The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced 11 undrafted rookie signings on Monday but saved one for Tuesday, adding former Texas A&M linebacker Steven Jenkins to the list. The roster remained at 89 players, however, as the team also waived third-year running back Michael Smith.
Jenkins is actually the second member of the Aggies' 2013 linebacking corps to head to Tampa, joining former teammate Nate Askew. NFL teams are allowed to carry up to 90 players on their rosters during the offseason, and the Buccaneers have added 18 in the last five days, including six draft picks. Smith is one of four players the Bucs have released in that same span, joining fullback Josh Baker, cornerback Bobby Felder and tight end Steve Maneri.
The 6-2, 220-pound Jenkins led the Aggies in tackles last year with 96 despite missing two of the team's 13 games. He also contributed 5.5 tackles for loss (tied for second on the team), one sack, three passes defensed and a forced fumble. He capped his collegiate career with seven tackles and half a sack in A&M's 52-48 win over Duke in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
Jenkins played three seasons in College Station after transferring from Coffeyville (KS) Community College in 2011. He was a starter for most of those three years, playing in 36 games and recording 236 stops and 12 tackles for loss. Jenkins hails from Pensacola, FL.
Smith joined the Buccaneers as a seventh-round draft pick out of Utah State in 2012. He made the active roster as a rookie and appeared in the season-opener, returning three kickoffs for 55 yards, but was inactive for each of the 15 games that followed. Last year, Smith suffered a foot injury during the preseason and spent the year on injured reserve. The Buccaneers were obviously dealing from a position of depth in releasing Smith. In addition to the returning trio of Doug Martin, Michael James and Bobby Rainey, the team also used its third-round pick on West Virginia running back Charles Sims on Friday.