Tampa Bay rolled the dice when it released rookie wide receiver/punt returner Mark Jones Sunday in hopes of re-signing him to the practice squad once he cleared waivers.

At first, that gamble appeared to pay off Monday when Jones, the Tampa Bay’s first of three 2004 seventh-round draft picks, appeared to clear waivers and was on his way to One Buccaneer Place to sign on to the Bucs’ practice squad.

However, Jones’ agent, Derek Spratley, learned a few minutes later that the New York Giants had came in at the last minute and claimed Jones off the waiver wire, which means the Bucs’ gamble didn’t pay off.

Jones caught two passes for 32 yards during preseason. He also fielded 11 punts for 67 yards (6.1 avg.) and two kickoff returns for 41 yards (20.5 avg.) while adding two special teams tackles. He will likely serve as New York’s primary punt returner.

Bucs seventh-round draft pick Lenny Williams, who was released in the first wave of roster cutdowns, has signed with Dallas’ practice squad, PewterReport.com has learned.

In related news, former Giants defensive end Isaac Hilton visited One Buc Place Monday and is expected to sign on to Tampa Bay’s practice squad as soon as he passes a physical.

PewterReport.com has also learned that the Bucs expressed interest in signing sixth-round draft pick tight end Nate Lawrie to their taxi squad, but he signed on to Philadelphia’s practice squad on Monday afternoon.

Be sure to check back with PewterReport.com throughout the day as we will be giving Bucs fans the latest news regarding Tampa Bay’s attempt to assemble its eight-man practice squad.

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