Buccaneers sign Troupe, lose Becht

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have had a busy 24 hours as they've signed a new tight end, re-signed a cornerback and lost their best blocking tight end of 2007. Catch up with those transactions, plus links to other Bucsblitz.com articles right here.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Bruce Allen told several news outlets on Wednesday that the Bucs may seek to improve their roster via trade rather than free agency. Who might those players be? Bucsblitz.com's Matthew Postins asked Scout.com's NFL Senior Reporter Adam Caplan to put together a potential shopping list for the Bucs, players that could be available via trade and would be good fits for the Buccaneers. Want to find out Caplan's selections, and how Postins feels about them? Just click here for this expert analysis that no one else has.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed tight end Ben Troupe to a two-year contract on Thursday, along with re-signing cornerback Sammy Davis.

Meanwhile, the Buccaneers lost tight end Anthony Becht, who bolted for a free-agent deal with the St. Louis Rams.

Troupe (6-fot-4, 270 pounds), a four-year veteran, will join starter Alex Smith and free-agent acquisition John Gilmore at tight end. Troupe enjoyed the best season of his career in 2005, when he caught 55 passes for 530 yards and four touchdowns with the Tennessee Titans. Since then Troupe has caught only 18 passes the past two years.

Troupe also met with Buffalo during the free agency period.

Davis (6-foot, 195 pounds) returns to Tampa Bay after starting one game and netting 19 tackles in 2007. The former first-round pick of the San Diego Chargers in 2003 was briefly unemployed after the Buccaneers released him after the preseason last year. But he quickly returned when Brian Kelly experienced groin problems and became a solid fill-in at nickel corner and on special teams.

Given the Bucs' inability to sign a cornerback from another team during free agency, bringing back a player with knowledge of Tampa's Cover 2 defense was attractive.

Becht (6-foot-5, 280 pounds) spent three seasons with Tampa Bay, but the eight-year veteran never became a big target in Tampa Bay's offense. He caught only five passes last season — a career low. Becht was used primarily as a blocking tight end in two-tight end formations and did an above-average job in that role.

Gilmore will likely take Becht's place in two-tight end formations.

Also, the Buccaneers met with San Francisco defensive end Marques Douglas earlier this week, but there is no movement on a deal as of yet.

It's always been assumed that Cato June would take Derrick Brooks' place at weak side linebacker once the future Hall of Famer retired. But is that really the case? Or is there another play afoot at One Buc Place? Bucsblitz.com examines that, with the help of insider information from Scout.com's Senior NFL reporter Adam Caplan. Click here for this expert analysis.

Bucsblitz.com's Editor, Matthew Postins, has published his first Buccaneers Mock Draft. See who Postins selected for every Buccaneers pick, get expert analysis and possible alternatives at each selection. Just click here and take a look.

Want to sound off about this mock draft? Have an opinion? Express it at the Bucsblitz.com message board. Just click here and look for the "Bucs Mock Draft 1.0 unveiled" post.

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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