The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have made their first round of cuts in advance of Tuesday’s deadline. The following 12 players have been released from the team’s 90-man roster, with three more that still need to be cut to meet the mandated 75-player roster requirement:
LS Jeremy Cain
DT Euclid Cummings
OL Jace Daniels
WR Skye Dawson
OL Jason Foster
DE Ryne Giddins
G R.J. Mattes
WR Eric Page
WR Tommy Streeter
DE Chaz Sutton
QB Alex Tanney
FB Ian Thompson
Among the most notable of the cuts was Eric Page, who was the team’s kick and punt returner last year. A number of other players have stepped in to that role, including rookie UDFA Solomon Patton, who got starting reps this past weekend in Buffalo. The team is still evaluating its returner situation.
“We’ve just decided on the 75 right now,” head coach Lovie Smith said to reporters Sunday. “There’s still more evaluation to be made through practices this week and of course through the game. Solomon didn’t hurt himself or anything like that. Every time we’ve given him the opportunity, we feel he’s stepped up to the plate.”
The team also seems to have its long snapper situation solidified with Jeremy Cain’s departure, which leaves Andrew DePaola as the lone snapper on the team.
“We’ve evaluated both players throughout. We’ve given them the same amount of reps.” said Smith. “Andrew may be a little bit better in coverage, but both guys did a good job. Jeremy Cain played in the league a long time as a snapper. He’s a good football player. We just feel like where we are right now, that this gives us our best option.”
Versatile offensive lineman Jace Daniels was also released. He had gotten in some work in practice with the first-team offense earlier on this preseason. Skye Dawson and Tommy Streeter also had flashes in camp, but their departures are a clear reflection of a deep pool of receivers.
“It’s always tough when you’ve been with a group of men, most of them through the offseason and of course through training camp, but eventually roster has to get down to 53 with 10 practice squad guys, so that’s just part of the business,” said Smith.
All 32 teams have until 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, August 26 to get their rosters down from 90 to 75. Final cuts must be made by Saturday, August 30, two days after the Bucs play their final preseason game.