The speculation has been mounting for months on whether or not the Bucs would make an attempt at keeping outspoken receiver Antonio Bryant in the fold for 2010 and beyond. Bryant, 28, was rewarded by the organization for his stellar 83 receptions for 1,248 yards and seven touchdowns performance in 2008, when the team placed the franchise tag on him. Hobbled by chronic knee problems in 2009. Bryant grew increasingly frustrated with his role in the offense and publicly aired his dissatisfaction to members of the local media.
With one short, but to the point sentence. Head coach Raheem Morris speaking from a coffee shop, adjacent to Lucas Oil Stadium. Finally put an end to it. By telling local beat reporter Rick Stroud of the St. Petersburg Times “Right now we’re going in a young direction. We’re going to choose to move on.” With Bryant’s durability, age and his outspoken demeanor being questioned. The team has decided to go in a different direction.
“He’s going to go out and test his free agent market,”’ Morris said. “Obviously, we won’t do the (franchise) tag and all that kind of stuff. We don’t need to do that. It’s going to be our decision. We’re going our direction. We’re going a different direction and we wish nothing but the best of luck to Antonio. We’re very proud of what he was able to do here in Tampa. He had a very productive year in 2008. In 2009, it was a rough year for him personally. He’s a good football player. We’ve got to make that decision to move on and off we go.”