Willie Anderson bound for Baltimore
We told you this morning Pro Bowl OT Willie Anderson was considering the Bucs as one of three teams interested in signing the free agent.
The Bucs never got that far. Anderson's agent, Terry Bolar, told us this evening his client decided against making a visit to Tampa in an effort to avoid leading the Bucs on. He'll sign with the Ravens on Friday.
As the day began to unfold, it became more clear that things weren't going to work out in Tampa, Bolar said. The reason wasn't necessarily about money in this case, though I'm not prepared to say the Bucs were offering anything in the same neighborhood as the Ravens. Bolar said Baltimore will pay Anderson $3.5-million this season with the whole three-year deal reportedly worth $11-million.
The issue centered more on the Bucs' ability to accomodate Anderson's wishes to compete for a starting job. The Bucs just couldn't honestly say Anderson would get on the field here as they have Jeremy Trueblood firmly entrenched as their right tackle. Anderson likely will start this season for the Ravens. So, in an effort to be upfront about the situation, Bolar said his client canceled the trip to Tampa because it was pretty clear Baltimore was the better option.