|Offense||8th||90.6 (26th)||272.9 (4th)|
|Defense||31st||117.5 (23rd)||260.6 (32nd)|
|38||Adjei-Barimah, Jude||CB||5-11||200||7/21/1992||4||Bowling Green|
|82||Auclair, Antony||TE||6-5||256||5/28/1993||2||Laval (Canada)|
|90||Baker, Chris (FA)||DE||6-2||320||10/8/1987||7||Hampton|
|49||Bullough, Riley||LB||6-2||228||11/23/1993||1||Michigan State|
|94||Clarke, Will||DE||6-6||275||5/4/1991||5||West Virginia|
|69||Dotson, Demar||T||6-9||315||10/11/1985||10||Southern Mississippi|
|35||Elliott, Javien||CB||5-11||176||7/18/1993||3||Florida State|
|21||Evans, Justin||SAF||6-0||199||8/26/1995||2||Texas A&M|
|13||Evans, Mike||WR||6-5||231||8/21/1993||5||Texas A&M|
|Fleming, Reese||DB||5-11||202||12/6/1993||1||West Virginia|
|72||Gardner, Cole||LB||6-6||301||11/11/1993||2||Eastern Michigan|
|92||Gholston, William||DE||6-6||281||7/31/1991||6||Michigan State|
|53||Glanton, Adarius||LB||6-1||230||9/21/1990||4||Florida Atlantic|
|12||Godwin, Chris||WR||6-1||209||2/27/1996||2||Penn State|
|52||Harris, Nigel||LB||6-0||230||12/7/1994||2||South Florida|
|39||Johnson, Isaiah||SAF||6-0||209||10/14/1992||1||South Carolina|
|Knox, Jeff||LB||6-2||225||2/22/1992||R||California (PA)|
|Lampman, Jake||WR||6-0||205||6/11/1993||2||Ferris State|
|67||Liedtke, Michael||G||6-3||305||1/13/1992||1||Illinois State|
|Lucien, Devin||WR||6-2||200||6/26/1993||1||Arizona State|
|22||Martin, Doug (FA)||RB||5-9||223||1/13/1989||7||Boise State|
|16||Martino, Freddie||WR||6-0||195||9/7/1991||3||North Greenville|
|79||O'Connor, Pat||DE||6-4||270||11/1/1993||1||Eastern Michigan|
|27||Rivers, David||CB||6-0||185||7/23/1994||1||Youngstown State|
|32||Rodgers, Jacquizz||RB||5-6||205||2/6/1990||8||Oregon State|
|65||Sanborn, Garrison||C||6-1||240||7/31/1985||10||Florida State|
|34||Sims, Charles||RB||6-0||211||9/19/1990||5||West Virginia|
|76||Smith, Donovan||T||6-6||338||6/23/1993||4||Penn State|
|62||Smith, Evan||G||6-2||308||7/19/1986||9||Idaho State|
|29||Smith, Ryan||CB||5-11||189||9/7/1993||3||North Carolina Central|
|57||Spence, Noah||DE||6-2||251||1/8/1994||3||Eastern Kentucky|
|73||Sweezy, J.R.||G||6-5||298||4/8/1989||6||NC State|
|37||Tandy, Keith||DB||5-10||205||2/12/1989||7||West Virginia|
|97||Tu'ikolovatu, Stevie||NT||6-1||320||6/28/1991||2||Southern California|
|71||Ward, Channing||DE||6-4||279||9/17/1992||2||Ole Miss|
|66||Wester, Leonard||T||6-6||305||1/3/1993||3||Missouri Western State|
|85||Wilson, Bobo||WR||5-9||186||1/29/1995||1||Florida State|
|3||Winston, Jameis||QB||6-4||231||1/6/1994||4||Florida State|
|Barnett, Deondre (IR)||DE||6-3||239||//||R||Southern Illinois|
|Sperbeck, Thomas (IR)||WR||6-0||180||10/21/1994||R||Boise State|
In the same report, however, Laine relays that the Buccaneers are hopeful that the surgery Spence underwent in Colorado after being placed on season-ending injured reserve has corrected the problem. The second-year defensive end dislocated his shoulder a total of four times over a span of 12 months, with the first instance having come in Week 4 of his rookie 2016 campaign against the Broncos. Spence also underwent surgery on the shoulder last Jan. 11 to repair what was at the time a fully torn labrum suffered against the Panthers in the 2016 season finale. A first-round talent that slipped in the draft due to off-the-field concerns, Spence has flashed his pass-rushing acumen over his first 22 career games despite often playing hurt and in a part-time role, collecting 6.5 sacks. He'll look to be ready for the start of OTAs, with further updates on his condition expected as that time draws near.
