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Buccaneers put Akeem Spence on injured reserve, promote Mike James

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Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have moved defensive tackle Akeem Spence to injured reserve, promoting running back Mike James to the active roster to take his place.

Spence has had an odd season. The defensive tackle missed the first half of the season with a back injury and a one-game suspension for a marijuana arrest, but played well once he returned. He'll never be a sack artist, but he proved to be a consistently disruptive force at nose tackle. But just when he seemed to cement his roster spot for next season, he injured his ankle and has now been placed on injured reserve.

Meanwhile, James has spent essentially the entire season either inactive or on the practice squad, and there's little reason to believe that's about to change given the quality play the Bucs have gotten out of Doug Martin and Charles Sims. His elevation to the roster does keep other teams from snapping him up for their offseason rosters, though, which may be valuable given that James has looked solid when given the chance to run the ball in the past.