Aug 29, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Russell Shepard (11) is unable to make a catch against the New York Jets during the second half of a preseason game at Metlife Stadium. The Jets won 27-20. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Claim Rookie Defensive Tackle Chris Jones, WR Russell Shepard

The surprise release of veteran defensive Gary Gibson left the Buccaneers seemingly short at defensive tackle. But today the Buccaneers reportedly added a new name to the ranks at defensive tackle to restore depth at the position.

 

Jones was a sixth round draft choice by the Texans in the NFL Draft earlier this year, but did not make the Houston roster.

The big man from Bowling Green was a Third Team All-American in 2012 thanks for 12.5 sacks from the defensive tackle position. NFL.com’s draft profile for Jones cites “relentlessness and consistent leverage” as the keys to Jones’ success in the NFL.

12.5 sacks is a ton from a defensive tackle at any level, and this was surely the appealing part of Jones’ game that has landed him in Tampa Bay. At 6’2″, 302 pounds he seems to be the right size to play the tilted nose position in the Buccaneers’ defense.

And according to his own Twitter account, the Buccaneers have apparently added Russell Shepard to the team in some capacity.

 

Shepard was undrafted in the 2013 NFL Draft and signed with the Eagles before being waived, but the former LSU wide receiver has a variety of skills. He’s played quarterback and receiver, and according to NFL.com, there are scouts who believe his best position in the NFL will be at defensive back.

That would make the most sense, wouldn’t it?

It’s unclear if Shepard is joining the 53-man roster or the practice squad.

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