Earlier this week, Buccaneers GM Jason Licht said he planned to bring in competition for Matt Gay. The Bucs are doing so via the waiver wire, claiming recently cut Panthers kicker Elliott Fry, per Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter).
Fry has not yet kicked in a regular-season game. He spent four years as South Carolina’s kicker, entering the NFL as a UDFA in 2018. The Bucs will be his fourth NFL team.
Fry, 25, kicked in the short-lived Alliance of American Football then caught on with the Bears and Ravens in 2019. He then participated in several workouts but did not land a deal. The Panthers signed him to a reserve/futures contract. At South Carolina, he made 66 of 88 field goals. The former walk-on earned second-team All-SEC acclaim in 2014.
Tampa Bay has not enjoyed two straight seasons of kicker continuity since Connor Barth served in this capacity from 2009-12. The Bucs drafted Roberto Aguayo in Round 2 in 2016, but after that investment bombed, the team used multiple kickers in 2017 and ’18. Last season, Gay missed eight field goals and five extra points.