Bucs Re-sign Vincent Testaverde, Activate Justin Evans from PUP

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed one player on Saturday but will have two additions to the practice field on Sunday.

Rejoining the Buccaneers for a third time is rookie quarterback Vincent Testaverde, who was with the team for a week-and-a-half in training camp and also participated in the rookie mini-camp in May on a tryout contract. To make room for Testaverde on the 90-man preseason roster, the Buccaneers waived rookie outside linebacker Kahzin Daniels with an injury designation.

Testaverde will join the Bucs for practice on Sunday, as will third-year safety Justin Evans. Evans hadn't played or practice since landing on injured reserve last December due to a foot injury, but he passed a physical on Saturday, clearing him for a return to the field. The Buccaneers had designated him as active/physically unable to perform to start training camp but he has now been activated from that list.

Testaverde is the son of the Buccaneers' all-time leader in passing yards, Vinny Testaverde. The elder Testaverde was the first-overall pick in the 1987 draft and he played six of his 21 NFL seasons in Tampa, recording 14,820 yards on 1,126-of-2,160 passing, with 77 touchdowns and 112 interceptions. The Buccaneers' current starting quarterback, Jameis Winston, heads into the 2019 season less than 200 yards behind Testaverde for the franchise lead in that category. After his departure in free agency in 1993, Testaverde played for five more teams and ended up with 46,233 career passing yards.

The younger Testaverde played his prep football at Jesuit High School, which is located less than a mile from the AdventHealth Training Center. After high school, he first attended Texas Tech, where he played in one game as a true freshman. He transferred to the University of Miami, his father's alma mater, and then later Albany, where he started eight games last fall after sitting out one season. Testaverde threw for 1,714 yards and 11 touchdowns in those eight contests, completing 53.4% of his passes.

Veteran quarterback Blaine Gabbert suffered a shoulder injury in Friday's win over Cleveland and would be unavailable to play in the preseason finale on Thursday in Dallas, though Head Coach Bruce Arians said that Gabbert wouldn't have suited up for that game anyway. With rookie quarterback Nick Fitzgerald not yet ready to come off the active/non-football injury list and Winston also being held out of Thursday's game, the Bucs were down to just Ryan Griffin under center before Testaverde's return. Testaverde's time with the team in camp should allow him to have at least some grasp on the offense for Thursday night.

Daniels joined the Buccaneers as an undrafted rookie out of Charleston in May. He played in the team's first two preseason games, recording one assisted tackle each on defense and special teams, but he was held out of the third game due to injury.

Evans started all 10 games in which he played last season, including the first nine before initially suffering his foot injury. He missed two games then returned for one more start before landing on injured reserve. Evans, a second-round pick in the 2017 draft, also played in 14 games with nine starts as a rookie and, in those 24 total contests, has produced 124 tackles four interceptions, eight passes defensed and one fumble recovery for a touchdown.

His return to the field helps a safety position that was hit hard by injuries midway through camp and is still currently without rookie Mike Edwards, who had been playing with the first team. Evans was considered a prime competitor for a starting spot based on his first two seasons but obviously must play catch-up now after missing all of training camp and the first three preseason games.

The countdown to season kickoff is on! The Bucs are kicking off the NFL’s 100th season with a FREE Tim McGraw pregame concert for all fans with a ticket to the home opener on Sept. 8! Get your tickets today.

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