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Bucs to talk with Pro Bowl linebacker
By Rick Stroud, Times Staff Writer
Published August 23, 2007
TAMPA - Linebacker Jeremiah Trotter, released Tuesday by the Eagles, is considering making Tampa his next stop.
The four-time Pro Bowl pick was expected to arrive in Tampa on Wednesday night to meet with Bucs officials. There was no indication of his asking price.
Trotter, 30, is drawing interest from other teams, too. But the visit to Tampa was arranged less than 24 hours after his release, which Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb on Wednesday said left him "truly shocked."
Trotter would augment the Bucs at middle linebacker, where they lost key reserve Antoine Cash for the season Saturday to a knee injury. Third-year player Barrett Ruud is the starter. Trotter is regarded as a textbook run-stopper and at 6 feet 1, 262 pounds he would give the Bucs bulk. He led the Eagles last season with 161 tackles.
The drawback is Trotter's pass-coverage ability, which would be tested in a scheme that requires the middle linebacker to cover considerable ground against tight ends and, sometimes, receivers.
Trotter had three years and about $8.6-million in base salary left on his contract before being released. Wednesday, Eagles coach Andy Reid declined to say why Trotter was cut.
"I'm not going to get into all that," he said. "It's done."
CONFLICTING REPORTS: Don't expect to see Arron Sears for the rest of the preseason. So says his agent.
The rookie guard, who sprained his right ankle during practice Tuesday, will wear a boot for several days and not return for 10-14 days, according to Sean Kleman.
But coach Jon Gruden said Sears would miss only "a couple days."
"I don't know that he'll play in (Saturday's) game, but he's okay," he said. "It's nothing serious."
MISSING MAN FORMATION: Second-year receiver Maurice Stovall was the darling of training camp, earning the No. 2 spot on the first depth chart. But since then, he has been replaced by David Boston.
Against Jacksonville on Saturday, Stovall fumbled inside the red zone. But Gruden said Stovall is slowly rebounding.
"He's a magician. He disappeared on me for about 10 days," Gruden said. "He's showing up again. I think his legs are coming back. He's become explosive again, and he did some great things (Wednesday)."
Information from the Philadelphia Inquirer was used in this report.