The Buccaneers 2023 training camp will be here before we know it and with that, there will be an opportunity for many players to make their marks on the team.
However in order to keep certain players, that means that some players, potentially notable ones will have to be let go if they do not perform well enough during camp and the preseason. These three players could be on that roster bubble for the team heading into 2023.
Running Back Ke’Shawn Vaughn
A former third round pick of Tampa Bay’s in the 2020 NFL Draft, Vaughn has struggled to find a consistent spot in the Buccaneers’ offense. In his rookie campaign, he did not see much action on offense as the team had players like Leonard Fournette, Ronald Jones and even LeSean McCoy who saw more action in 2020 than Vaughn did. The following season saw Fournette and Jones continue to take most of the snaps at the position and 2022 had the emergence of a fellow third round running back in Rachaad White.
While Fournette is no longer on the team, the Bucs still do not seem to have much faith in Vaughn even being the second option for the team as they went out signed Chase Edmonds in free agency this offseason. Not only did they sign Edmonds in free agency, but they were also able to snag Sean Tucker who was one of the top undrafted free agents and likely would have been a draft pick he didn’t have injury concerns.
If Tucker is cleared in time for camp and impresses, it may be enough to push Vaughn out the door completely as the Bucs can likely find some other backs to play special teams if need be. It is year four for Vaughn and things don’t appear to be too promising as far as his playing time in Tampa Bay goes so don’t be surprised if Vaughn is the odd man out in the running back room.
Outside Linebacker, Cam Gill
I know Gill is not the flashiest name but to the truth, the Buccaneers do not have many huge names who may be cut because it is a lot of young players who are unproven right now. Gill however is considered a veteran who has stuck around in Tampa the last few seasons. In his time with the team so far he has been purely a reserve player.
Where Gill could find himself in trouble this summer is if he does not have a productive camp. The Buccaneers have Shaq Barrett returning from injury, Joe Tryon Shoyinka looking to break out and they re-signed Anthony Nelson. However the big key to Gill’s status with the club is the fact that the team drafted two outside linebackers in YaYa Diaby and Jose Ramirez. Diaby was a third round pick so he’s essentially a lock to make the team, but Ramirez’s spot is not guaranteed by any means but it may come down to who has the better camp and preseason and given that they just invested a draft pick in Ramirez, he may have the early edge over Gill.
Guard, Aaron Stinnie
The final name on this list is a pretty notable one. Stinnie filled in for the injured Alex Cappa during the 2020 playoffs and helped the team win a Super Bowl, but he also suffered a torn ACL and MCL injury during the 2022 preseason which caused him to miss the entire 2022 campaign. The Buccaneers brought him back on a one year deal this offseason for a chance to compete for a starting guard spot.
Stinnie will certainly get the opportunity to compete for that guard spot and if he does not earn the starting role, it would not be a surprise to see him stick around as a backup, but also would not be shocking if the team moved on. The reason for this is that Tampa Bay select guard Cody Mauch in the second round of the draft and with Nick Leverett and Robert Hainsey already in the fold, there will be four guys competing for two spots.
The other reason it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Stinnie get cut is an unfortunate one but he may just not be the same player he was before the injury. It was a major injury that took out an entire year of his career so we will see how Stinnie looks in this year’s camp, but he could be someone who is on the bubble heading into it.
Training Camp this year will have a different feel to it from previous camps. Lots of unproven players will be given opportunities and there will even be a quarterback “competition” happening. However with every camp, there will always be those players on the bubble and these guys could very well find themselves there when it is all said and done.