New Buccaneers assistant Alex Van Pelt gets down to work

MIAMI — Alex Van Pelt has been a part of the Bills organization as a player or coach for about 16 years. You don't have that kind of longevity with one team unless you have a great work ethic, according to Bucs offensive coordinator Greg Olson.

The Bucs officially announced Thursday that Van Pelt, 39, has been hired to work with first-round pick Josh Freeman and the team's other quarterbacks.

"I think his experience as a player is a plus," Olson said of Van Pelt. "He's coached and played under some impressive head coaches, starting with Paul Hackett at Pittsburgh. He played behind some good quarterbacks as a player, so he was able to see a lot. He's a very intelligent person.

"Obviously, the fact he was able to stay with the same organization, speaks volumes. In a backup role, you won't stay unless the staff is impressed with your work ethic."

Freeman arrived at One Buc Place on Thursday and met with Van Pelt, Olson said. He will provide a sounding board for Freeman as Olson concentrates on coordinating the offense.

"The important thing is to always have a set of eyes on the quarterback," Olson said. "That can be especially true with a young quarterback."

suit accuses irvin of rape: A woman who says she was raped by former NFL and University of Miami star Michael Irvin, 43, in 2007 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla. filed a civil lawsuit against him in Broward Circuit Court. Though no criminal charges have been filed, the Broward State Attorney's Office has been looking into the case and is expected to reach a conclusion next week, said spokesman Ron Ishoy. Irvin's lawyer, Larry Friedman, called the accusations "totally untrue."

L.T. expects to leave: LaDainian Tomlinson says he believes he has played his last game as a Charger. The running back, 30, told the San Diego Union-Tribune that he has thought for a while the team would let him go. He is due a $2 million roster bonus on March 5 and would be paid $5 million in total salary in 2010. The team did not comment.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

New Buccaneers assistant Alex Van Pelt gets down to work 02/04/10 [Last modified: Thursday, February 4, 2010 10:32pm]

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