The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, announced that they have signed 10-year veteran, free agent guard Keydrick Vincent to a two-year contract. Vincent, 32, was a starter for the Carolina Panthers for the past two years. To make room on the roster for Vincent, the Bucs released rookie guard Sergio Render. The 6-foot-5, 325-pound Vincent has a reputation as a mauler in the running game.
An undrafted free agent with the Steelers in 2001, he has played in 97 games over the past nine seasons, starting 79. He has played at both guard positions, though the majority of his work has come at right guard, the position he filled for the Panthers the past two seasons. In which he helped the Panthers create one of the best rushing attacks in the NFL. In 2008 and 2009 Carolina had the third ranked rushing attack. They averaged 156.1 yards per game in 2008 and 152.3 yards per game, in 2009. Vincent has also started for the Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers.
Vincent provides depth, competition and will no doubt sure up the line. It is a decent signing by general manager Mark Dominik this close too camp, but the signing of Vincent could potentially have more to do with the possibility of pairing the wily veteran with either the inexperienced Demar Dotson or even Xavier Fulton as the team is displeased with current LG Jeremy Zuttah’s progress this off-season.
It might also be a clear sign, that the Bucs are anticipating a lengthy hold-out by Donald Penn that could drag in to the regular season. The idea of having Vincent playing next to an inexperienced player rather then the underachieving Zuttah provides a higher level of comfort heading in to training camp and the regular season while providing the team a plethora of options and flexibility in case of an injury or the continued hold-out by Penn.