Tampa Bay is looking to upgrade its middle linebacker position after placing two players — Antoine Cash and Sam Olajubutu – on injured reserve earlier in the week, and the Buccaneers could find what they’re looking for as soon as Thursday.

PewterReport.com has learned that former Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Jeremiah Trotter is scheduled to visit with the Buccaneers on Thursday.

The 6-foot-1, 262-pound Trotter, who was released by the Eagles on Tuesday, will meet with the Bucs and undergo a physical with the team at One Buccaneer Place.

A four-time Pro Bowler, Trotter originally entered the NFL with the Eagles as a third-round draft pick in 1998. With the exception of the 2002-03 seasons, when he played with the Washington Redskins, Trotter had spent his entire career in Philadelphia before his release on Tuesday.

Trotter, 30, recorded 940 tackles, nine interceptions, 12.5 sacks and nine forced fumbles during his tenure with the Eagles.

Tampa Bay released MLB Shelton Quarles during the offseason after he failed a team physical. Quarles, who turns 36 next month, had been the Bucs’ starting middle linebacker since the 2002 season. The Bucs hired Quarles to serve as a pro scout in August.

In 2005, the Bucs invested a second-round draft pick in LB Barrett Ruud, who is the team’s projected starting middle linebacker. However, the Bucs lost some depth at the Mike ‘backer position when Cash suffered a season-ending knee injury last Saturday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Tampa Bay moved strongside linebacker Ryan Nece to middle linebacker in training camp. However, Nece is still working on making the transition and adjusting to the position, which is why the Bucs are interested in signing Trotter.

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