The Buccaneers continued to fill out their roster with cost-affordable options Monday, as the team officially announced the addition of Chase Edmonds and the re-signings of Cam Gill and Patrick O’Connor.
The team fills the opening left behind by Leonard Fournette, the team’s 2022 leading rusher who received his pink slip last Friday. Edmonds largely fizzled during his time split between the Denver Broncos and Miami Dolphins last season, but he was fairly productive in four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.
After the latter pegged him as a 2018 fourth-round pick out of Fordham, Edmonds collected 1,551 yards and caught 128 passes for 921 yards during his Arizona tenure while scoring 14 total touchdowns. While Rachaad White will undoubtedly slot in the No. 1 runner for Tampa, having decent veteran depth between Edmonds and Ke’Shawn Vaughn will allow to team to rest White as necessary without suffering drastic drop-off in performance.
You might still see some level of investment in the draft as well.
The two other names confirmed will ring familiar in Bucs Nation’s collective ears.
O’Connor has logged four seasons of service as one of the team’s most reliable special teams contributors. He has one of the highest snap counts on special teams over the last two years, and he contributes occasional rotation snaps along the defensive line as well. O’Connor also holds the distinction of being the last Buccaneer to block a punt, which came in 2020 against the Denver Broncos.
Last four years, Pat O'Connor has played 1,115 special-teams for Bucs, most on the team. He has 20 total tackles, 1.5 sacks. Was a Lions seventh-round pick in 2017, now back with Bucs for a fifth year in 2023.— Greg Auman (@gregauman) March 18, 2023
Gill will get presumably one more chance to stick as a special teams piece and depth edge rusher. His last two years have been marred by injuries, with a Lisfranc ailment sidelining him for all of 2022. He beat the odds in 2020 when he made the final 53-man roster as an undrafted free agent, and he memorably notched his first sack in Super Bowl LV. He logged 100 defensive snaps in 2021, notching 1.5 sacks, 11 tackles, and three quarterback hits.
It’s a one-year deal for OLB Cam Gill to return to Bucs. He was not tendered as a restricted free agent. Good depth at OLB and a regular on special teams. Will be an unrestricted free agent in 2024.— Greg Auman (@gregauman) March 18, 2023
These aren’t the flashy type of moves, but they’re valuable nonetheless. While the Bucs have lost other free agents like Sean Murphy-Bunting to the Tennessee Titans and Mike Edwards to the Kansas City Chiefs, the team may still bring back other affordable options who remain unsigned like William Gholston, Keanu Neal, and Deadrin Senat.