Adjei-Barimah missed the entire 2017 season with a knee injury but was just cleared by his surgeon to resume football activities this week. Only 25, the cornerback has starting experience dating back to 2015 and could attract the attention of several teams, if he can remain healthy throughout the offseason.
The six-year veteran finished the 2017 campaign with at least six tackles in his last eight contests, a welcome sight after he'd posted an atypical three stops apiece in two of the three games prior to the onset of that stretch. David was considerably more productive in his second season in defensive coordinator Mike Smith's scheme, upping his tackle total from 87 to 101 despite playing in three fewer games, and also posting career bests in forced fumbles (five) and fumble recoveries (five). David did fail to log an interception for only the second time in his career, but he projects to once again serve as an above-average IDP option in Smith's aggressive system in 2018.
One of several Buccaneers players to exit Monday's 24-21 loss to the Falcons due to injury, Evans looks like he could be dealing with more than a minor ankle issue. With the Buccaneers out of playoff contention, there's little for the team to gain by running its starting safety out for the final two contests of the season at less than full health. If Evans is in fact shut down, Chris Conte and Keith Tandy could pick up more snaps in the secondary.
Trattou backs up Everson Griffin at right defensive end and the Vikings will be without needed depth. Depth is more of an issue than usual with the game being played at high altitude.
Alexander made a solid first impression in his initial all-star appearance, co-leading the NFC squad in tackles with the Falcons' Deion Jones. The third-year linebacker overcame an early-season hamstring injury to still average just over eight tackles per contest for the Bucs in 2017, and he also racked up a career-high three interceptions. Given his considerable talent, youth and stat-friendly middle linebacker role, Sunday's Pro Bowl was likely the first of many for the 23-year-old.
Knox, who played with the CFL's Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2017, attended training camp with the Buccaneers last season before being cut loose once the preseason concluded. His prior experience with the organization should help his case for sticking with the Buccaneers during the 2018 campaign, though Knox would likely be limited to a depth role at linebacker if he were to secure a roster spot.
Despite Winston being partially at fault for the wreck, a punishment from the NFL is not expected and he was uninjured. The 24-year-old will head into the 2018 season on the last remaining year of his contract.
A November pickup by the Bucs last season, Siliga brought some additional size to the team's defensive line last season. However, he saw limited action over six games with the club, notching just five tackles (three solo) and one sack. He will likely return to a similar role with Tampa Bay in 2017.
Lucien spent time on three different practice squads in 2017, but finished the season with Tampa Bay and will enter the team's offseason program. The 2016 seventh-round pick has yet to make his NFL debut.
Evans was far from efficient with his targets, but he managed to still reach a memorable milestone in the season-ending victory. Per Jenna Laine of ESPN.com, the former Aggie eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark for the fourth consecutive campaign to start his career with his Week 17 haul, joining Randy Moss and A.J. Green as the only players to accomplish the feat in NFL history. Evans got there by just two yards -- leaving him with his lowest tally of his four campaigns -- but he did manage to improve his YPC from 13.8 to 14.1 in 2017. The 2014 first-round pick's 13 targets were also a season high and marked his seventh game with double-digit looks on the season. Evans is on the books for nearly $13.3 million in salary in 2018 in what will be the final year of his rookie contract, and he'll undoubtedly once again serve as a pivotal component of the air attack.
Cross played through the injury all year and is expected to recover in time for offseason workouts this spring.
The Buccaneers must see a lot of promise in the rookie defensive end, as the team released veteran Darryl Tapp in order to make room for O'Connor on the roster. O'Connor spent the preseason with the Lions after being selected in the seventh round of April's draft. He could see some defensive snaps Sunday if starter Robert Ayers -- who continues to deal with a concussion -- is sidelined for the contest.
Smith was listed as questionable and has not missed a game this season, a streak that will continue through at least Week 15. The 24-year-old should take his starting spot at left tackle for the Buccaneers.
