Report: Duncan Agrees to Terms with St. Louis

March 3 – According to ESPN, the St. Louis Rams have lured yet another Pewter Pirate away from Tampa Bay. The Rams have reached an agreement with MLB Jamie Duncan, which means the Buccaneers will either promote Nate Webster to the starting role or fill the vacancy via free agency.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have lost their fifth player to the St. Louis Rams via free agency in two seasons. According to ESPN, the Rams have agreed to terms with MLB Jamie Duncan.

The contract is believed to be a four-or-five-year deal that will average out to $2.2 million per year.

Duncan, 26, was drafted by Tampa Bay in the third round of the 1998 draft. Duncan (6-1, 238) became Tampa Bay's starting middle linebacker in 2000 when Hardy Nickerson signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars via free agency.

Last year, the Rams dipped heavily into the Buccaneers' well of free agents. St. Louis brought linebackers coach Lovie Smith over from Tampa Bay to become defensive coordinator. The Rams also signed four Bucs free agents--DE Chidi Ahanotu, LB Don Davis, DT/DE Tyoka Jackson and WR Yo Murphy.

Duncan has started 36 of the 59 games he has played in, and he has recorded 187 tackles, two sacks and two interceptions during his career. He will replace unrestricted free agent London Fletcher, who the Rams were interested in re-signing, but became frustrated by how contract negotiations were progressing.

Bucs third-year MLB Nate Webster will likely fill the void left by Duncan. Webster (5-11, 225) was selected by Tampa Bay in the third round of the 2000 draft, and saw significant playing time during his first two seasons with the Bucs.

There is a chance Tampa Bay could opt to fill Duncan's shoes by taking a look at some free agent middle linebackers like Fletcher.

Tampa Bay will certainly have to draft and or sign at least one middle linebacker since Webster is now the only player filling that position on Tampa Bay's current roster.

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