can replicate his play from last season, but he would appear to be a nice upgrade over the rising sophomore Glennon, who can still be groomed as the club’s QB of the future.

McCown will have the pleasure of throwing to three-time Pro Bowler Vincent Jackson and No. 7 overall pick Mike Evans. The Texas A&M product rocketed up draft charts across the NFL in the weeks leading up to the draft and firmly established himself as the best wide receiver in the class behind Clemson’s Sammy Watkins. In Evans, the Bucs are getting a big 6’5″ target who is hard to take down and can eke out extra yards after a catch that many WRs wouldn’t be able to. Evans doesn’t offer the blazing speed of Watkins or Odell Beckham Jr., the third WR to come off the board in the draft, but he offers serious upside in his own right and appears to be rather NFL-ready. Meanwhile, Mike Williams, who spent the first four years of his career with the Bucs, was shipped to the Bills for a sixth-round choice.

As if that wasn’t enough to help McCown in his first year with Tampa Bay, the Bucs also drafted Washington tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins in the second round and signed former Raiders and Giants tight end Brandon Myers to a two-year deal. Seferian-Jenkins, like many of the league’s top tight ends, comes from a basketball background and that shows with his high-end athleticism. The 6’5″ athlete has very strong agility and soft hands for a player of his size and is also a decent blocker. Heading into the draft, some teams were wary of the 21-year-old’s perceived character flaws thanks to a 2013 DUI arrest. However, the Bucs interviewed the youngster extensively and walked away without concern.

In March, left tackle Anthony Collins was brought aboard to help protect the starting backfield of McCown and Doug Martin. Collins got a five-year, $30MM deal ($9MM guaranteed) from Tampa Bay even though he never had an extended run as a starter during his six seasons with the Bengals. Still, in his 673 offensive snaps last season, Collins never recorded a negative grade in a game, according to PFF (subscription required). If he can bring that kind of production as a starter, then the Bucs will look pretty smart in the long run.

Also new to the Bucs’ starting o-line is former Packers center Evan Dietrich-Smith. Dietrich-Smith also doesn’t have a ton of starting experience, having started just nine games during his first three seasons in Green Bay before starting in all 16 games for the Packers in 2013. Still, PFF (subscription required) ranked him No. 8 out of 35 qualified centers and he graded particularly well as a pass blocker. Off the bench, the Bucs added guard Oniel Cousins and retained OG Jamon Meredith with a two-year deal. Jeremy Zuttah, a former Rutgers notable who was a holdover from the Schiano era, was sent to the Ravens for a fifth-round choice (fellow RU alums Brian Leonard and Tiquan Underwood were also released).

Tampa Bay’s biggest financial commitment of the offseason came on the other side of the ball when they inked defensive end Michael Johnson to a five-year contract worth $43.75MM with $24MM in guaranteed cash. The Bengals free agent was this year’s fifth-best free agent according to our own Luke Adams and graded out as one of the best 4-3 defensive ends last season in stopping the run. Johnson’s 3.5 sacks in 2013 pale in comparison to his 11.5 sacks from 2012, but he’s still a dominant force that should help disrupt opposing offenses. Along with with defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who was the statistical leader amongst DTs in stopping the run, the Bucs should have a fearsome defensive line to help anchor Smith’s defense. Former Seahawks defensive tackle Clinton McDonald was also brought aboard on a four-year, $12MM deal and he’s expected to sit behind McCoy and Akeem Spence on the depth chart.

The Bucs said goodbye to Darrelle Revis this offseason in order to get out from under his $16MM annual cap hit. While he’ll look to hold his position as one of the league’s top cornerbacks in New England, Tampa Bay brought in Alterraun Verner to take his place. Verner, widely regarded as the second-best free agent cornerback on the open market behind Aqib Talib (excluding Revis, of course, who did not become an FA until he was released by Tampa Bay), signed a rather team-friendly deal considering what he brings to the table. Verner isn’t a truly elite corner like Revis, but since entering the league in 2010, Verner has never placed outside the top 25 in Pro Football Focus’ cornerback rankings. Verner will help anchor a secondary that has some question marks, including starting strong safety Mark Barron. Barron missed most of the Bucs’ OTAs and minicamp with what was thought to be hamstring issue, but he actually underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in January.