Harris will offer the Buccaneers a much-needed healthy option at linebacker with Lavonte David (hamstring) and Devante Bond (neck) uncertain to play Week 16 against the Panthers and Adarius Glanton (lower leg) hitting injured reserve. Despite the health issues at the position, it's not expected that Harris will be pressed into extended snaps on defense over the final two contests.
Benenoch exited earlier in the game with an ankle injury but was able to return, only to sustain the knee injury. Leonard Webster will take over at right tackle if Benenoch is unable to return again.
McDonald equaled the second-best sack total of his career despite also tallying the third-fewest stops of his eight seasons. However, considering the 31-year-old lost his starting defensive tackle job with the arrival of Chris Baker, his output was certainly respectable from an IDP perspective. McDonald will be an unrestricted free agent at the beginning of the new league year, with his solid four-year stint in Tampa (13.5 sacks in 44 games) and likely reasonable price to retain him making him a candidate for return.
Liedtke is expected to fully healed by the time offseason conditioning and OTAs begin, so he should be ready to battle for a roster spot with one-year remaining on his contract with Tampa Bay.
The FSU product didn't see any targets in the regular-season finale, and he finished his rookie campaign with more carries (three) than receptions (one). Wilson was active for three contests overall, spending the remainder of his season on the practice squad. On the books for a cost-effective $555,000 in 2018, he figures to have an opportunity to battle for a roster spot on the latter portion of the wideout depth chart in training camp and preseason.
Wester briefly engaged in a block before drifting into the left side of the end zone for an easy reception from Jameis Winston in the fourth quarter to bring the Buccaneers within a Patrick Murray extra point of a 21-21 tie. The second-year tackle remains a valued part of Tampa's offensive line rotation.
Martin looked like he might be the Buccaneers' long-term solution in the backfield after amassing 1,673 yards from scrimmage and seven touchdowns in 2015, netting him a five-year, $35.75 million contract extension the following spring. However, the 2012 first-round pick regressed badly thereafter, averaging less than three yards per carry in both of the past two seasons while missing time due to injury and an untimely four-game suspension, which delayed the start to his 2017 campaign. In cutting lose Martin, the Buccaneers will save $6.75 million against the cap in 2018 while absorbing no dead money. Martin's departure currently leaves Peyton Barber as the top candidate to start at running back in 2018, though there's a decent possibility the Buccaneers address the position through the draft or free agency in the coming months.
Jackson's Chevy Silverado was left abandoned at the scene of a crash on Christmas Eve, with police finding marijuana and hollow-point bullets in the vehicle. A spokesman for the Tampa Police Department said that because there weren't any witnesses or other evidence to place Jackson or another driver behind the wheel at the time of the crash, the case will become inactive. Jackson isn't set to face any discipline from the NFL or the Buccaneers and should be in store for a normal offseason after recording 50 catches for 668 yards and three touchdowns in 14 games during his first campaign in Tampa Bay.
Hargreaves has missed the Buccaneers' last five games with the right hamstring injury and wasn't progressing quickly enough for the team to be optimistic about his chances of playing in the final two contests of 2017. A first-round pick out of Florida in 2016, Hargreaves hasn't lived up to expectations during his two years in the league with just one interception in 25 career games. Hargreaves should enter the 2018 campaign at full strength, but he'll likely have to fight for a starting role at cornerback.
The addition of Gettis will restore some depth on the interior of the offensive line after J.R. Sweezy (lower leg) was placed on injured reserve. Look for Gettis to act as the primary backup to Joe Hawley at right guard for the Buccaneers' final two games of the season.
Ayers has accrued 31 tackles (20 solo) and just two sacks this season. The veteran defensive lineman will miss his fourth game of the season, and Ryan Russell will fill in for the time being.
Baker was a major disappointment for the Buccaneers upon signing a three-year, $15.75 million contract last March. Though the defensive lineman missed just one game, he finished with a half sack and 33 tackles, his lowest marks in both categories since 2013. Now on the wrong side of 30 years old and coming off a down season, Baker will likely have to settle for a short-term deal with another club this offseason in order to rebuild value.
