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Buccaneers sign QB Brett Ratliff to Practice Squad - Josh Freeman getting ready?

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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have signed QB Brett Ratliff to the practice squad according to Baltimore Ravens beat writer Aaron Wilson. Ratliff went undrafted in 2007 and has spent a couple of years with the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns. He has never played a regular season game.

The Bucs had an open practice squad spot after re-signing QB Rudy Carpenter to the active roster. It's possible they signed Ratliff simply to take snaps during practice, but that would suggest something else: the Bucs might just be without Josh Freeman a little longer.

Normally, the Bucs carry three quarterbacks to have enough quarterbacks to run practices. With Josh Freeman missing last Sunday's game with a shoulder injury, his availability at least for this week's practices must be in question. That would explain signing a fourth quarterback in Brett Ratliff. And if this Freeman's practice availability is in question, his game availability must be too.