Bucs Bring DL Pat O’Connor Right Back, Sign Him to Practice Squad

OLB Patrick O’Connor, No. 79
OLB Patrick O’Connor, No. 79

Less than a day after officially filling out their practice squad to the maximum-allotted 10 players, the Bucs shuffled things around, adding defensive lineman Pat O’Connor and releasing running back Bruce Anderson in a corresponding move.

O’Connor spent last season on Tampa Bay’s practice squad as well. The Chicago-native had a great preseason this year, switching from outside linebacker to defensive lineman about halfway through. He recorded two sacks, tying for the team lead, in four games played and had initially been announced as part of the Bucs’ 53-man roster on Saturday.

He was part of a defensive line group that included six players initially, learning from veterans like Ndamukong Suh and Beau Allen. Though he looked to have made the most of his opportunity to work with the group, O’Connor was waived to make room for the team’s claim of running back and kick return specialist T.J. Logan off waivers.

However, the Bucs weren’t actually ready to part ways with the developing player, as O’Connor will now rejoin the team on the practice squad. The Bucs now list five defensive linemen on their 53-man roster with the aforementioned Suh and Allen, along with Vita Vea, Will Gholston and Rakeem Nunez-Roches. O’Connor joins seventh-round pick Terry Beckner Jr. as the only defensive trench dwellers on the practice squad.

To make room for O’Connor, the Bucs waived rookie running back Bruce Anderson, who was signed by the team as an undrafted free agent out of North Dakota State this offseason. Anderson found himself behind the likes of Peyton Barber, Ronald Jones and Dare Ogunbowale. With the signing of Logan, and running back Tony Brooks-James to the practice squad, the numbers game unfortunately wasn’t in Anderson’s favor.

The Bucs practice squad now sits at 10.

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