The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have released guard Davin Joseph, after eight seasons with the franchise.
Joseph has underwhelmed in his career with the Buccaneers, struggling in both pass protection and run blocking. The former first-round pick has never lived up to his potential, and had four years and $27.5 million remaining on his contract,according to spotrac.com, before his release.
"Decisions like this are never easy when it comes to parting ways with players such as Davin," said Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht.
Joseph started all 16 games in 2013 and 2011, but missed the entire 2012 season with a knee injury sustained in August. In fact, Joseph has started 99 of his 100 career games in Tampa Bay.
The Buccaneers were seemingly waiting for Joseph to display some of the potential that made his a first-round pick in 2006, but at 30 years old, the franchise is moving on.
"We thank Davin for his contributions on and off the field during his eight years in Tampa Bay and we wish him well in the future. Every decision we make during this time leading up to free agency is with the intention of improving our roster and building towards becoming a championship team once again." said Licht.
With the extra cap space, the Buccaneers can now be more aggressive in free agency, and will have to address their hole at guard. Jamon Meredith, who also started eight games at the position, is a free agent.
The team could also look to sign other free agents, such as Cleveland Browns center Alex Mack, who was offered the transition tag earlier this week that will allow the Browns to match any offer.
For Joseph, now he must look for another job. Wherever that may be, the contract will be for significantly less money than what he was making in Tampa Bay. One team that could be interested is another Florida franchise, the Miami Dolphins.
New general manager Dennis Hickey was formerly the director of pro personnel with Tampa Bay for the past three seasons.