Buccaneers Add Another Wide Receiver to Compete for 5th Spot

Getty Images Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost wideout Johnathan Franklin to a season-ending knee injury last week and they’ve added a replacement. The franchise has brought back Spencer Schnell, who was released at the end of July.

Schnell, who isn’t yet with the team as he goes through COVID-19 protocols, had a strong showing in training camp last season, though the Bucs released him last season. He

Tampa Bay’s top four wide receivers are locked into the depth chart: Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Scotty Miller, and Justin Watson. Behind them is a battle for the fifth WR slot. Bryant Mitchell, Cyril Grayson Jr, Tyler Johnson, John Hurst, and Josh Pearson will compete alongside Schnell for a spot on the team.

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Gronkowski Laughs Off Coaching Chide

Bruce Arians is confident that Rob Gronkowski will be able to be a major contributor in Tampa Bay’s offense.

“He’s probably in New England shape right now,” Arians said (Greg Auman of TheAthletic.com). “He’s not in Florida shape. The heat’s kicking his ass pretty good. It’s different, man . . . I don’t think he’s ever sweat that much in his life.”

Gronk laughed off the comments from his new coach.

“I’ll take that,” he said (via the team’s website). “I’ll take that compliment for sure. I’m feeling good out there. My body feels good. That’s why I came back to the game and that’s how I want to be moving. I want to be moving like how I was back in the day. No doubt about that.”

Like Tom Brady, Gronkowski enters the 2020 season playing for a non-Patriots team for the first time in his life. The tight end has “no regrets” about how everything played out.

“I feel like I’m supposed to be here,” he said. “That’s definitely in the past and I’m here to play football now. I’m glad to be here. Going out there and just playing ball – it feels good. Let me tell you, the first couple practices, it definitely felt weird. The game was really fast when I first got out there again. The defense felt really fast. As time goes on and as the days go on, I feel better about myself being out there. My confidence keeps going up, the game is slowing down, I’m starting to pick up the offense more. But overall, it’s going good. I have so much more to work on and so much more to improve on, but I am really glad to be here.”

Only One Buccaneers Player Sitting Out

Concerns over the safety of playing amid the COVID-19 pandemic still exist and NFL players have the right to opt-out of the 2020 season. Sixty-nine players have chosen to opt-out, as Pro Football Action captures in its COVID-19 Opt-Out Tracker.

Tackle Brad Seaton is the only member of the Buccaneers on that list. Seaton, who spent 2017 and 2019 on the franchise’s practice squad, was no lock to make the roster, though he could have provided the team with depth on the offensive line.

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