The Buccaneers have an open roster spot with defensive end Jacquies Smith heading to injured reserve and it appears they’ll fill it with a veteran running back whose first name sounds similar while being spelled differently.
According to multiple reports, the Buccaneers will sign Jacquizz Rodgers to their 53-man roster. Rodgers played for head coach Dirk Koetter when Koetter was the offensive coordinator of the Falcons from 2012-2014. Current Bucs defensive coordinator Mike Smith was Atlanta’s head coach at that time.
Rodgers was released by the Bears at the end of the summer and worked out for the team last week. The Buccaneers avoid having to guarantee his entire salary for the 2016 season by waiting to sign him until after Week One is in the books.
Rodgers had 14 carries for 41 yards in five games for the Bears last season. He was used heavily as a receiver under Koetter in 2012 and 2013, catching 105 passes over the course of those two seasons. He’ll join Doug Martin, Charles Sims and Peyton Barber in the Tampa backfield.
UPDATE 10:58 a.m. ET: The Bucs have announced Rodgers’ signing.