Tampa Bay fullback Mike Alstott made it known last month that he intended to play football again in 2007. The only question that remained was where?
That question was answered Thursday when the Buccaneers re-signed Alstott to a one-year contract worth $1.5 million.
Alstott, 33, has contemplated retirement for the past two offseasons, but his love and passion for the game of football keep him coming back.
"I'm excited to be returning for another year and to be playing in front of Buccaneer fans again," said Alstott. "I want to help this team win in 2007 and I'm ready to begin preparing for the season."
Arguably the most popular Buccaneer in franchise history, Alstott is Tampa Bay’s all-time leader in touchdowns (71), and rushing touchdowns (58). He also ranks second all-time in team history with 5,088 rushing yards and third in receptions with 305.
A six-time Pro Bowler and team captain, Alstott, who entered the league in 1996, played an integral role in helping to turn one of the losingest teams in NFL history into a playoff contender and Super Bowl champion. In fact, Alstott scored Tampa Bay’s first touchdown in Super Bowl XXXVII.
There was some question as to whether Tampa Bay was going to re-sign Alstott, even after he made his intentions of playing this season known. The “A-Train’s” role in head coach Jon Gruden’s offense has been limited in terms of carrying the football. He’s regarded more as a lead blocker and short-yardage back in Gruden’s offense,
Last season, Alstott carried the ball 60 times for 171 yards (2.9 avg.) and three touchdowns, and Tampa Bay’s ground game ranked 28th in the league.
The Bucs’ decision to re-sign Alstott for $1.5 million makes it unlikely that the team will sign a veteran fullback to a lucrative contract in free agency, which begins at 12:01 a.m. ET on Friday.
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