Bucs Agree To Terms With Veteran OT Brown

July 25 – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers added more competition, depth and experience to its offensive line on Thursday when the team agreed to terms with tackle Lomas Brown on a one-year contract. Brown, a seven-time Pro Bowler, spent the last two seasons with the New York Giants. In others news, the Bucs signed tight end Todd Yoder, who had been an exclusive rights free agent, to a one-year deal. Tampa Bay also added another kicker to its roster by signing Rob Hart to a one-year deal.

Just when you thought Tampa Bay's roster had taken shape, the Buccaneers added yet another veteran player to its offensive line when the team agreed to terms with offensive tackle Lomas Brown on Thursday. While terms of the deal were not disclosed, Brown likely received near the veteran league minimum wage, which is $750,000.

The 6-foot-4, 280-pound Brown has started 251 of the 252 games he's played in during his 17-year career. Brown has been selected to the Pro Bowl seven times during his career.

The former Florida Gator entered the National Football League as a 1985 first-round selection (sixth overall) of the Detroit Lions. The Bucs will be Brown's fifth team. After he spent his first 11 seasons with the Lions, Brown spent three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, one season with the Cleveland Browns and the last two seasons with the New York Giants.

Tampa Bay's offensive line allowed 47 sacks in 16 games and were one of the main reasons the team's woeful rushing attack ranked 30th in the league last season. That's why the Bucs signed veteran swing tackle Roman Oben on May 20, re-signed T Pete Pierson during the offseason and added Brown on Thursday. The Buccaneers also replaced starting left guard Randall McDaniel, who retired during the offseason, with veteran left guard Kerry Jenkins via free agency.

Brown, 39, certainly isn't getting any younger, but in two seasons with New York, he started all 32 games at left tackle. Brown also helped anchor New York's offensive line during the 2000-2001 season when the Giants reached Super Bowl XXXV, but lost to the Baltimore Ravens.

While second-year left tackle Kenyatta Walker and right tackle Jerry Wunsch will enter training camp as the starters, both players will be pushed for playing time by Brown, Oben and Pierson.

In other news, Tampa Bay signed tight end Todd Yoder, who had been an exclusive rights free agent, to a one-year contract. Yoder joined the Bucs as a free agent in 2000 and has played in 25 games with one starter. Yoder has made a name for himself with his impressive play on special teams.

The Buccaneers also decided to add an extra leg to its roster before the team reports to training camp on July 28. Tampa Bay signed kicker Rob Hart to a one-year deal on Thursday afternoon. Hart will help keep K Martin Gramatica's leg fresh throughout camp and preseason and will also give Tampa Bay an insurance policy to Gramatica, who had minor knee surgery during the offseason. Hart, who is a native of Great Britain, kicked for the Scottish Claymores each of the past four years. During that span, Hart has drilled 41-of-52 field goal attempts (78.8 percent) and was perfect on all his extra point attempts.

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