The Bucs got a lot done over the offseason, but they’d still like to hammer out a new deal with McCoy and keep him in the fold for the long term. In the short-term, it’s a new era in Tampa Bay and while they might not look the part of Super Bowl contenders, it’s certainly a step up from where they were last season under their old regime.

Spotrac and Over The Cap were used in the creation of this post. Photo courtesy USA Today Sports Images.

Minor Moves: Monday

We’ll round up the day’s minor transactions from around the NFL right here, with additional moves listed at the top of the page throughout the afternoon and evening:

  • The Colts have waived WR Aaron Burks, tweets Craig Kelley of Colts.com.

Earlier updates:

  • Guard Cody White and receiver Alan Bonner have been placed on the Texans’ injured reserve list after being waived/injured, tweets Aaron Wilson of the National Football Post.
  • The Bills have removed linebacker Darrin Kitchens from their injured reserve list with an injury settlement, reports Wilson (Twitter link).
  • Rookie defensive lineman Kalonji Kashama has been waived by the Lions, according to Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com (via Twitter).
  • The Giants have replaced one offensive lineman with another, according to Jordan Raanan of NJ.com, tweeting that the team claimed Mark Asper off waivers from the Bills and dropped Demarcus Love.
  • The Browns have waived kicker Jake Rogers, tweets Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal.
  • The Broncos now have three open roster spots after waiving tackle Aslam Sterling with a left squad designation, per Jeff Legwold of ESPN.com (via Twitter).
  • In addition to their move noted below, the Dolphins have also signed offensive tackle Tony Hills and waived wideout Gerald Ford, the club confirmed today (via Twitter).
  • The Chiefs have signed South Alabama cornerback Damond Smith, the team announced today (via Twitter). By our count, Kansas City was already carrying 90 players, so a corresponding move figures to be made at some point today.
  • The Raiders have filled the open spot on the roster by signing safety Jeremy Deering, who also returned kicks at Rutgers, says Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter).
  • Former Buccaneers defensive back Anthony Gaitor has re-signed with the club, joining Michigan defensive tackle Jibreel Black as Tampa Bay’s new additions, tweets Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune. Per Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com (via Twitter), undrafted rookies Brendan Bigelow (RB) and Quintin Payton (WR) have been waived to make room for the incoming players.
  • The Browns have waived offensive lineman Chris Faulk, who was coming off a major ACL injury, according to Jeff Schudel of the News-Herald (via Twitter).
  • Offensive lineman Michael Philipp, who signed with the Dolphins two months ago, has been cut by the club, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun.

Sunday Roundup: Nelson, Robinson, Browns

Let’s look at some links from around the league as training camp rolls along and ruminations over hot-button issues like the color of Johnny Manziel‘s cleats consume far too much of everyone’s time:

