The Buccaneers haven't made the splash in free agency that some were expecting, but it's still early.
Tampa Bay general manager Mark Dominik and head coach Raheem Morris began working the phones at midnight, but it appears negotiations for defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, who agreed to a seven-year, $100 million contract with the Redskins this morning, consumed a great deal of their time.
Although neither Dominik nor Morris confirmed or denied this, PewterReport.com believes this to be true because in its contact with dozens of agents around the NFL, only a few of them have confirmed that the Bucs have contacted them regarding one or more of their clients. Many of the agents have told PewterReport.com that they have not heard from the Bucs yet.
Tampa Bay reportedly has expressed interest in New York Giants running back Derrick Ward, Pittsburgh wide receiver Nate Washington, Arizona defensive end Antonio Smith and New Orleans linebacker Jonathan Vilma. ProFootballTalk.com also reports that the Bucs have expressed an interest in Chicago running back Kevin Jones.
However, PewterReport.com is reporting that the Bucs are not interested in Ward at this time. It is not clear why Tampa Bay is not interested at this time in signing Ward, who is one of the best available free agent running backs and would fill a need at the position for the Bucs.
Some reports have suggested the Bucs, who have a league-high $62 million in salary cap room, are the leading candidates to land a few of these players, including Vilma. However, he is not scheduled to visit Tampa Bay as of right now.
PewterReport.com will continue to update Bucs fans on free agency news throughout the day and weekend. Be sure to check back often.