In trimming their roster down to 75, the Buccaneers released running back Derrick Ward Tuesday afternoon.
After rushing for 1,025 yards with the New York Giants in 2008, the Buccaneers signed Ward to a four-year, $17 million contract in 2009. With the emergence of Kareem Huggins, Cadillac Williams’ healthy return, and Earnest Graham’s ability to play both full back and running back, there was no room for Ward.
“After practice today we were able to notify Mr. Ward,” head coach Raheem Morris said. “It’s just like any other profession when it is time for you to depart. It’s not a surprise anytime in our profession anytime we tell you to go—can’t say you’re surprised. You have every day to go out there and prove yourself, and it’s just your job.”
Ward rushed for just 409 yards and one touchdown in 2009.
“It’s more about the resurgence of Mr. Cadillac, Mr. Insurance Graham, where the team is heading and where we’re going, our plan and direction, and how we want to go about our business,” said Morris. “No decision is made lightly around here. It was just time to make it today.”
Wide receiver Terrence Nunn was also released Tuesday afternoon and linebacker Jon Alston was put on injured reserve to trim the Buccaneers’ roster to 75.