Buccaneers Rumor Mill: Thursday Edition

The rumors are flying fast and so are the potential player meetings for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Bucsblitz.com is combing the Internet and talking to agents to get you the inside scoop on who's coming and how might come. Bucsblitz.com has updates on Warrick Dunn, Julius Jones, John Wade, Marques Douglas and D.J. Hackett.

Updated 8:30 a.m.


Warrick Dunn: There is plenty of speculation in Dallas that Dunn is interested in joining the Cowboys, a team some will likely see as the favorite to win the NFC in 2008. A dallasnews.com story by Albert Breer cited that Dunn was interested, and was waiting to see if the feeling was mutual. The Cowboys are said to be in a wait-and-see mode. Last anyone heard, Dunn was in his Tampa home contemplating his meeting with the Buccaneers on Monday.

Julius Jones: Jones has now reportedly visited Detroit and Tennessee, according to dallasnews.com. Jones met with Tennessee on Wednesday. Would Tampa Bay be a logical next stop? There has reportedly been at least lukewarm interest in Tampa Bay's part, but the Buccaneers are likely waiting to see how the Dunn situation plays out.

John Wade: The Houston Texans reportedly made Wade an offer on Wednesday, according to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle. Wade is reportedly visiting other teams.

Marques Douglas: Douglas is still believed to be visiting the Bucs this week. His agent, however, has not confirmed the meeting with Bucsblitz.com.

Joe Barry: The Lions defensive coordinator remains in contention to sign several former Buccaneers. The Lions have already signed safety Dwight Smith. Now they're targeting cornerback Brian Kelly, defensive tackle Chuck Darby and defensive end/tackle Ellis Wyms. The Lions use the same Cover 2 defense the quartet are accustomed to.

Brian Kelly: On the heels of his meeting with the Lions, Giantsinsider.com's Ken Palmer reported on Wednesday that Kelly would meet with the New York Giants on Thursday. Kelly appears to be assessing his options at the moment.

Eugene Wilson: Wilson is getting plenty of love. He met with the New York Jets on Wednesday and will reportedly meet with Tennessee later this week. The safety — who can also play nickel corner, according to our patriotsinsider.com editor Jon Scott — has already met with Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh. It's difficult to gauge who's ahead in this derby, of sorts.

D.J. Hackett: Hackett's agent told Seattle news outlets that returning to the Seahawks is still an option for his client. Given the level of interest in Hackett so far in free agency — he hasn't taken a single meeting with a prospective team — the Seahawks may end up being his only option. Hackett's agent, Kevin Robinson, said he has not heard from the Bucs since their initial phone conversation.

Bryant Johnson: General Manager Bruce Allen said he's had open dialogue with Johnson's agent, but not much else. Johnson met with the Bills earlier this week.

Ben Troupe: The Bucs and Bills are the two teams reportedly vying for Troupe's services. They're the only two teams with confirmed player meetings at this time.

Jovan Haye: Haye reportedly received a first-round tender offer from the Buccaneers. A check of the restricted free agent tenders reveals that Haye may be in line for $2 million in 2008 if he signs with the Bucs. That's the amount the Bucs would pay him if he accepted the tender. That also means that a team would have to sign Haye to a salary higher than the tender and offer up a first-round pick to the Bucs. That's unlikely, but Haye is free to negotiate until April 18.

Jevon Kearse: The veteran DE is returning to his original team after agreeing to a two-year contract on Thursday.


Matthew Postins covers the Buccaneers for BucsBlitz.com and the Charlotte Sun-Herald in Port Charlotte, Fla. An award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers Association, he appears frequently on Scot Brantley Show from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WHBO 1470-AM in Tampa-Clearwater.


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