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Saints And Broncos After Lehr

Posted Mar 16, 2008 by Anwar S. Richardson

Updated Mar 16, 2008 at 05:57 PM

Tampa Bay unrestricted free agent G/C Matt Lehr is actively being pursued by New Orleans and Denver according to Bob Lattinville, his agent.

Lehr did not start last season, but appeared in every game. His biggest contribution occurred against New Orleans on Dec. 2, 2007.

After spending the majority of that game on the bench, center John Wade developed a cramp in his leg with two minutes remaining and Tampa Bay facing 4th-and-1 on New Orleans’ 28-yard line. Lehr was thrown into arguably the biggest play of 2007, and his role became more prominent when Gruden decided to go for it instead of attempting a field goal to tie the game at 23.

“I just said to myself, ‘Let’s get the first down’” Lehr said after the Saints game. “That is about all you can do. You practice all week, and you watch the team film like everybody else, so when you get an opportunity, you have to make the most of it.”

QB Luke McCown handed off to Earnest Graham, who ran 2 yards off tackle for the first down. Three plays later, TE Jerramy Stevens caught a 4-yard touchdown pass from McCown and Tampa Bay won, 27-23.

New Orleans and Denver are attracted to Lehr’s ability to play two different offensive line positions. Tampa Bay may examine bringing Lehr back for offensive line depth, but at this point, it appears unlikely.


Every available free agent is about to face an enormous amount of pressure if they do not sign with a team soon.

Most teams are getting geared up for the NFL Draft (April 26-27). Teams that have specific needs are now deciding if it is worth signing an available free agent, or attempt to improve through the draft. Essentially, teams have more options and leverage as the draft gets closer.

That is why DE Kevin Carter and RB Michael Pittman need to find homes quickly. Carter is still vacationing in Hawaii and might not make a decision until later this week, while Detroit has shown interest in Pittman, but teams are not fighting for him so far.

The longer free agents wait, the fewer options they will have.

Reader Comments

Por (John Klopfer) on March 16, 2008 (Suggest removal)

I would still like to see Pittman and Carter in a Bucs uniform. With the signing of Dunn, the need for Pittman has decreased. However, Pittman can back up at fullback and play several roles on special teams.

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Por (Tyler Ellrodt) on March 16, 2008 (Suggest removal)

what if the bucs had pittman play the role of a utility man.  he can be the backup fullback, pair up with micheal spurlock on kickoffs, play running back of course, and play reciever for us.  he is a very capable threat at reciever for a runningback and this could add a unique dimension to our offense.  maybe we will now see that so called rocket backfield only instead of cadillac, pittman, alstott backfield, we can see dunn, graham, and bennett.  pittman can come in on third downs.  just a thought for gruden.

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Por (derek davis) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

losing lehr is a big mistake there is no one else who can bring what he does as a backup and maybe a starter for some teams… with no proven backup center we need to resign him or maybe even wade to be the backup if hes still out there… you can bet lehr wont be back here if he gets a starting chance just like carter wouldnt I would imagine

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Por (Fernando) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

Rumor is Pitmann wanted more of a role in the offense. He is not going to be happy with being a FB, also there are some concerns about his broken ankle. Wish him the best!!!

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Por (Jonathan) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

Lets get Darrell Jackson since he was released from the 49ers, I think he would be good in our offense like he was for the seahawks. The 49ers didnt use him good, and garcia will get him the ball, unlike Alex Smith, but only if he would come here for a reasonable price.

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Por (Tony) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

Pittman can make sure the guys are hydrated on the sidelines while Carter helps them setup retirement plans

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Por (clifford cotton) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

i agree jackson should be signed. you do not go from being a top flight reciever to nothing in one season. unless you are michael clayton. also we need to make a run at getting pittman re signed.

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Por (raw_as_fuq) on March 17, 2008 (Suggest removal)

I agree the Bucs should sign Darrell Jackson, but that probably isn’t going to happen! Pittman is garbage hes nothing but a decent back-up and the Bucs have 3 decent starters in the backfield already.

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