Bucs make some tough cuts, changing offensive look (UPDATE)
TAMPA, FL – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have made their cuts to get down to the 53-man roster limit for the 2021 season. Notable cuts on offense include Tight End Tanner Hudson and QB Ryan Griffin.
Griffin has been on the Bucs QB roster since 2015 as a reserve. He played in two games for the team in 2019. A former Tulane player, Griffin was picked up by the New Orleans Saints in 2013 as a non-draft pick.
The drafting of Florida QB Kyle Trask as well as having Tom Brady and Blaine Gabbert has made Griffin the odd man out. According to Rick Stroud, Griffin could return to the practice squad. There’s no guarantee though, and it may not be an immediate move.
Another notable release was Hudson, who was a scrappy feisty fan favorite in the preseason. He weaknesses in blocking and catching, kind of crucial for a tight end, during the regular season made him expendable.
Now, with it looking likely that the Buccaneers will only keep three tight ends on their roster, it looks like the offensive identity in Tampa is starting to shift.
The high quality of the Bucs wide receiver corps makes a shift to having more sets with 3 wide receivers in the field makes more sense than three tight ends. It give the better players more time to be on the field.
Sources say that the Bucs are also working to restructure the contract to wide receiver Mike Evans, in hopes to create more cap room.
Evans, 28, has three years left on a five-year, $82.5 million extension. He is due $12.25 million in base salary, which the Bucs can convert to a signing bonus to prorate the money against the cap.
Hudson and Auclair already didn’t see the field much last season, even with four tight ends on the roster, but the opportunity to keep seven receivers and move forward with a more pass-focused attack could be too much for the Bucs to overlook.
CB Antonio Hamilton was another surprise cut for the Bucs. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Hamilton is one of the players that Tampa intends to move. Tampa needed a veteran corner to serve a special teams role to replace Ryan Smith, and Hamilton has the experience to excel in this area.
A possible reason for Hamilton’s cut seems to be the emergence of Dee Delaney. He has been a consistent force with the Buccaneers, and he may be on the verge of making his first active NFL roster. From good defense in coverage to great plays on special teams, Delaney has been the obvious choice as a piece for the roster, like Hamilton, and his cut has people scratching their heads.
The Bucs announced they waived Wilcox, offensive tackle Jake Benzinger, receiver Cyril Grayson, safety Javon Hagan, outside linebacker Ladarius Hamilton, offensive guard Jonathan Hubbard, tight end Tanner Hudson, receiver Travis Jonsen, cornerback Herb Miller, tight end Codey McElroy, outside linebacker Elijah Ponder, defensive lineman Benning Potoa’e, defensive lineman Kobe Smith and offensive lineman Brandon Walton.
They released tight end Jerell Adams, quarterback Ryan Griffin, cornerback Antonio Hamilton, linebacker Joe Jones, defensive lineman Jeremiah Ledbetter, receiver Jaydon Mickens and running back C.J. Prosise.
They waived/injured offensive tackle Brad Seaton.
They placed receiver Justin Watson on the reserve/physically unable to perform list.