Buccaneers agree to terms with Ryan Fitzpatrick to be Jameis Winston's backup
Fitzpatrick, who spent the past two seasons with the Jets, has been in the NFL since 2005
The Buccaneers agreed to terms on Friday with Ryan Fitzpatrick, the 34-year-old quarterback who spent the previous two seasons with the Jets, for whom he started 27 games. The 2005 seventh-round pick out of Harvard will serve as Jameis Winston's backup. Tampa Bay's depth chart also includes veterans Ryan Griffin and Sean Renfree and undrafted rookie free agent Sefo Liufau.
A year ago, Fitzpatrick was coming off the best season of his career; he had led the Jets to 10 wins and in the process thrown for 3,905 yards with 31 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. He spent much of last offseason holding out for a new deal. The Jets finally relented just before training camp,. But Fitzpatrick and the Jets struggled in 2016; he started 11 games and threw for 2,710 yards but had only 12 touchdowns against 17 interceptions. The team limped to five wins and Fitzpatrick wasn't re-signed.
Now he joins an up-and-coming Buccaneers team where his role will be clear: Pehind Winston, who is emerging as one of the NFL's best young passers. Tampa Bay spent the offseason upgrading the offense; they signed wide receiver DeSean Jackson, used their first-round pick on tight end O.J. Howard and took speedster Chris Godwin in Round 3.
Fitzpatrick is entering his 13th season. He was drafted by the Rams and also has played for the Bengals, Bills, Titans and Texans.
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