The energetic LSU product beat the odds by not only participating in all of training camp following a November 2016 ACL tear while with the Tigers, but eventually securing a starting job to open the regular season. Beckwith opened the Week 2 opener against the Bears as the strong-side linebacker before shifting to the middle early in that contest when Kwon Alexander injured his hamstring. The 23-year-old remained at that spot until Alexander returned in Week 7, a development that was marked by a notable drop in IDP production for Beckwith. While he compiled an impressive 41 tackles over his five games in Alexander's spot, Beckwith managed just 32 stops over the remaining 11 games. He did post a pair of five-tackle outings in Weeks 15 and 16, which represented a slight increase in productivity. Following a college career in which he generated a solid amount of impact plays (24.5 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, one interception, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries), overall expectations were likely higher for Beckwith, but a full offseason in the Buccaneers' system and several additional months of distance from his aforementioned knee injury leave him poised for a more productive sophomore campaign.
After an abbreviated outing Monday against the Falcons, Howard required a walking boot to keep his right ankle stable. Neither the team nor player has commented on the extent of the injury, but it's clearly severe enough to force a multi-game absence. Howard concludes his rookie campaign with 26 receptions (on 39 targets) for 432 yards and six touchdowns, the latter of which matches the Giants' Evan Engram for the league lead among rookies for receiving touchdowns through Week 15. In his stead, Tampa Bay likely will give Cameron Brate most of the reps at tight end, but Alan Cross and Antony Auclair may also be regulars in the rotation.
Glanton broke his leg in the season finale and likely won't be signed until he's fully recovered from his injury, which figures to be around April. Expect the linebacker to sign with Tampa Bay or another team once he's healthy.
Smith seemed to be trending in the right direction in his recovery from the concussion after logging a full practice Wednesday, and he apparently passed tests administered by an independent neurologist to get the green light for the Week 13 matchup. He'll likely rotate in at left guard with Kevin Pamphile during the contest.
Robinson only registered two snaps on defense all season as his main responsibilities came on special teams. Given his extremely limited role, the Central Florida product isn't on the IDP radar entering the 2018 campaign.
Johnson, who spent this past offseason in Tampa Bay, finished the 2017 campaign on the Buccaneers' practice squad. The Tennessee product will battle with Antony Auclair and Alan Cross for slotting on the bottom of the depth chart this offseason.
Gholston has never been much of a force as a pass-rusher -- since he generally is moved to the interior of the defensive line in obvious pass situations -- but this season he set a career low in the sack department as he didn't reach the quarterback a single time. While he fared much better in run support, the nature of Gholston's position doesn't typically lend itself to high tackle totals, leaving him far off the IDP radar heading into the 2018 campaign.
Dotson was able to fight through the knee injury and stay in the game Sunday, but follow-up scans prompted the Buccaneers to shut the lineman down for the season. The 32-year-old Dotson had been enjoying a solid campaign despite playing through a hamstring injury prior to hurting his knee. Caleb Benenoch and Kevin Pamphile are the top candidates to fill in at right tackle over the Buccaneers' final five games.
With DeSean Jackson (ankle) missing a second consecutive contest, Humphries had more of a downfield role once again, as he notched a season-high 43-yard reception. His overall receiving yardage total was a career best as well and enabled Humphries to finish 2017 having upped his tally in that category in each of the last three contests. The Clemson product improved his reception (61) and yardage (631) totals over those of his previous season once again in 2017, and given his value as a trusted inside receiver, figures to be retained by the Bucs as a restricted free agent.
The rookie set new career highs in receptions and receiving yardage, and his 39-yard touchdown with nine seconds remaining snapped a 24-24 tie. The score ultimately proved to be the game winner, putting an exclamation point on a rookie season that consistently trended upward in its latter portion. The 21-year-old saw scant opportunity during the early part of the campaign, but he was able to rack up 26 receptions for 442 yards (17.0 YPC) and Sunday's touchdown over his last eight games, a stretch that began with his first career start in Week 10. Having compiled 209 receiving yards over the final pair of contests of 2017, Godwin will head into the offseason with designs on a move up the depth chart.
The 23-year-old Barber is technically an exclusive-rights free agent this offseason, but it's fully expected he'll be retained in 2018. Barber established career bests across the stat sheet in his second season and already displaced Martin as the top backfield option for the final five games. Despite poor blocking in front on him, Barber often proved adept at finding space while Martin failed to do so, demonstrating the power and efficiency befitting of a lead back by averaging between 4.1 and 4.8 yards per carry in five of the seven games in which he logged double-digit totes. Having incurred low mileage over his first pair of pro seasons, Barber will be poised to challenge for the role of No. 1 back alongside Jacquizz Rodgers and potential additions via the draft or free agency.
