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Bucs Sign C Donovan Raiola

One day after finishing their offseason practice schedule, the Buccaneers made a switch along the offensive line, signing first-year C Donovan Raiola


Donovan Raiola's quest to land a spot in the NFL has taken him to five different cities since 2006. Tampa will be the sixth.

On Wednesday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced that they had signed Raiola, a first-year center out of the University of Wisconsin. To make room for Raiola on the 80-man offseason roster, the Buccaneers released another center with Big Ten roots, rookie Jeff Tow-Arnett of the University of Minnesota.

The 6-2, 293-pound Raiola first entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent with the St. Louis Rams in 2006. He has since had several lengthy stints on the Rams' practice squad, including the last half of the 2007 season and a portion of 2008. Raiola has also spent time with the Pittsburgh Steelers (2007), Seattle Seahawks (2008), Arizona Cardinals (2009) and Chicago Bears (2009).

Raiola is the younger brother of Dominic Raiola, a veteran center entering his 10th season with the Detroit Lions. A second-round pick in 2001, the elder Raiola has played in 135 games with 119 starts. Though both brothers played their high school ball in Hawaii, Dominic chose Nebraska while Donovan later played for the Badgers.

Donovan Raiola started his last three seasons at Wisconsin, opening a total of 39 games and winning honorable mention All-Big Ten honors each year. As a senior, he helped the Badgers average just under 400 yards of offense per game and rank 14th in the nation in scoring.

Tow-Arnett signed with the Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent on May 17, two weeks after participating in the team's rookie mini-camp on a tryout contract.

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