Nate Kaeding and Steve Smith didn’t work out, but the Buccaneers aren’t going to stop trying to bring in veteran depth to compete in training camp.
According to a report from Jenna Laine of Sports Talk Florida, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are bringing veteran running back Peyton Hillis into camp to try out for a roster spot on Tuesday. Many fans and experts have expressed concern over the lack of depth behind Doug Martin, including my thoughts on the issue posted earlier this summer. If Peyton Hillis is anything like the same player who scored 13 times for the Browns in 2010, the Buccaneers have the depth they need. But there’s a reason Hillis was available at this point of the offseason.
Hillis has failed to do anything impressive since his single breakout season, and had been on the open market all summer. Peyton has not been fully healthy for a while, and there has been speculation as to how well he fits into an NFL locker room.
And a player who struggles to fit in with an NFL locker room is an interesting prospect in Tampa Bay. On one hand, Hillis will have to put up with a highly regimented schedule and procedure for everything, which will be an interesting test on his psychology. But on the other hand, the Buccaneers provide a unique locker room which is being crafted to feature “Buccaneer men” who have a loving family atmosphere.
There are still plenty of questions about Hillis, including what kind of shape he’s in, and if he’s mentally prepared to get back into the game. But he’ll have his chance tomorrow to prove to the Buccaneers that he’s ready to play football again, and if the Buccaneers offer him a contract, it will be exciting to see what kind of Peyton Hillis they’ll actually get.