The 28-year-old has yet to see action in a regular-season game over five seasons in the NFL. Griffin completed just four of nine passes for 57 yards with one interception last preseason before suffering a shoulder injury against the Bengals in the exhibition opener, which led to him being placed on injured reserve until a Nov. 7 activation. When Winston missed three full games and a portion of another with a shoulder injury of his own, Griffin was just a Fitzpatrick injury away from seeing snaps, but that never came to fruition. However, he could find himself as the primary backup to Winston in 2018, as Griffin is on the books for a reasonable $1.1 million, while Fitzpatrick will become an unrestricted free agent in March and is uncertain to be retained.
The second-year defensive back had shaken off the ankle injury that had cost him the Week 16 loss to the Panthers early in the practice week, and he looked to be at full health Sunday while posting at least five stops for the fifth time over his final six games of the season. Smith worked his way into the starting lineup beginning in Week 8 due to injuries to Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves (hamstring), and while he ended up acquitting himself particularly well in the tackle department, he wasn't able to get his hands on many passes. Smith finished with just two defensed passes over his last eight contests, and he's still in search of his first career interception after 29 games. The 24-year-old remains under team control for two more seasons under his rookie contract, and he could vie for a starting role if the team decides not to re-sign Grimes.
Because of Friday's doubtful designation this isn't much of a surprise, and it won't shake up the Bucs' defensive dynamic since he has just 14 tackles (12 solo) through 14 games.
Murray finished off the season in solid fashion, and despite a handful of late-season hiccups, he essentially solved the Buccaneers' kicking woes once he debuted in Week 6. The four-year pro finished 19-for-23 (82.6 percent) on field goals, coming just shy of the 83.3 percent figure he'd posted in his first Tampa stint back in 2014. Murray only missed one field goal under 49 yards, but nailed just 40 percent of his five tries from 50 and beyond. His missed PAT in Week 17 was his first of the season, so he did bring a considerable degree of stability to the position. Heading into the offseason as an exclusive-rights free agent, Murray seems like a sure bet to be tendered a qualifying offer and open 2018 training camp as the presumed starter.
The five-year pro saw even less action on the ground than usual in 2017 despite Martin enduring suspension, injury, and ultimately, a benching. Sims received a career-low 21 carries, although he did post the second-best reception (35) and receiving yardage (249) totals of his career. Given that he's never logged more than 107 carries at the pro level, it's unclear whether any potential suitor sees Sims as a true all-around back. That -- along with Martin's release -- makes a return to the Bucs at least plausible, although given his prior usage, the likelihood is that it would be for the purpose of reprising his familiar pass-catching back role.
Clarke now has nine tackles and three sacks in 11 games this season. His 34 defensive reps were a new season-high. Look for the veteran defensive end to continue to split reps with William Gholston on Sunday when the Buccaneers face the Lions.
The Buccaneers played without All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (biceps) in Monday's 24-21 loss to the Falcons and lost defensive end Robert Ayers (neck/shoulder) midway through the contest, so the addition of Ward gives the team a fresh body along the line. Even if both McCoy and Ayers are sidelined for the Bucs' final two games of the season, don't expect Ward to be a major factor in the team's line rotation.
The veteran back finished the 2017 campaign with just 73 total touches from scrimmage, a notably modest workload considering he'd been the de facto lead back for the first three games of the season while Martin finished serving a PED suspension. Rodgers had logged a career-high 129 carries in his first Bucs season in 2016 while filling in as the backfield workhorse for multiple contests in the wake of a Martin hamstring injury. With a reasonable $1.6 million cap hit in 2018 and plenty of versatility, Rodgers projects as a candidate to compete with Peyton Barber for the top running back spot, although the team is highly likely to bring in multiple reinforcements at the position through free agency and/or April's draft.
The Buccaneers will sport a retooled offensive line Sunday against the Packers, as Marpet, the team's starting center, will be joined on IR by right tackle Demar Dotson after both players suffered season-ending injuries in the Week 12 loss to the Falcons. Marpet, who had consistently graded out as the Bucs' top offensive lineman this season after making the transition from guard, will likely be replaced in the lineup by Joe Hawley, the team's primary center the past two years.
