Bucs play waiting game with Crumpler

Alge Crumpler (Getty Images)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have begun negotiations with free-agent tight end Alge Crumpler, but the veteran Pro Bowler is reportedly still visiting with other teams, as is his former teammate, DT Rod Coleman.

Falcons tight end Alge Crumpler visited the Bucs Tuesday and underwent a physical. General manager Bruce Allen is believed to have begun preliminary talks with agent James Williams. Crumpler met with the Tennessee Titans today and also is expected to talk with the Seattle Seahawks.

The four-time Pro Bowler, has more than 4,000 career receiving yards and 35 touchdowns. He would provide the Bucs with a complete tight end who obviously excels as a receiver. Tight ends Anthony Becht and Jerramy Stevens are free agents.

Defensive tackle Rod Coleman, Crumpler's teammate with the Falcons, visited the Bucs Wednesday. Negotiations have begun on Coleman, who was headed to Charlotte, N.C., to visit the Panthers.

GM Bruce Allen said he anticipates 30 percent of the projected free agents will re-sign with their current teams.

"We will keep re-shaping based on who comes in and making sure we're able to give the newer players that come in an opportunity," Allen said.

The Bucs have nine players who became unrestricted free agents on Feb. 29, including center John Wade, cornerback Sammy Davis and tight end Jerramy Stevens. Allen said he had talks at the combine aimed at re-signing some of those players, although most are expected to hit free agency.

"We want everyone to understand where we stand, and in some cases, we've agreed the best thing to do is to see what free agency offers them and they'll make a decision based on that," Allen said.

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