Bucs bring back Underwood to bolster WR corps
For the second year in a row, the Bucs have brought former Rutgers receiver Tiquan Underwood back on roster after cutting him in preseason, hoping to add a spark to the passing game.
Underwood, who was recruited by and played for Greg Schiano at Rutgers, was back at practice Wednesday, wearing his familiar No. 11 jersey. He caught 28 passes for 425 yards and two touchdowns in 14 games last season, this after totaling 11 receptions for 141 yards in his first three NFL seasons.
"I'm just trying to run with this opportunity. I'm happy to be back here playing football again and am just trying to pick up where I left off," said Underwood, who trained in California for the past month after being cut. "It's part of the business, and being in it five years, I understand that now. You just have to be ready when the call comes."
Underwood was signed and former Stanford receiver Chris Owusu was promoted from the practice squad on Tuesday as the Bucs cut veteran Kevin Ogletree, as well as safety Ahmad Black.
"We're looking for Ti to come in and play at a high level that we've seen him play at," Schiano said. "We're looking for (Owusu) to play well, also with (Eric) Page and (Russell) Shepard there as well. We need all the guys to bring their game and add to Vincent (Jackson) and Mike (Williiams)."
ONE MORE: The Bucs on Wednesday also added tight end Matt Veldman to the practice squad. Veldman, who has good size at 6-foot-7 and 255 pounds, played at I-AA power North Dakota State and spent last year on injured reserve with the Jaguars. He spent the preseason with the Lions and was among their final cuts. The Bucs are extremely limited at tight end, with Tom Crabtree still limited by an ankle injury and Luke Stocker and Nate Byham recently placed on injured reserve.
LONG WEEKEND: The Bucs will have four consecutive days with no practice, and Wednesday's opened with most starters working indoors while backups (and starting QB Mike Glennon) worked out on the field. Schiano said the players were all outside later in drills, including benched QB Josh Freeman. The team resumes normal game-week preparations Monday for next week's home game against Philadelphia.