Fitzpatrick, who turned 35 years old in November, was serviceable in his six games (three starts) with the Buccaneers in 2017, completing 58.9 percent of his passes for 1,103 yards, seven touchdowns and three interceptions. The Buccaneers' decision to retain head coach Dirk Koetter should improve Fitzpatrick's chances of returning to Tampa Bay in 2018 as the backup to Jameis Winston, who is still viewed as the team's franchise signal caller despite his failure to take a dramatic leap forward in his third NFL season.
Johnson has been on the Rams' practice squad since the end of training camp, but did spend some time on the team's 53-man roster in 2016. The 25-year-old will likely serve as a depth option in the secondary and as a special teams contributor.
The Laval University (Canada) product beat the odds to make the 53-man roster coming out of preseason, but he didn't enjoy active status until Week 5. Auclair went on to notch his first career reception against the Packers in Week 13, and he played an expanded role in terms of snaps over the last two weeks of the season with O.J. Howard (IR-ankle) sidelined. The 24-year-old flashed the ability to get downfield during training camp and preseason, with his 6-foot-5, 250-pound frame enabling him to create potential matchup problems against certain linebackers and safeties. Auclair will head into OTAs looking to make further inroads in terms of playing time, but with Cameron Brate and Howard ahead of him on the depth chart, that figures to be an uphill battle, at least for the time being.
The veteran center has been struggling with an illness since last week and missed the Week 13 overtime loss to the Packers as a result. Hawley is slated to handle starting center duties for the balance of the campaign when healthy now that Ali Marpet (knee) is on injured reserve. Further information on his status should be available on the final injury report of the week Friday afternoon.
Lampman ended the year on Tampa's practice squad but hasn't appeared in a game since 2016, when he was exclusively a special-teams player for the Saints. The Ferris State product will look to carve out a similar role with the Buccaneers this offseason.
Elliott is more of a special-teams player, but injuries to the Buccaneers' secondary forced him into extensive action as a nickel corner during some games. However, when he did see playing time, he didn't come close to producing at a clip that could draw appeal in IDP circles. Now an exclusive-rights free agent at the end of the league year, Elliott isn't guaranteed to return to Tampa Bay in 2018.
The rotational defensive end finished the season on a high note, notching a sack in each of his last two contests despite fighting through a shoulder injury. The 25-year-old Russell also logged at least one tackle in each of his last six games, and he posted career bests in total stops (17), solo tackles (13) and sacks (2.0) in 2017. An impending restricted free agent, it's likely the Buccaneers extend Russell a qualifying offer at the minimum tender given his potential (24.5 tackles for loss, including 9.5 sacks, in four college campaigns) and solid showing over limited snaps this past season.
Lambert dislocated his wrist in Saturday's exhibition. He's unlikely to come off IR until season's end, barring an injury settlement.
McClain, playing on a one-year deal with Tampa Bay, logged the second-most snaps among Buccaneers cornerbacks and ultimately finished tops in tackles at the position. However, he never proved to be much of an IDP asset and, from a real-life perspective, graded out as Pro Football Focus' 98th-highest graded corner. The UConn product will now be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the league year.
The 26-year-old speedster closed out the season with at least one reception in each of his last four games, with DeSean Jackson's ankle injury in particular opening up some additional opportunity in Weeks 16 and 17. Martino had two stints apiece on the Buccaneers' practice squad and active roster in 2017, finishing the season with five receptions (on six targets) for 96 yards (career-high 19.2 YPC) over eight contests. He's on the books for a $705,000 salary in 2018, so despite his history with head coach Dirk Koetter, he'll likely need a strong training camp and preseason to beat out less expensive options the team is likely to add in the offseason and the draft.
The Buccaneers poached Rivers from the Dolphins' practice squad to add depth in the secondary after cornerback Vernon Hargreaves (hamstring) and safety Justin Evans (ankle) were placed on injured reserve. It's expected that the undrafted rookie out of Youngstown State will see most of his action on special teams -- if he plays at all -- in the Buccaneers' final two games.
