The free agency front has been fairly quiet in Tampa Bay, but the Buccaneers could be adding former Seahawk Leon Washington to bolster their special teams. While not the splash fans are expecting, the move could greatly improve one facet of the Buccaneers in 2013.
The Buccaneers special teams were anemic at times last season, particularly the return game. Special teams coach Bob Ligashesky was a casualty of the poor performance, and fired in late January, replaced by former NFL head coach Dave Wannstedt.
With most fans focused on who the Buccaneers will bring in to shore up their secondary and improve the defense, the return game hasn’t been discussed or on many peoples minds for the most part over the last few days.
But that could be changing.
Former Jets and Seahawks running back/kick returner Leon Washington was released by Seattle on Tuesday after the Seahawks acquired Percy Harvin in a blockbuster trade with the Vikings.
Tuesday morning on SiriusXM NFL Radio, Washington said the Buccaneers actually attempted to trade for him but he was released by Seattle instead. If Washington is correct then the Buccaneers could be in play for the talented former Seminole who has eight-career kickoff return touchdowns.
Seattle general manager John Schneider talked about Washington on Tuesday.
“He did a phenomenal job here,” general manager Schneider. “He’s such a pro; he handled it with great class when Pete (Carroll) and I sat down with him and told him what we’re doing. We’re going to miss him.”
Washington, 30, was third in the NFL in kickoff returns in 2012, averaging 29.0 yards per return and was selected to the Pro Bowl. Along with kickoffs, Washington also retuned 41 punts, averaging 8.9 yards per return with a long of 52 yards.
For his career the versatile Washington has rushed for 2,213 yards (4.6 avg.) while adding 1,147 yards receiving.
Where Washington has really excelled is in the return game where he holds the NFL record (tied with Josh Cribbs) with the most career kickoff returns touchdowns (8).
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