Two of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' most notable free agency additions of the 2010 offseason have emerged as starters heading into the third week of the preseason.
On Monday, two days after the Buccaneers' 20-15 win over Kansas City in preseason Week Two, the team issued an updated depth chart that featured several new starters.
On offense, 10th-year veteran
And on defense, seventh-year veteran
Morris has stated that the starting lineups for the third game of the preseason would likely be a good indication of who the team will field to open the regular season against the Cleveland Browns on September 12. The Bucs are following the preseason progression used by most teams in the NFL, giving their starters brief cameos in the first two games before leaving them in much longer in game three.
Vincent started 30 of 32 games over the past two seasons in Carolina, helping the Panthers rank third in the NFL in rushing in both of those campaigns. Carolina's rushing totals of 2,437 yards in 2008 and 2,498 yards in 2009 represent the two highest marks in franchise history. Carolina also set a team record in 2008 by allowing only 20 sacks all season.
Vincent has played in 97 total NFL games, starting 79 during stints with Carolina, Arizona, Baltimore and Pittsburgh. In 2004, he started every game for the Steelers as they advanced to the AFC Championship Game and racked up 2,464 rushing yards.
Zuttah started all 16 games at right guard for the Buccaneers in 2009 and has a total of 21 starts over his first two seasons. A third-round draft pick out of Rutgers in 2008, Zuttah has started at both guard spots for the Buccaneers and also played tackle in college. He has worked at center for the Buccaneers, as well, as he did for a portion of the game against the Chiefs. Zuttah’s versatility makes him an ideal reserve who can step in at any spot on the line on game day.
Jones is a very experienced NFL starter, as well. In his one season with the Eagles last year, he started nine games and contributed 61 tackles, two interceptions and one sack. Drafted in the second round by the Browns in 2004, Jones started 44 games over the 2006-08 seasons in Cleveland and emerged as one of the NFL's best ballhawking safeties. His 16 interceptions over the past four seasons are tied for fourth in the NFL among all safeties, trailing only Ed Reed (14), Oshiomogho Atogwe (18) and Darren Sharper (18).