WR Josh Huff – Photo by Getty Images
With the Bucs thin at receiver – Russell Shepard (hip) still sidelined and Louis Murphy (ACL) likely headed back to IR, coach Dirk Koetter hinted Monday – the team signed former Eagles’ wideout Josh Huff to the practice squad.
Koetter addressed the move to sign Huff, 25, on the field Monday, calling the 5-foot-11 receiver a “developmental” player like anyone else on the practice squad. Koetter, who coached the former Oregon standout at the Senior Bowl in 2014 while on the Falcons’ staff, noted that Huff’s experience in the pros is mainly on special teams.
“I think he had 13 catches as a receiver [in 2016],” Koetter said. It should be noted, though, that Huff has 48 career receptions for 482 yards and four touchdowns.
“He was doing well on teams as a cover man. Again, he’s a guy, like all these guys, who had a strong college career. He was available and we’re going to take a look at him on the practice squad.”
If not for an off-field incident, Huff may still be on the Eagles’ active roster. He was pulled over for speeding on November 1 and arrested with marijuana and an unloaded handgun, for which he had no permit. Philadelphia subsequently released him on November 3.
Huff, who played in seven games for Philly this year with two starts, said he’s learned from his mistake and is grateful for another opportunity.
“Obviously I’m mad that I put myself in that situation, but you live and you learn,” Huff said in open locker. “I’m excited to be here and get going and get used to my new teammates, the players around here and the new staff.”
He said he’s ready to play anywhere the Bucs need him, whether it’s on special teams or as a wide receiver on the practice squad or active roster at some point.
“Whatever I can do to show the coaches that I’m here to play,” Huff said. “Whatever I can do to show my teammates that I’m here to make plays.
“Special teams is special teams. Obviously it’s another phase of the game where you can change the momentum,” he said. “If that’s where they want me to be, then that’s where I’ll be. Wherever they want me to be, I’m willing to do it. Again, I’m just grateful for the opportunity.”
A former third-round pick, Huff caught 144 passes for 2,366 yards and 24 touchdowns from quarterback Marcus Mariota at Oregon. In 2014, a season in which the Ducks would eventually lose the National Championship to Ohio State, Huff broke the school record for receiving yards in a single season (1,140) and was named honorable mention All-Pac 12 in both his junior and senior year.
Huff takes running back Russell Hansbrough’s spot on the practice squad. The latter was promoted in the wake of Antone Smith’s season-ending knee injury, giving the Bucs three healthy backs, along with Peyton Barber and Mike James.
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
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So we release players with character issues in ASJ, and sign players with character issues in Huff. Now I’m thinking the front office is not sure what they’re doing. It would be nice to see the FO stand behind a troubled player and help them through issues, especially a player we drafted. Now we’ll see if Huff sticks around….
Agree Sactobuc. No one could have anticipated all the injuries-especially key players. But taken with a hindsight grain of salt and saying this without knowing the private stuff- ASJ gave us a lot as far as a big body pass catcher who could make that spectacular catch- why we couldnt discipline him in house more than just getting rid of him, i will never understand; i can see where he might be a distraction and often wondered how hurt he really was when he was injured- but in some of these games like the raiders and atlanta- he could have helped immensely.
Now we get another troubled player off waivers, who is considerably smaller… just really does make you wonder if the FO is really trying to win games or have they started focusing on a top 10 pick and fielding a team that gets us to a certain place in the draft.
Just have Huff run go routes so at least the opposing safeties can’t just focus on Mike every play. Hell, maybe he’ll even pull down a deep ball or get a DPI. But, I’m not expecting any of that to happen. What a frustrating year.
So it’s ok to work with a troubled player from another team but not our very own. Got it lol Can we fire Licht already????
Well, ASJ had other issues in addition to the DUI. It wasn’t a one and done kind of thing. Here’s hoping Huff can produce and give Jameis another target. Gotta draw some of the heat off big Mike
I understand most of you want to be negative with a 3-5 record, but at least try to have a modicum of intelligence while you are doing it.
First of all, if you read anything about ASJ, you would know the Bucs tried to persuade him to get help with his drinking problem, but weren’t successful.
Because of HIPPA and libel laws, the Bucs can’t come out and say, “We tried to convince ASJ that he was an alcoholic but he wouldn’t go into Rehab or even attend an AA meeting.”
But when a GM like Licht says, “we tried to get ASJ to get some help,” that is exactly what he is saying.
Get a clue you guys and take your hater blinders off.
After 2 DUI’s, you can pretty much believe that ASSJ is an alcoholic who is in denial.
Alcoholism is a progressive illness. That means it gets worse unless it is treated.
