As the Buccaneers prepare for final cuts and to finalize their 53-man roster, some tough decisions still remain at key positions on their team.
Wide receiver and running back are two positions where the Bucs have decent depth, but the decisions on both of those decisions revolves around 4th, 5th, and 6th stringers. When looking at other positions, the final decision on the starters will ultimately reflect which players get released.
Predictably, offensive line has been a position of concern for the Bucs through the preseason. While Gosder Cherilus has not started a game yet at right tackle, his impending move into the starting lineup could lead to players like Reid Fragel and Garrett Gilkey facing the chopping block. Unfortunately for the Bucs, they've faced the obstacle of playing numerous different offensive linemen in their starting lineup this preseason.
“In an ideal world, you would like to have all five guys together through training camp, through the preseason," Lovie Smith said. "I really judge it more on getting in position and looking at a lot of different combinations in the preseason, but it’s about the regular season. To me, I would be disappointed if we are having to rotate guys once the regular season starts, but right now we’re still on pace."
Defensive line is also a position where tough decisions may need to be made. Larry English and Lawrence Sidbury could be fighting for the same roster spot. There's also the possibility of the Bucs grabbing a pass rush off the waiver wire, which could lead to both players being released.
At safety, newcomer Chris Conte may be fighting with Keith Tandy for one spot as well.