The Tampa Bay Buccaneers today elevated defensive lineman Pat O'Connor and linebacker J.J. Russell from the practice squad to the active roster for Sunday's game vs. Chicago.
O'Connor (6-4, 270) has appeared in 57 career games, all with Buccaneers, since signing with the team as a free agent in 2017. In his career, O'Connor has logged 13 tackles (three for loss), five quarterback hits and 1.5 sacks while being a core contributor on special teams, where he has added seven tackles, one blocked punt and one blocked field goal attempt. He originally entered the league as a seventh-round selection (No. 250 overall) of the Detroit Lions in the 2017 NFL Draft. The Eastern Michigan product is a native of Chicago, and wears No. 79 for Tampa Bay.
Russell (6-1, 225) has appeared in six career games for the Buccaneers, logging four tackles and two special teams tackles. The Grenada, Mississippi, native played collegiately at Memphis (2017-21), starting 50-of-61 games for the Tigers and compiling 306 tackles (24 for loss), eight passes defensed, 5.0 sacks, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, one interception and one blocked kick. He was named first-team All-AAC (American Athletic Conference) in 2021 after leading the AAC in solo tackles per game (6.5) and total tackles per game (10.2), which ranked fourth and ninth in the nation, respectively. Russell originally entered the league as a college free agent with the Buccaneers in May 2022. He wears No. 51 for Tampa Bay.