The Buccaneers never replaced Cameron Kinley on their 90-player roster, even after his bid to delay his Navy commission in order to play football was denied last month. Kinley will get his roster spot back along with a chance to make the team after Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin granted Kinley the opportunity to pursue his football career.
Kinley released a statement on social media Tuesday afternoon:
“Today I was informed the Secretary of Defense will be allowing me to continue my journey with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and attend training camp at the end of this month. I am extremely appreciative of Secretary Austin’s decision and I am excited to represent our fine military in the National Football League. This past month has been very challenging and I am thankful for everyone who has supported me in any way.
“Sometimes in life God tells us to be still. We do not always understand what He is trying to show us, but He always has an ultimate plan. The most valuable lesson I’ve learned throughout this whole process is to trust His timing and remain confident in the fact that God will always prevail.
“Thank you to my village for standing beside me. Without my family and close friends, there is no way I would be where I am today.
“I would like to give a special thanks to my agency, Divine Sports & Entertainment for their tireless efforts to work through this situation. Not only have they done a great job representing me, but Michael De Sane and Ryan Williams-Jenkins made sure to check on me and ensure I was keeping my head up.
“I would also like to say thank you to DeMaurice Smith, Joe Briggs and the NFLPA, the NFL league office, Senator Marco Rubio, Representative John Garamendi, Representative Austin Scott, Omega Psi Phil Fraternity, Inc., various USNA alumni, and the many others for their efforts. Also, I’d like to extend my gratitude to all the media outlets who reached out to help share my story.
“Lastly, thank you to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers organization for believing in me and remaining patient with me throughout this process. I am excited to get back to work in Tampa Bay with my teammates.”
Kinley played 27 games at Navy, making 88 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, a sack, an interception, and a forced fumble. He signed with the Bucs after going undrafted and took part in their offseason program.