Bucs claim former Browns punter Lanning off waivers

Published June 10, 2015

TAMPA — Continuing to use their position first in line for waiver pickups, the Bucs on Tuesday claimed punter Spencer Lanning, who was waived over the weekend by the Browns.

Lanning, 27, will compete with veteran Michael Koenen. Lanning, Cleveland's punter the last two years, was cut after the Browns dealt a 2017 seventh-round pick to the 49ers to acquire three-time Pro Bowl punter Andy Lee.

The Bucs also announced they waived punter Andy Wilder, who signed in March as an undrafted free agent out of Northern Arizona.

Lanning averaged 44.3 yards per punt last season, 22nd in the NFL. His net average of 39.2 yards ranked 17th. The Bucs and Koenen ranked 32nd and 29th, respectively, in those categories. Lanning played collegiately at South Carolina. As a rookie in 2011 he went to camp with the Bears and now-Bucs coach Lovie Smith.

bucs HOLDOUT: Bucs tackle Demar Dotson's impasse over his contract will carry over to a second week. He will not attend this week's voluntary OTA workouts, which started Tuesday.

The Bucs withdrew a multiyear offer for a raise and extension to his existing contract, citing a policy of not negotiating with players while they are absent from team activities. If Dotson's absence extends to next week's three-day mandatory minicamp, he faces potential fines.

Dotson, who has started all but one game in the last three seasons, is unhappy with a three-year extension he signed in spring 2013, which will pay $2.5 million this season. Despite having two years left on that contract, the Bucs had been in negotiations for an extension, but those talks are tabled until he returns to the team.

Romo criticizes league: Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo isn't happy after a fantasy football convention he was heading next month in Las Vegas was canceled because of gambling concerns from the league. "The NFL could have handled it in far better ways and there would have been a lot of issues that could have been resolved with the venue change or just wanting to be part of it," Romo said.

Broncos: Receiver Demaryius Thomas and defensive end Antonio Smith were absent from mandatory minicamp. Thomas is boycotting the offseason program after getting a $12.8 million franchise tag. Smith was absent while prosecutors in Texas investigate a criminal complaint against him.

Cardinals: Quarterback Carson Palmer returned to full practice after a season-ending torn ACL suffered in November. He said he felt rusty but it was "just one of the many steps in a long road."

Jets: Defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, unhappy about his contract, reported for mandatory minicamp. "I'm frustrated, yeah," he said. "I thought that a deal would be made, but at the end of the day, it's a business. These things take time."

Rams: A proposed riverfront football stadium in St. Louis already has cost taxpayers $3 million, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, based on the latest invoices released this week from financing advisers, railroad track engineers, contract attorneys and management. Architectural firm HOK has billed more than $2.2 million, the stadium's design and construction manager has put in for more than $190,000 and attorneys nearly $260,000.

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Seahawks: Tarvaris Jackson, Russell Wilson's backup the past two seasons, re-signed, solidifying Seattle's uncertain backup quarterback situation. Terms weren't disclosed.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.