Tampa Bay has waived safety D.J. Swearinger and linebacker Orie Lemon, the team announced Tuesday.
Lemon, 28, initially signed onto the Buccaneers practice squad in October, 2014, playing in 10 games and making three starts when Tampa Bay was thin at linebacker late in the year. His most recent stint with the Bucs started in Week 2 this season when he was resigned to the practice squad and promoted to the active roster in Week 5. Since then, Lemon has been a special teams player, recording one tackle on kick coverage.
Bucs LB Kwon Alexander and SS DJ Swearinger – Photo by Cliff Welch/PR
For Swearinger, 24, this marks the latest setback in a career that started with so much promise. A second-round draft pick by the Texans in 2013, the South Carolina product was pegged as a hard-hitting safety with a high ceiling.
While things didn’t turn out in Houston, the Buccaneers still saw his release in May as an opportunity to steal a talented player off waivers and used their No. 1 spot to claim him. After turning some heads in training camp, Swearinger hasn’t made much of an impact since earning a spot on the active roster. In seven games, he’s recorded 11 tackles while contributing mainly on special teams.
This doesn’t necessarily mark the end of their careers in Tampa, however.
The team also announced it waived safety Akeem Davis and linebacker Quayshawn Nealy from the practice squad, leaving two spots open there as well. The moves – involving a safety and linebacker – seem to indicate that Tampa Bay hopes to sign Swearinger and Lemon to the practice squad if they clear waivers.
As for the active roster, the Bucs haven’t announced corresponding additions, though it’s expected the team will fill both spots before Wednesday’s practice. Considering the injuries at wide receiver (Vincent Jackson and Louis Murphy), defensive end (Jacquies Smith) and guard (Ali Marpet), it’s conceivable that they’ll look to find depth at those positions.
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
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