  • Jets‘ rookie safety Calvin Pryor does have a concussion, tweets Brian Costello of The New York Post. We learned earlier this morning that Pryor, who suffered the injury Saturday, was absent from practice today.
  • Jordy Nelson‘s new deal might be a bargain for the Packers, writes Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com.
  • Saints‘ cornerback Patrick Robinson, who missed most of 2013 with an injury and who has seen Champ Bailey take most of the reps as the team’s No. 2 corner thus far, is flashing the ability that made him a first-round pick in 2010, writes Mike Triplett of ESPN.com.
  • Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com does not expect the Jaguars to make a play for a veteran receiver, adding that the team’s focus is in developing rookies Allen Robinson and Marqise Lee.
  • Newly-signed TE Ed Dickson has shown flashes of his impressive athletic ability in Panthers camp, writes Joseph Person of The Charlotte Observer. Dickson, who struggled with drops during his tenure with the Ravens, is looking for a fresh start in Carolina.
  • Safety Dashon Goldson, who underwent ankle surgery following the 2013 season, is being brought along slowly by the Buccaneers, writes Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com.
  • The Texans worked out former Raiders’ outside linebacker Eric Harper at the same time they auditioned Quentin Groves and Lawrence Sidbury, writes Aaron Wilson of The National Football Post. Houston ultimately signed Sidbury and Groves.
  • Texans‘ guard Cody White suffered a torn Achilles tendon during yesterday’s practice, tweets John McClain of The Houston Chronicle.
  • Although it seems unlikely that Johnny Manziel will beat out Brian Hoyer as the Browns‘ starting quarterback to open the season, Ben Volin of The Boston Globe believes that Cleveland’s schedule “sets up well” for Manziel to assume the starting role early in the season. The Browns have a bye in Week 4 and then a series of “easy” games against teams like the Titans, Jaguars, and Raiders.
  • Speaking of the Browns‘ quarterback dilemma, Lindsay Jones of USA Today Sports tweets that Hoyer will continue to take reps with the first-team offense through Tuesday’s practice, and then Cleveland’s coaching staff will reevaluate the team’s situation under center. Wednesday’s practice, then, may be a telling one.

NFC South Notes: Newton, Falcons, Bucs

Four paragraphs into an article about the Panthers’ Fan Fest, Charlotte Observer writer Joseph Person quotes Cam Newton, who admits his ankle isn’t fully healed yet: “I can’t stress enough that I’m not 100 percent yet. I’m treating it day in and day out.”

Here’s some more NFC South reading:

  • One of Newton’s newest blockers, 21-year-old rookie guard Trai Turner, is drawing early praise, according to the Observer’s Jonathan Jones, who quotes veteran center Ryan Kalil: “He’s so young and he’s doing such a good job.”
  • Falcons head coach Mike Smith was interviewed the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Orlando Ledbetter. Smith said there will be competition at the Falcons’ free safety spot, but veteran Dwight Lowery is the starter to begin training camp. As for the nickel back job, Robert McClain, Josh Wilson, Javier Arenas and Ricardo Allen are vying for reps.
  • Buccaneers new head man Lovie Smith isn’t deviating from the coaching philosophy and roster structure that sustained him for nine years in Chicago. He’s hand-picked his game managing quarterback in Josh McCown, writes Chris Urso of the Tampa Tribune: “The Bucs don’t need a Drew Brees. Lovie Smith would settle for a Trent Dilfer, a Brad Johnson. The man went to the Super Bowl with Rex Grossman at quarterback.” And on the defensive side of the ball, Smith has demanded players trim down in order to play fast and execute his Tampa 2 scheme, writes Alan Dell in the Bradenton Herald.
  • Jason Fitzgerald at OverTheCap.com gave his reaction to yesterday’s Carl Nicks news, saying, “The contract was a good example of the problems that can occur with the all cash salary cap model that is employed by Tampa Bay. Because all cash contracts contain no signing bonus it often leads to lower cash flows in the first year of the contract than awarded in more traditional NFL contracts. The players also receive no “dead money” protection in the contract. These factors lead to teams overpaying for talent and guaranteeing large portions of the contract. Nicks received a ridiculous $25 million in fully guaranteed salary upon signing, an unheard of total for a guard. $31 million of the contract was guaranteed for injury.” Ultimately, the Buccaneers payed Nicks $25MM for nine games of work.

Extra Points: McClain, Nicks, White, Johnson

Recently-acquired linebacker Rolando McClain is expected to make his team debut at the Cowboys walkthrough on Saturday. McClain was tardy because he was in court in Alabama, where he was found guilty of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct stemming from an April 2013 incident (via John Breech of CBSSports.com). The 25-year-old has been sentenced to 18 days in jail, but his lawyers have filed an appeal.

According to ESPNDallas.com’s Todd Archer, the Cowboys were aware of the trial when they acquired the 25-year-old from the Ravens earlier this month. Even with a potential jail sentence, the team’s executive vice president didn’t sound overly concerned.

