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Buccaneers sign Dane Fletcher

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It’s Purim, but the Buccaneers aren’t letting that get in the way of signing free agents.

The team announced that they have signed linebacker Dane Fletcher. Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports that it is a one-year deal.

Stroud adds that the Bucs agreed to the deal with Fletcher while he was in the Salt Lake City airport waiting for a connecting flight to visit with the Raiders. Fletcher instead got on a plane to head to Tampa.

Fletcher was a core special teams player for the Patriots over the last three seasons and made six starts on defense as well. The Bucs have Lavonte David and Mason Foster at two linebacker spots, but have lost Dekoda Watson and Adam Hayward in free agency. Fletcher and the re-signed Jonathan Casillas are the likeliest contenders for the other starting linebacker job.

The Buccaneers also added guard Oniel Cousins to their free agent haul on Sunday.

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20 Responses to “Buccaneers sign Dane Fletcher”
  1. hellogoodbye3005 says: Mar 16, 2014 4:10 PM

    Super Bowl.

  2. thegregwitul says: Mar 16, 2014 4:13 PM

    Another nice pickup for the Bucs. They’ve landed several quality players since shedding the bloated Revis contract, and that took some guts to make a move like that and not be held hostage by a $16 million dollar per season cap figure. Couple that with the exit of Greg Schiano, and the Bucs should be a solid team this coming season.

  3. kylecleric says: Mar 16, 2014 4:13 PM

    What would Purim have to do with signing players?

  4. aagro12 says: Mar 16, 2014 4:13 PM

    The scent (stench) of Schiano is fading quickly. While not a major signing, Lovie and crew are doing a fantastic job of changing the culture in Tampa.

    You can’t win a SB in March, but you can darn sure take yourself outta the conversation. Lovie and crew are keeping the Bucs relevant in the NFCS

  5. grogansheroes says: Mar 16, 2014 4:21 PM

    Take that Bill Belichick!!

  6. jjfootball says: Mar 16, 2014 4:22 PM

    Wanna be Raiders!

  7. piratefreedom says: Mar 16, 2014 4:30 PM

    Was a good player for the Pats.
    Not just a good special teams guy, when Mayo was out and Collins was still learning he was as close as the Pats had to a decent coverage linebacker.
    The kind of good value depth guy every team needs.

  8. canadianbucsfan says: Mar 16, 2014 4:36 PM

    After seeing a bad signing with Oniel Cousins, I am happy to see my bucs lock up Fletcher. A special teams ace is always good to have. Seems like he’s a capable back up also. Good move.

  9. themackstrong says: Mar 16, 2014 4:39 PM

    The major media outlets are talking up Broncos and Pats free agency. I don’t think a team is having a better one that Tampa Bay.

  10. doubleogator says: Mar 16, 2014 4:46 PM

    Now all they need is a head coach…

  11. radrntn says: Mar 16, 2014 4:49 PM

    they knew if he was going to Oakland, he would have never left there without a contract. Personally, I would much rather have Rob Jackson over Fletcher.

    Go Raiders, Go Reggie. (make the call to Melton’s agent!)

  12. j0esixpack says: Mar 16, 2014 5:00 PM

    Great depth player. Quality move.

    I don’t think Belichick didn’t want him back – he’s valued as a backup and special teamer

    Belichick just prefers to have guys with more upside than Fletcher in those roles and no doubt a team like Tampa will pay a premium for him

    A fresh start for Fletcher makes sense and could pay off for both him and the Bucs

  13. Andy says: Mar 16, 2014 5:02 PM

    Montana State!

  14. coloneldukelacross says: Mar 16, 2014 5:34 PM

    A signing on Purim? What’s not to like?

  15. revren10 says: Mar 16, 2014 5:48 PM

    He was a good player for the patriots, hopefully he gets a chance to start high quality guy

  16. surfinbird1 says: Mar 16, 2014 6:42 PM

    Good pickup for the Bucs. Great kid who deserves a shot at starting.

  17. spoilerfutbol says: Mar 16, 2014 7:42 PM

    Good sign by the Bucs, special teams, good covering, he can play OLB, MLB, even played some snaps as nose tackle when Tommy Kelly was injured, the best for him, he gave all in my Pats.

  18. luz56 says: Mar 16, 2014 8:21 PM

    TB, Cleveland, Denver, AZ have had outstanding FA pick ups… Not too sure about the mindset in Carolina and KC

  19. TheWizard says: Mar 16, 2014 9:08 PM

    Belichick just prefers to have guys with more upside than Fletcher in those roles

    I think also they can draft what will be the same player for less money than they would have had to pay Fletcher to return.

    Bill probably has a 5th round linebacker in mind already.

  20. cliverush says: Mar 17, 2014 11:25 AM

    This player is a good team guy with excellent lateral movement but lacks the strength to seal the run. He has been sidelined with injuries numerous times. Good luck in Tampa and stay healthy.

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