I Guess They Were Undrafted For A Reason

Published: April 30th, 2008
By Bucstats.com weblog

The Bucs are one of the few teams not stocking up on undrafted free agents immediately after the draft. Some teams have up to 17 free agent rookies on their rosters now, all eager to get used and abused for a month or two only to be discarded and never acknowledged again, kind of like that hooker I had tied up in my garage last year.

Part of the reason the Bucs didn't sign many undrafted guys is because there are no longer roster exemptions for NFL Europe players, so all teams now have a hard cap of 80 players they can take to camp, and the Bucs were very active in free agency in March and April. They currently have 77 players on their roster, with seven rookies and one restricted free agent (Jovan Haye) still unsigned, so anyone they add will necessitate someone else being cut in the very near future. That said, they did wind up signing two new players.

Carl Stewart, a fullback from Auburn and Jonathan Hefney, a free safety from Tennessee, were both signed to rookie free agent deals. Stewart didn't play much, but is a good, strong blocker with decent hands for catching the occasional pass or two. He's a good kid, but it's unlikely he'll make the team. Hefney is a physical safety with good tackling skills, but at barely 5-8 and 190, just doesn't have the frame to really threaten at the NFL level. He's a four-year starter with experience at both cornerback and safety and I saw him really lay some dudes out in Tennessee, so maybe he hangs on as a fifth safety who plays special teams? Stranger things have happened. Like when that hooker finally bit through those ropes and started... you know, I should probably stop now.

Basically, it's a contest to see how many Tennessee photos I can post.  I'm winning!