NFL free agency hasn’t officially begun yet, but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers appear poised to land free agent offensive tackle Anthony Collins if he does not re-sign with the Cincinnati Bengals.
In addition to multiple reports linking Collins to the Bucs, a league source told Sports Talk Florida that Tampa Bay was, indeed, the favorite to land the former fourth-round pick out of Kansas, saying that it came down to a bidding war among teams vying for his services.
The Bucs are said to be offering between $6.5 million to $7 million, and have approximately $25 million in cap space, which is 11th-most in the league, according to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun.
Teams can’t officially sign free agents until Tuesday at 4 p.m., but teams were permitted to contact representatives during the league’s three-day legal tampering period which began Saturday.
Collins, 28, started seven of 15 games for the Bengals last season and has 25 starts in his six-year career.
His arrival in Tampa could mean the end for starting left tackle Donald Penn, who is scheduled to earn $8 million in 2014.