The 34-year-old's numbers were certainly on par with his recent seasons, especially when extrapolated over 16 games. Grimes showed he could still get his hands on the ball on a consistent basis, and the Buccaneers' pass defense, which ranked last in both total passing yards (4,169) and passing yards per game (261) allowed, tangibly missed his presence when he was sidelined for three games due to injury. Still playing at a reasonably high level despite being 11 seasons into his career, Grimes heads into unrestricted free agency with a chance to secure a starting job, or at worst, a nickel corner role, in Tampa or elsewhere in 2018.
Fleming was with the team in training camp and recorded two tackles in the second preseason contest against the Jaguars. The rookie posted 78 tackles (63 solo), one interception, 15 passes defensed, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery over 27 college games. Fellow corner David Rivers was released from the practice squad to make room for Fleming.
Tu'iklolovatu damaged the MCL and meniscus in his right knee. Fortunately, he should be able to return in time for the 2018 campaign.
The 29-year-old defensive stalwart finished the season with seven total tackles (four solo), including a sack, over the last two contests despite dealing with a partly-torn biceps. With 47 total stops this season, McCoy came just shy of the career-high 50 he posted over 16 games in 2013. However, he did see his sacks drop for the second consecutive season, although the six he compiled were still undeniably impressive for an interior lineman. McCoy remains under team control through the 2021 season and figures to once again serve as the defensive line's linchpin in 2018.
With Folk set to become an unrestricted free agent March 14 and the Buccaneers having no intention of re-signing him, Tampa Bay likely chose to cut the kicker loose so he could get an early start on finding work. The 33-year-old won the Buccaneers' kicking job in training camp last fall but held onto the role for only four games after missing seven kicks (five field goals, two extra points) on only 20 attempts. Rather than releasing him in favor of replacement Patrick Murray, the Buccaneers shifted Folk to injured reserve while he dealt with a minor knee injury that he's since recovered from. Given his underwhelming accuracy in recent years, Folk may only be signed as camp competition rather than as a team's top choice to win the kicking gig.
The Buccaneers' offensive line was already one of the NFL's weaker units, so the loss of Sweezy may only further hurt the team's pass-protection and run-blocking efforts. Joe Hawley will likely serve as Sweezy's primary replacement at right guard over the Buccaneers' final two games of the season.
The veteran safety's tackle total was the third-highest of his career, while the trio of forced fumbles was a personal best. Conte extended a career-long streak of notching at least one interception a season to seven campaigns as well, but he was also a pivotal part of a Buccaneers secondary that surrendered the most total passing yards (4,169) and yards per game (261) in 2017. On the books for a reasonable $2.25 million in 2018, Conte is a likely candidate to return, although the emergence of 2017 second-round pick Justin Evans and the likelihood that the team looks to upgrade the position overall in both free agency and the draft could certainly leave Conte with an uphill battle for playing time.
Brate finished an up-and-down 2017 campaign in relatively modest fashion, posting three receptions for the second straight week. The 26-year-old went through a forgettable six-game stretch during Weeks 9-14 in which he posted a modest seven receptions for 87 yards and two touchdowns. He bounced back to bring in 10 of 14 targets for 99 yards in the final three contests of the season, as he clearly seemed to enjoy a better rapport with Jameis Winston than he did with backup Ryan Fitzpatrick. In the first half of the campaign, Brate essentially provided the same caliber of production as he had during his breakout 2016, as first-round pick O.J. Howard surprisingly was utilized much more as a blocker and receiver. However, Howard did start coming on as a consistent downfield threat in the latter portion of the season before succumbing to an ankle injury in Week 15, so it remains to be seen what effect his presence will have on Brate's targets from the onset of the 2018 season.
Tandy turned in limited practices all week, but his progress wasn't sufficient to allow him to suit up Sunday. He'll thus miss his second consecutive contest, meaning either T.J. Ward (hip) -- who's questionable in his own right -- or 2017 second-round pick Justin Evans will man the free safety spot opposite Chris Conte.
Ward posted bond and was released from jail shortly after his arrest, but he'll likely have to report to court at some point in the months to come and could face discipline from the NFL. A three-time Pro Bowler from 2013 through 2015, Ward has seen his effectiveness wane the past two seasons and was forced to settle for a part-time role with the Buccaneers in 2017. Ward, who sustained what is believed to be a minor knee injury in the Buccaneers' season finale Sunday against the Saints, will become a free agent this offseason.