The Tampa Bay Buccaneers flew back from Louisiana on Sunday evening after defeating the New Orleans Saints, 26-19. Cameron Brate, who watched that game from the Superdome sidelines, followed the team to Tampa two days later.
On Tuesday, the Buccaneers re-signed Brate, a first-year tight end who played in five games for Tampa Bay last year and went to training camp with the team again this summer. Brate was at Sunday's game because he had been on the Saints' practice squad since the previous Wednesday. Brate took the roster spot opened on Monday when the team released linebacker Orie Lemon.
The Buccaneers also signed third-year defensive end Josh Martin, who spent the past two seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs, and waived defensive end Kourtnei Brown.
Lemon wasn't gone long, either. He has been signed to the practice squad, along with newcomers Evan Spencer, a wide receiver out of Ohio State, and Martin Wallace, a tackle who is back for a second stint on that crew. To make room for those three, the Buccaneers released defensive tackle Derrick Lott, linebacker Julian Stanford and wide receiver Rannell Hall from the practice squad.
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Brate initially made the Bucs' active roster after the league-wide cutdown to 53 players on September 6. However, he was waived the next day after the team claimed five players off waivers from other teams. Brate then joined Tampa Bay's practice squad but was released from that crew after one week. The Saints brought him in the next day. Players who are on NFL practice squads are still eligible to be signed by other teams, as long as that signing is to the new team's active roster. Such players must remain on the new team's active roster for at least three weeks.
Behind the scenes photos from the Bucs win against the Saints in New Orleans.
The return of Brate comes after starting tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins left Sunday's game with a shoulder injury. Seferian-Jenkins will be evaluated further as the week progresses, but if he is unable to play against Houston on Sunday, the Buccaneers will still be able to field three tight ends – Brate, Brandon Myers and Luke Stocker.
The 6-5, 235-pound Brate played his college ball at Harvard and came to the Buccaneers as an undrafted rookie free agent in 2014. He spent the first three months of his rookie campaign on Tampa Bay's practice squad before a late-November promotion allowed him to appear in the last five games. He made one start and recorded one catch for 17 yards.
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Martin (6-3, 245) originally entered the league with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013, as a college free agent out of Columbia. In two seasons with the Chiefs, the Aurora, Colorado native played in 19 regular season games, with one start, registering 14 tackles, one forced fumble and a half sack, to go along with 13 special teams tackles. Martin also saw action in Kansas City's 2013 Divisional Round playoff game, tallying a special teams tackle.
Lemon (6-1, 242) was signed to the Buccaneers' active roster on September 16 and saw action at New Orleans in Week Two. He also played in 10 games with the Buccaneers last season, starting three. Prior to that, Lemon played eight games with the Dallas Cowboys in 2012-13 and also saw brief stints in Kansas City and Arizona. Spencer (6-2, 208), who is the son of Buccaneers Running Backs Coach Tim Spencer, was drafted by the Washington Redskins in the sixth round this past spring. Wallace played collegiately at Ohio State and entered the league as a sixth-round pick (187th overall) of the Washington Redskins in the 2015 NFL Draft. The Vernon Hills, Illinois native spent this past offseason and preseason with Washington, before being waived on September 9.
Wallace (6-6, 330) played collegiately at Temple and was also on the Buccaneers' practice squad during Week One of the season.