“We’ve got to learn a little more about it, but I don’t think it’s anything that’s going to keep him from playing,” Stephen Jones said.

“I had a great visit with (Ravens general manager) Ozzie (Newsome), very comfortable with what he’s been through. That’s why we decided to make the decision we did.”

Let’s look at some assorted notes on this Friday evening…

  • Following the release of guard Carl Nicks, ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas writes that the Buccaneers are in rough shape at the position. The team currently has Patrick Omameh, Oniel CousinsJamon Meredith and rookie Kadeem Edwards competing for the starting left guard gig and Yasinskas guesses that the team will be monitoring the waiver wire for additional depth.
  • Jason Fitzgerald of Over The Cap points out (via Twitter) that Nicks will count $2.357MM against the Buccaneers cap in 2014 and $4.714MM in 2015.
  • The Falcons extended wideout Roddy White yesterday and the veteran reiterated that he always wanted to stay in Atlanta. “There is where I always wanted to be,” White said (via The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). “You hardly ever see players nowadays being with a team this long, so it was important to me to get the deal done. When we got it done, I was so happy that I’m going to be here for the next couple of years. Hopefully we can go out there and win a Super Bowl.”
  • The Falcons waived wideout Darius Johnson earlier today, and ESPN.com’s Vaughn McClure tweets that the player had “had enough” with football and intends on coaching at his alma mater, SMU.

Carl Nicks, Buccaneers Part Ways

The Buccaneers and veteran offensive lineman Carl Nicks have agreed to “mutually part ways,” confirms Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com (via Twitter). Jay Glazer of FOX Sports first reported the news, tweeting that the two sides reached an agreement on an “amicable settlement.”

“I’d like to thank the Buccaneers organization for working with me as I have attempted to get myself back on the football field,” Nicks said on a statement. “However, after careful consideration, I have made the decision to step away from the game. This was by no means an easy decision, but I believe that is what is bet for me and my family as well as the Buccaneers.”

While Nicks’ comments don’t suggest he’s officially retiring quite yet, it sounds like health issues will at least force him to sit out the 2014 season. The big guard has been hampered by foot and toe issues over the last two years, and was limited to seven games in 2012 and just two in 2013.

Those health issues arose after the Bucs signed Nicks to a five-year, $47.5MM in 2012, snatching him away from the Saints in free agency. The deal included $25MM in guaranteed money, so perhaps part of the “amicable settlement” the two sides agreed to involved Nicks agreeing to repay some of that money, since he only appeared in nine games for the club. As Brian McIntyre observes (via Twitter), $6MM of Nicks’ $7MM base salary for this season was guaranteed for injury, so the settlement may also have been related to that figure.

With Nicks no longer in the picture, Jamon Meredith, Patrick Omameh, and Oniel Cousins are among the candidates to assume the starting left guard job for the coming season, though at least one of that group figures to start at the other guard spot.

Extra Points: Giants, Davis, Bucs, Clabo

Giants linebackers coach Jim Herrmann believes the team may have stumbled on a true gem with fifth-round pick Devon Kennard, writes Howie Kussay of the New York Post. “I liked him on film, obviously our college scouting liked him on film,” Herrmann said. “He played at USC and he played under four different coordinators, and played four different positions, so I think he kind of got lost in the college shuffle a little bit there.” More from around the NFL..

  • Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told reporters, including Charean Williams of the Star-Telegram (on Twitter), that a lot of the team’s “dramatic” offseason decisions freed up money that the club can use to hammer out extensions with Tyron Smith and Dez Bryant. It’s likely that Jones is referring to the situation with Kyle Orton that ended with his release earlier this month
  • According to a report from WUSA 9, former Redskins tight end Fred Davis is wanted by D.C. police for a domestic violence incident. It’s just the latest in a string of troubles for the former NFL notable who was suspended indefinitely for substance abuse and charged with a DUI over the winter.
  • Bucs GM Jason Licht says he will keep five running backs on the roster if they can help win games, tweets Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. Licht added that the team is excited about Bobby Rainey. There has been speculation that the 26-year-old, who was picked up off waivers in October of last year, was on the bubble heading into the season.
  • After Tyson Clabo was signed by the Texans, the best available right tackles in the NFL are David Stewart, Eric Winston, Tony Pashos, Jonathan Scott, Dennis Roland, and Jeremy Trueblood, opines Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
  • Bears GM Phil Emery was highly complimentary of new backup quarterback Jimmy Clausen, according to Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune (on Twitter). “That’s as good of a quarterback workout we’ve seen since I’ve been here,” the GM said of the former Notre Dame QB’s June tryout.
  • The Bears put veteran tight end Travis Beckum and journeyman offensive lineman Thomas Austin through tryouts Wednesday, a source told Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Beckum, 27, has been looking to find a home in the league after suffering a torn ACL in the Giants in their Super Bowl XLVI victory following the 2011 season. Austin has played eight games in the NFL with one start, spending time with the Colts last season. Unfortunately for both men, Biggs gets the sense that it’s unlikely either will get contract offers from Chicago.
  • Scott Brown of ESPN.com (on Twitter) is glad to see center Fernando Velasco catch on with the Panthers after the way he stepped up for the Steelers last season in the absence of Maurkice Pouncey. The 29-year-old was graded as Pittsburgh’s fourth-best lineman by Pro Football Focus (subscription required) in 2013.
  • The deal for new Lions wide receiver Reese Wiggins is a minimum salary deal for three years with nothing guaranteed and no bonuses, according to Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com (on Twitter).

Minor Moves: Saints, Rams, Browns, Bills

The NFL’s transactions wire is picking up as we approach the end of July, with notable players like Joel Dreessen and Larry English involved in roster moves today. Several teams have finalized a series of more under-the-radar moves as well, which we’ll round up right here:

  • The Buccaneers have signed linebacker Jeremy Grable and offensive tackle J.B. Shugarts, according to Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune (on Twitter). To help make room for the duo, the Bucs released cornerback D.J. Moore.
  • Former Ravens linebacker Adrian Hamilton has signed with the Chargers, according to Michael Gehlken of U-T San Diego (on Twitter).
  • The Saints have signed nose tackle Tyrone Ezell and linebacker Marcus Thompson, clearing roster spots for the new additions by cutting nose tackle Moses McCray and waiving outside linebacker Cheta Ozougwu with a failed physical designation. The team has the details on its newest signees in a press release.
  • The Rams completed a series of roster moves today, signing four players – linebacker Pat Schiller, linebacker Lawrence Wilson, offensive tackle D.J. Morrell, and offensive tackle R.J. Dill – and cutting four others — offensive lineman Abasi Salimu, wideout Dionte Spencer, linebacker Caleb McSurdy, and linebacker Tavarius Wilson (Twitter links via Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com).
  • A day after being cut by the Chargers, center Nick McDonald has been claimed off waivers by the Browns, tweets Brian McIntyre. Cleveland had an opening on its 90-man roster, so no corresponding move is necessary to make room for the offensive lineman.
  • One linebacker has been swapped for another in Buffalo, where the Bills signed Western Kentucky product Xavius Boyd to a contract after having waived-injured Darrin Kitchens, who is dealing with a lower body injury (Twitter links via Mike Rodak of ESPN.com).
  • The Texans have waived fullback Brad Smelley and defensive end Tim Jackson, and also signed tight end Chris Coyle, according to Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter links). As ESPN.com’s Adam Caplan tweets, Jackson received the “failure to disclose physical condition” designation when he was cut.
  • That “failure to disclose physical condition” designation is rarely used, but linebacker Billy Boyko also received it when he was waived by the Panthers, according to Caplan (Twitter link).
  • Caplan also tweets that former Broncos safety Eric Hagg has officially been placed on the team’s reserve/retired list. We heard yesterday that Hagg had decided to retire.