Geeeeeesh. Pick up a book. They hide them in libraries.
Exactly…….ASJ was a lost cause!!!
Drdneast is correct.
Wasn’t this the thinking when we got rid of talib or Blount or Michael Bennett three guys we could still have I’m sorry I don’t care about his personal stuff honestly I need players alot of good players come with concerns one thing I knew was in the first game against atl no linebacker or safety eat up with asj on that td catch if u want a team full of good guys go ahead look at our team lvd great guy not producing conte no problems except he can cover a bed hump nice kid good number 3 but not a threat and I can go on and on we need to find some bad guys to chew into these good guys to light a fire cuz it’s beyond ridiculous how bad we are
since when is owning a gun and speeding “a character issue”… if that’s the case half america is scumbags lol the dolphin qb left an assault rifle in his rental car and it was barely a blip on anyone’s radar
People fail to realize that our goal is to win games not produce a Christian boy band. The point is that ASJ wasn’t suspended by the league meaning he could have helped us at least through the end of this season but we cut bait on a player that could be helping us win. Meanwhile we are taking chances on a guy that’s a special teams player at best who was caught speeding, with a gun and marijuana. But I guess since he wasn’t smoking it then it’s cool lol. Drdneast the real question is where are they hiding the common sense.
And no as a fan I don’t care that he didn’t want to go to AA, I care that OCs had to gameplan to stop him. But he sure proved his point, cut the drunk productive player and sign the high one that never produced, got it!
ASJ was never committed remember when he got kicked out of practice for not knowing the playbook and proceeded to go on twitter and make your mom jokes to fans lol I’m glad they cut that loser
On what planet would you call ASJ productive. The Jets are finding out he is all about potential and is always hurt. Thats before you add in the off feild problems,
I don’t like Huffs’ recent off field stuff, but he has been very PRODUCTIVE on special teams for the Eagles.
I’m not going to approach this move attempting to condemn or justify the moral character of Mr Huff. He made an obvious mistake and has/is paying the consequences for his actions. I won’t rationalize either by saying “but he didn’t shoot anybody” or give examples like former Buc Super Bowl winner Dwight Smith who not only got stopped with a gun , but pointed it at passing motorists. lol.
I’m looking at the football move and the long term needs of our team. First this move is low risk/high reward. He is only on the PS and should be warehoused there until his off-field affairs are in order. New Jersey gun laws are as strict as New York’s, but an attorney with the right connections will be able to offer the appropriate financial incentives to get his charge reduced to a misdemeanor. Then there is Warden Goodell who will want his pound of flesh for violation of the personal conduct policy. All of these things can be handled this season and Huff should be fully rehabilitated and ready to go by the start of the 2017 football year.
Huff fills a need. This is like getting an extra 3rd round pick in the 2017 draft. At 5-11, 206, 4.46/40, he fills a need at KR/PR and is an accomplished route runner that can stretch the field. If he gets rehabbed with no more incidents, this could turn out to be a good move. If not, he gets waived – no harm, no fault.
I am surprised the Bucs made this move, but not at all unlike a Belichek bold move. Go Bucs!
Thank goodness for posters like macabee and Dr.D. I guess some folks here want to connect the ASJ release to this Huff signing to the Practice Squad as being a bit of hypocrisy.
I was a big ASJ fan due to his potential and defended him on numerous occasions. Then came the last straw when he was released, signed by the Jets and hurt once again. I too wondered why he couldn’t be rehabilitated. What none of us know, is how many straws and chances to get his spit together (video showed he had an issue there) there were before the ax came down. I know next to nothing about Huff but as macabee said. “no harm no fault”.
If our WR corps was this depleted earlier in the season, they may have held on to ASJ a bit longer… then he would have been injured, and not been playing now anyway! I have no problems giving Huff a 2nd chance- it was not an isolated incident w/ ASJ, unfortunately. And you can only help people who want to be helped.
He can not only returns kicks he can get down the field quick and tackle on STs like Ryan Smith has proven he can do too, so we don’t have to keep our second best WR, Shepard, on STs and free him up to be our full time number two receiver so teams can’t just double Evans all the time. If this had happened in Tampa he would not have been arrested for the pot and having a gun in your car for defense is legal without a permit just as long as he had it securely encased, so I am OK with giving him a second chance. We also need to use him returning punts too so we don’t get Hump injured. And he was a Duck in college which means Koetter probably had instant info with his contacts on his real character. I doubt he is a big troublemaker.
PS: Also great to have one of my favorite posters, Maccabee, posting here once again and making great points as he always does.
Welcome back, Buddy.
even if Huff doesn’t produce much as a WR i think he will really boast our special teams no more Ryan Smith returning kicks
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