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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Dunn coming home to Tampa



A week after his visit with the Bucs, one-time Tampa Bay draft pick Warrick Dunn has signed a two-year, $6-million deal with the club.

Dunn, 33, was released by the Falcons on March 2 after the team signed free agent back Michael Turner. Returning to Tampa was the best scenario for Dunn, his agent said.

"It feels like based on all the information we have, it's the best fit for Warrick," agent Jim Steiner said. "I think after talking to both Bruce Allen and Jon Gruden, that was clear."

Dunn did not make any other free agent visits, but Steiner said that was the player's choice.

"He could have, but we declined," Steiner said.

Dunn was a first-round pick of the Bucs in 1997 and played five seasons in Tampa Bay, accumulating 4,200 yards -- third-most in franchise history. He'll get a chance to add to that total in 2008 when he will attempt to pass Mike Alstott, who retired in January with 5,088 career yards, second most in franchise history.

The addition of Dunn reduces the importance of selecting a running back early in the draft as he joins Earnest Graham and Michael Bennett in a very experienced backfield. That should allow the Bucs to concentrate on adding receiver help, if they so choose, early in the draft.

This also likely spells the end of Michael Pittman's run in Tampa Bay, after the veteran elected to become a free agent after last season. Pittman remains unsigned.

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 2:58pm]


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