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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs 2024 Camp Roster Running Heavier at QB, WR, DL

The Bucs are going back to a four-quarterback room for this year's camp and will also be sorting through a larger group of receiver candidates than they did last summer


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are exactly four weeks away from their first training camp practice of 2024, and the AdventHealth Training Center – where that camp will take place – is quiet. With almost all of the Buccaneers players scattered to their various homes or vacation spots, there is very little football work going on at team headquarters.

That includes roster-shaping efforts. When the Buccaneers broke minicamp earlier this month and headed into their final break, they did so with the 91-man roster they will take into late July and August. There could be a tweak or two to the player list, but for the most part this is the group from which the eventual 53-man active roster will be carved.

(The Buccaneers will take 91 players to camp because tackle Lorenz Metz, a product of the International Player Pathway program, does not count against the usual 90-man limit.)

Ninety-man rosters evolve significantly from one summer to the next – 39 of the 91 players on the Bucs' current roster did not got to the team's 2023 training camp – but the overall structure of those rosters are usually very similar. That is, there are approximate target numbers of how many players the team wants to bring to camp at each position. There are, for instance, usually at least 15 offensive linemen, which allows for three complete units. There will always be about twice as many receivers as there are running backs or tight ends. The defensive line group usually hits double digits.

That said, there are some notable differences in how this year's camp roster has been arranged as compared to last year. The three positions that are getting a little more attention this summer are quarterback, defensive line and wide receiver.

Here are the camp depth numbers at each position for 2023 and 2024:

  • Defensive Linemen: 2023 (10), 2024 (11)
  • Outside Linebacker: 2023 (9), 2024 (9)
  • Linebacker: 2023 (7), 2024 (7)
  • Cornerback: 2023 (10), 2024 (9)
  • Safety: 2023 (6), 2024 (7)
  • Offensive Linemen: 2023 (17), 2024 (15)
  • Tight End: 2023 (6), 2024 (6)
  • Running Back: 2023 (6), 2024 (6)
  • Wide Receiver: 2023 (11), 2024 (13)
  • Quarterback: 2023 (3), 2024 (4)
  • Kicker: 2023 (2), 2024 (1)
  • Punter: 2023 (1), 2024 (1)
  • Long-Snapper: 2023 (2), 2024 (2)

It's not unusual for the Bucs to take four quarterbacks to training camp; they did so in both 2021 and 2022 after drafting Kyle Trask in the second round of the 2021 draft. However, last year they rolled with just three passers, with Baker Mayfield and Trask battling for the starting job and John Wolford providing depth. This year, the team is going back to using four passers in camp, with Mayfield, Trask and Wolford all returning and undrafted rookie Zack Annexstad of Illinois State joining the mix. This is the first time since 2020, when the Bucs signed San Diego's Reid Sinnett, that the team is taking an undrafted rookie quarterback to camp.

The Bucs have also loaded up at wide receiver, starting things off with 13 of them, two more than they had at the beginning of their 2023 camp. Eight of those 13 are new to the team, including the two most recent additions to the roster, third-year man Cody Thompson and longtime New York Giant Sterling Shepard. Tampa Bay also drafted Washington receiver Jalen McMillan in the third round in April and then signed three more pass-catchers after the draft in Barton College's Kameron Johnson, Southern Mississippi's Latreal Jones and Eastern Michigan's Tanner Knue.

The Buccaneers are also currently one deeper on the defensive line than they were at the start of camp a year ago, going with 11 this summer. That includes seven of the 10 defensive linemen who were part of the action at the AdventHealth Training Center last July and August. The three newcomers to that group are Eric Banks and Lwal Uguak, both signed to reserve/futures contracts in late January; and former Ram Earnest Brown, who was picked up in May after being released by Los Angeles. Uguak, who played for the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League in 2023, is getting his first crack at an NFL training camp.

The Bucs are balancing out the extra players at those three spots by taking only 15 offensive linemen into camp, down two from where they started a year ago. They also have one fewer specialist because the team had a competition for the kicker job last August between Chase McLaughlin and Rodrigo Blankenship. McLaughlin won that job and then solidified his spot with the best season by a placekicker in franchise history. He's the only kicker in camp this year, though the team is once again carrying two long-snappers, the same duo of Zach Triner and Evan Deckers as last year.

The defense will start this year's camp with 16 defensive backs, the same as a year ago. However, they are starting off with nine cornerbacks and seven safeties, as compared to 10 cornerbacks and six safeties. Of course, the positional flexibility of players such as Christian Izien, Josh Hayes and Tykee Smith makes that distinction fairly meaningless.

There will be changes to the 91-man roster during training camp, of course, often prompted by injuries that leave certain positions short-handed. For instance, about two weeks into last year's camp, the team signed wide receiver Cephus Johnson and released tackle Grant Hermanns, which made those positional numbers closer to what they are for the 2024 camp. That said, the Bucs likely already have all the players that will eventually make the 53-man roster. They simply have more competition at some spots than others.

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