Spence, Santos Among Final Cuts to Get Bucs' Roster to 53

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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made 17 more roster moves on Saturday to get their roster down to the regular-season limit of 53 players before the 4:00 p.m. ET deadline.

Those moves included the waiver or release of 15 players, including fourth-year outside linebacker Noah Spence, veteran kicker Cairo Santos and a trio of safeties: John Battle, Kentrell Brice and Isaiah Johnson.

In addition, veteran outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list due to a neck injury sustained in a spring auto accident. Players who begin the season on the NFI list must sit out at least the first three games before they can begin a 21-day window to practice with the team. They can be activated to the 53-man roster at any point during those 21 days; if not, they revert to the NFI list for the remainder of the season. Cornerback Ryan Smith, who received a four-game suspension from the NFL, has been placed on the reserve/suspended list.

The Buccaneers had begun trimming their 90-man preseason roster down on Friday with the waiver of 19 young players and the release of two vested veterans, inside linebacker Corey Nelson and center Josh LeRibeus. That left the roster at 69, though it increased to 70 on Saturday when the Bucs swung a trade with Pittsburgh to land fourth-year offensive tackle Jerald Hawkins. The Bucs made the following 17 moves to complete the cut to 53:

WAIVED:

·     RB Bruce Anderson

·     S John Battle

·     DL Terry Beckner

·     T Cole Boozer

·     S Kentrell Brice

·     WR Emanuel Hall

·     S Isaiah Johnson

·     TE Jordan Leggett

·     OLB Noah Spence

·     C Nate Trewyn

·     CB Mazzi Wilkins

WAIVED/INJURED:

·     DL Jeremiah Ledbetter

WAIVED/NON-FOOTBALL INJURY:

·     QB Nick Fitzgerald

RELEASED:

·     RB Andre Ellington

·     K Cairo Santos

PLACED ON RESERVE/NON-FOOTBALL INJURY LIST:

·     OLB Jason Pierre-Paul

PLACED ON RESERVE/SUSPENDED LIST:

·     CB Ryan Smith

Seven of the Buccaneers' eight 2019 draft picks made the team, including fifth-round kicker Matt Gay, who won his competition with veteran Cairo Santos. Gay made five of his six field goal attempts in the preseason, including two last-minute game-winners and deep shots of 53 and 55 yards, and was three-for-three on extra point tries. Santos made all four of his kicks – two field goals and two PATs – and is likely to find several suitors as a free agent. The only 2019 draftee who did not initially make the roster is the last one, seventh-round defensive lineman Terry Beckner.

Beckner and many of the players waived on Saturday will be prime candidates to return to the Buccaneers' practice squad, provided they are not claimed by other teams on waivers.

View photos of the Buccaneers' 53-man roster.

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