Javien Elliott wasn’t off the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ active roster for long, roughly the same amount of time that Kevin Minter was on it.
On Tuesday, the Buccaneers promoted Elliott from the practice squad back to the 53-man roster, reversing the moves they had made a week ago. To make room for the third-year cornerback, the team released linebacker Kevin Minter, a sixth-year veteran who had signed with the team last week in the wake of a season-ending injury to Kwon Alexander.
The Buccaneers filled the open spot on the practice squad created by Elliott’s promotion by re-signing running back Dare Ogunbowale.
The Buccaneers had waived Elliott last Tuesday in order to make room for cornerback De’Vante Harris, who was re-signed after overcoming a hamstring injury. The Buccaneers will now carry both Elliott and Harris on the active roster, most likely a response to rookie M.J. Stewart suffering a foot injury in Sunday’s game at Cincinnati. Stewart was the Buccaneers’ starting nickel back and Harris filled in at that spot after his injury; Elliott has served as the team’s nickel back in the past.
Elliott, in fact, has played 27 games for the Buccaneers over the past three seasons, with two starts, seeing his most extended playing time as the nickel back for the last third of his 2016 rookie campaign. In all, he has tallied 16 tackles, one tackle for loss and one pass defensed. He joined the Buccaneers as an undrafted rookie in 2016, out of Florida State, and has been with the team without interruption ever since, either on the practice squad or the active roster.
Minter played in the game on Sunday but only on special teams, logging 12 snaps. Adarius Taylor started at middle linebacker in Alexander’s spot, sliding over from the strongside position, which was then assumed by Devante Bond. Prior to joining the Buccaneers, Minter played four seasons with Arizona (2013-16) and one with the New York Jets, appearing in 71 games with 44 starts.
Ogunbowale went to training camp with the Buccaneers and played in all four preseason games, running 21 times for 55 yards and adding six receptions for 69 yards. He was on Tampa Bay’s practice squad for the first six weeks of the season. The Bucs may need added practice-field reps from Dare Ogunbowale if the hamstring injury sustained by rookie running back Ronald Jones keeps him off the field this week.