TAMPA — Mike Glennon said he received a call from coach Lovie Smith shortly after the Bucs signed Bears free agent QB Josh McCown last month.
"He just said, 'to start out, there's got to be a person to start that goes out with the first group first and that person is Josh,' " Glennon said.
After Glennon went 4-9 as a rookie and throwing 19 touchdowns and nine interceptions, the Bucs signed the top available free agent quarterback. While it looks as though he might be headed back to the bench, Glennon said Tuesday he plans to compete with McCown and could win the job.
"Lovie said to me and to the team the best players are going to play," Glennon said. "And I don't think that's any different for the quarterback position."
The Bucs signed McCown to a two-year, $10 million contract and could add a quarterback in the draft next month.
A third-round pick from North Carolina State last year, Glennon would've been the returning starter in 2014 had coach Greg Schiano not been fired after only two seasons.
"I think there were a lot of things I did good," Glennon said. "There's definitely some things I can work on but I think overall I played well for the situation at hand and something to really build on. Some things I have to work on? Just continuing to develop as an NFL quarterback and maybe make some better decisions here and there, work on my feet, work on throwing under pressure — all the things that all NFL quarterbacks are working on."
GAROPPOLO VISITS: Eastern Illinois QB Jimmy Garoppolo visited One Buc Place Tuesday.
Garoppolo is a possible first-round pick after impressive work at the East-West Shrine Game, Senior Bowl and NFL scouting combine. His visit came one day after the Bucs met with Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater at One Buc Place.
Garoppolo completed 66 percent of his passes (375 of 568) for 5,050 yards, 53 touchdowns and nine interceptions last season. A four-year starter, he broke Tony Romo's career school records for passing yards and touchdowns.
BARTH, MARTIN BACK: The Bucs missed two staples to their offense last season — PK Connor Barth, who tore his Achilles just prior to training camp, and RB Doug Martin, who suffered a torn labrum in his left shoulder in a Week 7 loss to Atlanta.
Both have been cleared for full activity this week.
"My buddy goes, "Please don't get hurt,' right before it happened,' said Barth, who was injured in a charity basketball game last July. "You see your life flash in front of you. … I think 15 years ago, yes, maybe my career would've been over. But with technology now and the way doctors can do the different surgeries. … Honestly, I think it's stronger than it's ever been."
Around the league
Lions: Detroit hosted Sammy Watkins on a predraft visit Tuesday, three weeks after GM Martin Mayhew and coach Jim Caldwell dined with the Clemson receiver. Watkins, considered the top pass catcher in a deep draft, told the Detroit Free Press he met Lions Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate during his visit. Watkins had 101 receptions for 1,464 yards for Clemson last season. The Lions would likely have to trade up from their No. 10 position to draft Watkins.
FALCONS: Veteran S Dwight Lowery and CB Josh Wilson signed. Terms were not disclosed. Lowery was with the Jaguars last season until sustaining a concussion and was released. Wilson started with all 16 games with the Redskins last season.
PANTHERS: Free agent DT Colin Cole will remain with the team after agreeing to a one-year contract. Terms were not disclosed. Cole started 13 games last season for Carolina.
Information from Times wires was used in this report.