The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who are in search of a player who can add depth and size to their nose tackle position, might have found a player that fits the bill.
The Bucs brought in free agent defensive tackle Oliver Gibson for a workout Wednesday, PewterReport.com has learned.
Gibson, 32, is entering his 10th season in the NFL. The 6-foot-2, 315-pound nose tackle has notched 262 tackles and 17.5 sacks while playing four seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers (1995-1998) and five seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals (1999-2003). Gibson has started 57 of the 133 games he’s played in during his nine-year career.
Chartric Darby (6-0, 270), a fourth-year veteran, is Tampa Bay’s starting nose tackle, but the Bucs are interested in adding a nose tackle (one-technique player) with run-stuffing ability to their roster since Darby, who is athletic and has good speed, is regarded as undersized.
The Cincinnati Bengals ran right up the gut of Tampa Bay’s defensive line on the first two plays of Monday night’s preseason opener. Bengals running back Rudi Johnson rushed for 17 yards on his first two carries, eight and nine yards, respectively.
After Darby, the Bucs have two journeymen players at the nose tackle position in DeVone Claybrooks and Damian Gregory.
Darrell Russell (6-5, 330) was supposed to be the guy that added size to Tampa Bay’s defensive line, but the Bucs released him in June shortly after they were informed that he was going to be suspended for violating his probation with the NFL by testing positive for alcohol consumption. The Bucs were also interested in signing DT Dana Stubblefield, but the former Raider inked a one-year deal with the New England Patriots two weeks ago.
This isn’t the first time Gibson has been on Tampa Bay’s radar. The Bucs expressed interest in signing Gibson in March, but he decided to accept a contract from Buffalo instead. But with the Russell experiment not panning out and the Bills releasing the former Notre Dame standout on Aug. 15, Gibson has once again piqued the interest of the Bucs.
According to agent David Levine, Gibson’s workout at One Buccaneer Place went “great”, but a signing doesn’t appear to be imminent since Levine had not talked with the Bucs between the time Gibson’s workout ended and this story was published.
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