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NFL rumor: Buccaneers going after Chris Conte?

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

According to Rand Getlin of Yahoo! Sports, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will go after safety Chris Conte. The former Chicago Bear played free safety for two years under Lovie Smith after being a 2011 third-round pick. He's started for the Bears the past two years, too, but with significantly less success. In all, he's had nine interceptions and 21 pass defenses over his four-year career.

If the Bucs do go after Conte, it's a safe bet that they cut Dashon Goldson and save $4 million in doing so. Goldson has been okay under Lovie Smith, but isn't worth anywhere close to what he's set to earn this season. Conte should be a cheap signing who knows the system and can fill in when necessary, like Major Wright was last year.

I wouldn't expect this to preclude the Bucs from going after safety Devin McCourty, who's a perfect fit for Tampa but who's also very, very coveted on the open market. He's likely to cost upwards of $10 million per year, and there's no guarantee the Bucs will even be able to get him in the building, let alone sign him.