The Buccaneers have been big-time players in free agency over the last seven days, but have also seen a handful of key contributors leave. The latest departure is fullback Erik Lorig who reportedly has signed a four-year deal with the New Orleans Saints.
Lorig was a defensive end at Stanford and converted to a fullback after joining the Buccaneers as a 2010 seventh-round draft pick in 2010. Lorig hasn’t had his hands on many balls during his four years in Tampa Bay, notching just 30 receptions for 193 yards and one touchdown.
But Lorig was an integral of running back Doug Martin’s rookie record-setting 2012 season, which saw the former Boise State star rush for 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns and also was part of the success the Buccaneers had with their revolving door of running backs in 2013 after Martin and backup Mike James went down with injuries.
Tampa Bay has just former FSU fullback Lonnie Pryor on their roster. Pryor spent the last six weeks of the season with Tampa Bay after being signed off of the Jaguars practice squad. Pryor was inactive for all six games in Tampa Bay.
In addition to Lorig, Tampa Bay has lost linebacker Adam Hayward and Dekoda Watson and guard Ted Larsen. Hayward joined the Redskins, Watson signed with the Jaguars and Larsen signed a free agent deal with the Cardinals last week.
In other free agency news, former USF cornerback Mike Jenkins, who visited the Buccaneers on Monday, is reportedly on his way for a meeting with the Cardinals.