Friday, June 22, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Former Bills kicker Lindell gets fresh start with Bucs

TAMPA — Rian Lindell admitted Monday was a very odd day, getting cut by the Bills after being their longest-tenured player and most accurate kicker in franchise history.

Lindell, 36, said it wasn't a total surprise after the Bills selected Florida State K Dustin Hopkins in the sixth round. Still, he said he was a little down emotionally, not knowing how long he'd have to wait for another opportunity.

But Lindell is excited that two days later, he gets a fresh start with the Bucs, who on Wednesday signed him to a one-year deal to compete with rookie Derek Dimke.

"You don't back into these jobs," Lindell said. "Nothing is handed to you in the NFL in any position. There's no low-hanging fruit. You have to earn everything, so that's what I'm trying to do here."

With veteran Lawrence Tynes (toe) not having appeared in a preseason game, Bucs coach Greg Schiano wanted to take the load off of Dimke, who has been the primary kicker in practice and games.

"(Lindell) is an experienced guy, has been very, very effective in this league for a number of years," Schiano said. "We were wearing Derek out. I don't know where this is going to go exactly, but we're going to let it play out and make some decisions here in the next two weeks."

Lindell loved his 10 years in Buffalo, where he fell 32 points shy of Steve Christie's franchise record. He credited Hopkins for kicking well in beating him out, but he's still confident in his abilities, including from 50 yards and beyond.

"I feel like I'm in great shape and hit the ball well," said Lindell, whose 13-year career includes three in Seattle.

Lindell hopes he will get a chance Saturday at Miami. But while Dimke, undrafted out of Illinois in 2012 and 5-of-5 on field goals during the preseason, hasn't played in a regular-season game, Schiano said he would feel comfortable giving him the job.

"If that's what's best for our team, yes," Schiano said. "Last year, (Kai Forbath) had a tremendous camp, and he went on to kick for (the Redskins). We had our guy (Connor Barth), though. Everybody has to be a rookie at one point."

REVIS WATCH: Encouraging signs continue with Bucs star CB Darrelle Revis, who increased his workload in practice Wednesday for the third straight day.

Revis, who said he took a huge step Monday in working with the first team for full-speed team drills, looked impressive, Schiano said.

"So far, so good," Schiano said.

The fact Revis has practiced three straight days without a day off is a positive sign his surgically repaired left knee isn't swelling. But that Revis has continued to do more, whether in reps or intensity, shows he's making progress toward the Bucs' goal of him being ready for Week 1 against the Jets, his former team.

Schiano said one reason Revis is getting better is he's taking a day-by-day approach and working "incredibly hard and smart." He said no decision has been made on if Revis will play Saturday.

"I wouldn't say it has been elimi­nated," Schiano said. "But I'll just say that I don't need to see it."

STAYING PUT: With LG Carl Nicks still out with an infected blister on his left toe, it seems as though C Jeremy Zuttah is one candidate to slide into his spot.

After all, Zuttah has 39 starts at left guard, including taking over for an injured Nicks last year in Week 9. But Zuttah said he has not taken any reps there during practice.

"I've done it before," he said of switching positions. "But I'd like to stay at center."

Joe Smith can be reached at joesmith @tampabay.com. Follow him on Twitter at TBTimes_JSmith.

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