The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have reportedly reached a deal with free-agent safety Chris Conte. It's a one-year deal. Financial details weren't immediately released. Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com reported the deal was officially done.
Vaughn McClure of ESPN first passed along word of the signing:
Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times confirmed a deal was in place:
The Chicago Bears used a third-round pick to select Conte in the 2011 draft. The free safety appeared in 57 games, racking up over 230 tackles along with 21 passes defended and nine interceptions. He's an average option at the back end of the secondary.
There are still questions to answer for Tampa Bay, though. It's reportedly set to release Dashon Goldson to pave the way for Conte's arrival. Whether the new signing will end up sliding into the starting lineup might not be known until training camp.
The Bucs have both Major Wright and Bradley McDougald on the roster. The team could end up holding a competition during the preseason to fill the two roles. That is unless Conte was told prior to signing that he'd be a starter.
Having too many options is better than being short, though. Conte gives the Buccaneers some depth without having to invest in a long-term deal.