The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 90-man roster was intact for the start of Training Camp 2012 on Thursday, but it didn't last long in its original state.
The Buccaneers announced a series of roster moves late on Thursday afternoon, most notably the trade of third-year defensive tackle Brian Price to the Chicago Bears for an undisclosed pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. The completion of the deal, as always, is pending a physical for Price in Chicago.
Tampa Bay added one player to its camp roster as well, signing former Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Williams, who originally entered the league as a fifth-round pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2008. However, the Bucs still finished the day with three open spots on the 90-man roster after waiving wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe and defensive back Devin Holland.
Several other moves made on Thursday affected how the Bucs will take the practice field on Friday but not the number of players on the roster. First, defensive tackle Amobi Okoye and linebacker Adam Hayward were removed from the active/physically-unable-to-perform (PUP) list and will thus be able to practice with the team immediately. Going in the other direction were defensive end Da'Quan Bowers and cornerback Derrick Roberson, both of whom were placed on the active/PUP list.
Bowers tore an Achilles tendon during a non-contact workout in May and is expected to miss a significant portion of the upcoming season, while Roberson sustained his injury more recently. Both players can be removed from the active/PUP list at any time and rejoin the team at practice; only a move to the reserve/PUP list would force either player to miss the first six weeks of the regular season.
Finally, starting left tackle Donald Penn was placed on the active/non-football-injury list due to the calf strain he suffered while working out in Los Angeles recently. As with Bowers and Roberson, Penn can come off his current list and return to active status at any time. Head Coach Greg Schiano indicated on Thursday that he expected Bowers to miss at least a couple weeks of action.
Primarily an outside linebacker, the 6-1, 225-pound Williams made the Jaguars' roster as a rookie and played in six games but was released during the final cuts in 2009. He spent September of that season on Seattle's practice squad and the last two months of the year on New England's practice squad before being promoted to the active roster during the postseason.
Williams went on to play two games for the Bills in 2010, then signed with Carolina in December of that season, appearing on the practice squad. He made the Panthers' 53-man roster last season, playing in seven games with two starts and contributing 11 tackles and four passes defensed. Williams played his college ball at USC, where he played all three linebacker positions and even filled in at fullback during his senior campaign.
The Buccaneers drafted Price in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He missed most of his rookie season due to a series of injuries but last year appeared in 15 games, recording 28 tackles and three sacks. Briscoe originally signed with the Buccaneers' practice squad as a rookie in 2010 and was later promoted to the active roster. He appeared in 18 games over the past two seasons, recording 41 catches for 480 yards and seven touchdowns. Holland made the Bucs' roster as an undrafted rookie last fall, primarily as a special teams player, but suffered a season-ending injury just four games into the season.