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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Bucs consider Youboty's deal an 'opportunity contract'



When the Bucs signed free-agent cornerback Ashton Youboty today, it raised some questions about whether his acquisition was made purely for added depth or in reaction to the twin hamstring injuries being nursed by Aqib Talib and Myron Lewis.

Now, with a bit more information, things have become clearer.

The Bucs signed Youboty to a two-year contract that, according to two people with knowledge, contains no guaranteed money. A Bucs official described the deal as an "opportunity contract" that will allow Youboty to compete for a place on the active roster. If he does not make the team, the Bucs would not have any cap implications as a result of the structure of the contract. That gives the Bucs some flexibility if their younger cornerbacks prove to have the better preseason and Youboty doesn't pan out.

Youboty, 27, likely will compete with the likes of Lewis, Elbert Mack and Anthony Gaitor for a spot in the rotation of cornerbacks. Cornerback is a position at which there seemed to be a need for depth entering training camp, but the Bucs chose not to make a move until today.

Whether this move says something about the Bucs' comfort level with their current crop of cornerbacks is matter for debate.

[Last modified: Monday, August 15, 2011 3:38pm]


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