Tampa Bay general manager Bruce Allen was looking to receive some salary cap relief from his players while spending the week in Indianapolis for the NFL Combine.
Allen got what he was looking for Monday when Bucs fullback Mike Alstott restructured his contract, signing a new two-year deal that reduced his 2005 salary to $1.5 million and includes no signing bonus.
Alstott’s previous deal, which he signed last summer, ran through the 2008 season and called for the “A-Train” to have a $2.893 million cap value this year.
The six-time Pro Bowler’s new deal, which essentially voids into a one-year deal after 2005, creates approximately $1.3 million in salary cap space, which the Bucs, who were $14 million over the league-mandated $85 million cap before Monday, could definitely use.
In return, Alstott, who preferred to play his 10th and final season in Tampa Bay, is guaranteed the opportunity to retire a Buccaneer in 2006.
Alstott, who entered the league in 1996 as a second-round pick out of Purdue, is Tampa Bay’s all-time leader in total touchdowns (61) and rushing touchdowns (49) and ranks second in franchise history with 4,837 rushing yards (3.8 avg.). He has also hauled in 259 passes for 1,977 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Despite reworking his contract in an effort to remain a Buc, Alstott’s role will likely be limited next season, just as it was in 2004 when the “A-Train” carried the ball just 67 times for 230 yards (3.4 avg.) and two touchdowns in 14 games (11 starts).
In addition to reworking Alstott’s deal, Allen restructured center John Wade’s contract Monday.
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Scott Reynolds is in his 23rd year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds enjoys giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]
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