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Buccaneers to sign cornerback Robert McClain

The Bucs have agreed to terms with the veteran cornerback.

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have agreed to terms with cornerback Robert McClain on a one-year contract, according to Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times, subsequently confirmed by several other reporters.

McClain was originally a seventh-round pick for the Carolina Panthers in 2010, spending one year with the Panthers, three with the Atlanta Falcons, and then two more years with the Panthers in 2015 and 2016, getting cut in the middle of last season.

The 5’9”, 180 lbs. cornerback has mostly played in the slot, starting 23 games over his seven-year career and picking off four passes in that time.

The Bucs likely signed him for some offseason depth, in part because he’s familiar with defensive coordinator Mike Smith’s system, having played three years under him at Atlanta.

McClain takes the roster spot of undrafted rookie Greg Mabin, who the Bucs cut yesterday. They’re likely to wait a day to officially sign McClain, so as not to make him count for compensatory draft pick purposes—players signed after today don’t count as official free agency additions in the compensatory draft pick formula.

Whether he makes the roster remains to be seen: with Brent Grimes, Vernon Hargreaves, Jude Adjei-Barimah, Josh Robinson, Javien Elliott and last year’s fifth-round pick Ryan Smith on the roster, there’s plenty of depth at the position right now.