With the league changing the cut downs from 90 to 75 and then 75 to 53 to just one cut down date from 90 to 53 meaning that 37 players on every team (1184 players, although 320 will be put on practice squads) will be looking for jobs. Obviously with only one cut down date it makes a tougher decision for the coaches and GMs including Coach Koetter and Jason Licht, but it also gives them more time to evaluate fringe players.
Although Coach Koetter and GM Licht have some very tough decisions to make let’s just blow through the players that will obviously be making the Cut:
Quarterback: Jameis Winston
Tight Ends: Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard
Kicker: Nick Folk
Punter: Bryan Anger
Long Snapper: Garrison Sanborn
Total: 34 (+1 SUS status first 3 games)
Then after the obvious keepers we have the most likely to be kept category due to playing time and where they came in after the starters went out during the preseason, and also position they play likely makes them backups to all starters.
Wide Receivers: Bernard Reedy and Josh Huff (KR).
Tight Ends: Antony Auclair and Luke Stocker
Linebacker: Devante Bond
Total: 19 = 53 (+1 SUS, 1 PUP)
With Doug Martin being suspended for the first 3 games he does not count toward the 53 active players roster, and thus another player can be added to the roster for the first 3 games until his suspension is over and he is activated but then someone will have to be cut or put on IR. Also I believe that Jacquies Smith will either start the season on the pup list or on IR designated for return.
With my 53 man roster prediction completed let move on to something more difficult and predict the 10 member practice squad. Now the reason that this is more difficult is that 1184 players will be cut loose before Sunday September 3rd at 4 PM EST and any team can sign players that any other team has cut loose.
For this prediction then I will just use Buccaneers players that are currently on the roster before the countdown period.
With the start of a new program title the “International Player Pathway” all teams from the NFC South get an 11th member on their practice for the 2017 season, so on May 25th the Buccaneers were awarded Linebacker from Germany who played 3 seasons at the University of Wyoming, Eric Nzeocha.
Wide Receiver Freddie Martino
Wide Receiver Derel Walker
Wide Receiver Donteea Dye
Tackle Korren Kirven
Guard Jarvis Harrison
Defensive Tackle Stevie Tu’ikolovatu
Linebacker Riley Bullough
Linebacker Jeff Knox
Defensive End Channing Ward
Linebacker Cameron Lynch
Safety Isaiah Johnson
In my predictions I have for the Buccaneers practice squad I have three players who were on the 53 for part of last season in Freddie Martino, Channing Ward, and Cameron Lynch this is due to the talent that has been acquired through the draft, in free agency, or the return of injured players from last season.
There are some old faces in Isaiah Johnson and Donteea Dye and some new faces in Hard Knocks fan favorite Riley “Joe Dirt” Bullough.
I think that the 53 man roster will pretty much pan out as I have shown with a few surprises here and there, but with the practice squad you never know it is basically a crap shoot since there are so many players from other teams who could come into play.
Well that is it what do you think #StickCarriers did I pretty much get all the players who will make the 53 right? If you don’t think so feel free to let me know in the comments section or on Twitter @ND1Bucsfan