TAMPA — A year after the Bucs claimed five players waived in NFL cutdowns, Sunday was a comparatively quiet day for Tampa Bay, which claimed no players. The Bills grabbed rookie tight end Danny Vitale, a sixth-round Bucs draft pick who had been cut Friday.
And as the Bucs worked to fill their 10-man practice squad, they picked up a promising receiver from the Ravens in Sarasota's Jeremy Butler, who cited quarterback Jameis Winston as one of the reasons he chose the Bucs over staying in Baltimore.
"Most of all, the quarterback. A young quarterback with a big chance to be a great quarterback for years to come," Butler said. "It's a chance to grow with somebody, an opportunity to get on the field. I've been watching him since college. He's a winner, and that's the most important piece."
Butler, 25, caught 31 passes for 363 yards in Baltimore's last eight games last season. He finished second in the NFL in the preseason with 16 catches, including two touchdowns, but was among the Ravens' cuts, to his disappointment.
"I expected to be on the team, but it's something I can't dwell on," he said. "I have to move forward. I look at it as an opportunity for another door to open."
The Bucs also brought back nine players who were among their final cuts to the practice squad: running backs Peyton Barber and Russell Hansbrough, wide receiver Freddie Martino, offensive linemen Ben Gottschalk and Josh Allen, linebackers Josh Keyes and Micah Awe, cornerback Javien Elliott and safety Isaiah Johnson.
The Bucs practice this morning to begin preparations for Sunday's regular-season opener at Atlanta.