Bucs Release C Hires; Sign G Grice

September 26 - With Pro Bowl C Jeff Christy healthy again, Tampa Bay evidently no longer needed rookie C Leon Hires' services. The Buccaneers released Hires on Wednesday and filled the vacant roster spot by signing rookie G Shane Grice to a two-year contract.

When rookie C Leon Hires was activated on Tampa Bay's 53-man roster after C Jeff Christy suffered an MCL sprain against the Cleveland Browns, one might have assumed the move would only be temporary. On Wednesday, that assumption proved to be a fair one.

Thanks to the two-week break the Buccaneer have had, Christy has fully recovered from his knee injury, which means Hires became expendable. Hires was released on Wednesday and rookie G Shane Grice filled his roster spot.

Grice, who was released by the Buccaneers on August 27, spent three weeks in Chicago playing for the Bears on their practice squad. The Buccaneers signed Grice to a two-year contract. "Shane's a guy that was doing well and we liked in camp" said head coach Tony Dungy. "It was just the injury situation with Jeff that forced our hand. Fortunately, now we've got some time off and we're rested and pretty healthy, so now we can go back to the plan."

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