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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

New Tampa Bay Buccaneers punter Dirk Johnson gladly takes break from day job

13

August

The past few weeks, veteran free agent punter Dirk Johnson said he had been working on a promising business venture with an old college buddy from Northern Colorado, dealing with solar panels and "next generation energy."

But after getting called by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a tryout this morning (and eventually getting signed to help fill the void of injured Josh Bidwell), Johnson said he'll gladly "take a little break" from the business.

Jonson, a 34 year old journeyman, was recently released by the Steelers after spending the entire 2008 season with the Cardinals. He punted in 12 games for Arizona, averaging 41.8 yards with a 35.2 net avearge. Over the course of seven NFL seasons, and has punted for the Saints, Eagles, Bears and Cardinals, and has averaged 41.7 yards per punt. And Johnson, who will wear No. 8, said he also has experience holding, which he could do in Saturday's game.

"I just have to shake off a few cobwebs and get back into it," Johnson said.

Bucs coach Raheem Morris said the team had some backup plans at holder in case of emergencies, with players like safety Sabby Piscitelli able to step in.

- JOE SMITH

joesmith@sptimes.com

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 3:37pm]

    

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