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Bucs have contacted Cincinnati lineman

Published Oct. 10, 2005

Seeking stability at left guard, Tampa Bay coach Sam Wyche has initiated contact with Cincinnati Bengals lineman Bruce Reimers, a Plan B free agent.

Reimers, whose eight-year career coincided with Wyche's coaching tenure in Cincinnati, said Tuesday he has talked twice to Wyche and would listen to an offer from Tampa Bay.

"I can't lie to you. I've been contacted by Sam as far as their interest," said Reimers, 31. "I think a lot of Sam. I'd be willing to listen. I just don't want to put myself in a predicament by saying, "By God, I'm going to leave.' I have to be careful about this. I don't want to alienate the Bengals."

Reimers is one of several unprotected Bengals who have told new Cincinnati coach David Shula they intend to return next season. Reimers, who earned $275,000 in 1991, said he will receive $385,000 if he returns to Cincinnati for the option year of his four-year contract.

Left guard is the most pressing position on the Bucs' offensive line. Veterans Tom McHale (11 starts) and John Bruhin (five) split the job in 1991, but injuries and inconsistent play have surrounded the position the past three or four years.

"It hasn't gotten to the stage where (the Bucs) offered me any extraordinary amount of money," said Reimers, who missed seven games last season due to shoulder and knee injuries. "But I would think it would take a decent offer for me to leave. Something intriguing. Right now, they're feeling me out. Other teams have done the same thing."

Reimers, a 6-foot-7, 298-pounder, is noted for his run-blocking.

Wyche declined comment Tuesday on Reimers, saying he did not want to jeopardize any potential Plan B signings.

Bucs notes: Backup quarterback Jeff Carlson will fly to New York today to work out for the Giants.

Carlson, one of Tampa Bay's 16 unprotected Plan B players, is among four Bucs who agreed to stay with Tampa Bay throughout the two-month Plan B period. That agreement, Carlson said, does not preclude him from listening to offers from other teams.

Carlson also has a workout scheduled Monday in Phoenix, and Kansas City has contacted him, but a workout has not been scheduled.

Broncos: Quarterback John Elway has been scheduled for shoulder surgery Thursday. Elway has a bone spur in his throwing shoulder that has aggravated chronic tendinitis in his arm.

Packers: Green Bay traded one of its two first-round draft picks to Atlanta for quarterback Brett Favre, the Falcons' second-round pick in the 1991 draft. The Packers sent the 17th pick in the first round to Atlanta. Green Bay still has the No.5 selection overall.

Steelers: Quarterback Bubby Brister underwent arthroscopic surgery Tuesday to repair ligament damage to his right knee.

Protest: A group of American Indians is pushing legislation that would strip state funding from Arrowhead Stadium if the Kansas City Chiefs don't take steps to discourage fan behavior the group finds offensive. Among the group's dislikes is the "tomahawk chop," an arm gesture that has been adopted by thousands of Chiefs fans.

_ Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.