Leonard Johnson, an undrafted rookie who signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers over the weekend, isn't worried about his path to the NFL.
"Someone told me yesterday, 'It's not how you get here,'" he recalled. "'It's what you do when you're here.'"
That's the key message for all of the 80-plus players on the Buccaneers' roster heading into May OTA days, June mini-camp and, eventually, training camp in July and August. The current roster isn't necessarily the exact group of players the Buccaneers will take into training camp, but it's a lot closer after a round of maneuvers executed after the conclusion of the team's post-draft rookie mini-camp.
On Monday, the Buccaneers announced a series of roster moves, including the addition of 11 players who had attended that weekend camp on tryout contracts. Among the newest Buccaneers are LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson, Arkansas running back De'Anthony Curtis and Nebraska tackle Jermarcus Hendricks.
Tampa Bay also signed two veteran free agents who had tried out over the weekend (cornerback Derrick Roberson and defensive end Hilee Taylor ) and waived 12 other players. Some of the players released were actually rookies signed in the hours after the draft, as the weekend mini-camp helped the Buccaneers sort through players of all origins to determine which were the best fit for the offseason roster.
Here's the complete list of the undrafted rookies who received contracts on Monday after participating over the weekend on tryout contracts:
- Wagner DE Quintin Anderson
- Ball State S Sean Baker
- Arkansas RB De'Anthony Curtis
- Iowa P Eric Guthrie
- Nebraska T Jermarcus Hardrick
- LSU QB Jordan Jefferson
- Henderson State FB Antonio Leak
- North Carolina DT Jordan Nix
- Toledo TE Danny Noble
- Connecticut C Moe Petrus
- Portland State DT Myles Wade
The Buccaneers also signed the aforementioned veterans Roberson and Taylor. Roberson is actually back for a second stint in Tampa after spending much of 2009 and training camp in 2010 with the team. Taylor has previously spent time with the Carolina Panthers and Detroit Lions.
Finally, the Buccaneers waived the following 12 players:
- WR Luther Ambrose
- LB Ryan Baker
- LB Mike Balogun
- QB Zach Collaros
- S Ron Girault
- C Chaz Hine
- DT Donte'e Nicholls
- T Trevor Olson
- G Chris Riley
- K Jake Rogers
- CB Quenton Washington
- T Rocky Weaver
Riley spent a portion of the 2011 season on the Buccaneers' practice squad. Balogun, Girault and Rogers are all first-year players who signed with the team earlier in the 2012 offseason (Balogun was also briefly on the practice squad last fall). The other eight players were all undrafted free agents who signed with the team last weekend.