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Buccaneers Release Mickens Among Handful of Roster Moves

The Buccaneers will be making a change on kick and punt returns.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers released wide receiver and returner Jaydon Mickens on Monday, one of four roster moves the team announced. The Bucs activated offensive lineman John Molchon from the injured reserve in a corresponding move.

In addition, Tampa Bay signed cornerback Blidi Wreh-Wilson to its practice squad and released edge defender Elijah Ponder to create a spot for Wreh-Wilson.

Mickens had been Tampa Bay's starting returner since 2020, averaging 25.8 yards per kick return and 6.8 yards per punt return this season. He also was used sparingly at wide receiver in his time with the Bucs, catching seven passes for 58 yards in 2020.

Rookie wide receiver Jaelon Darden, the team's fourth-round pick this spring, is expected to take over those duties. Darden has been inactive in five of six games so far this season but caught a pass (for no gain) against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 3.

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Molchon, who plays center, went on the injured reserve after initially making the team's 53-man roster in September while dealing with a leg injury. Molchon will provide depth behind starter Ryan Jensen and third-round pick Robert Hainsey while Jensen nurses a hip injury, which he played through against Philadelphia.

Down yet another cornerback as Richard Sherman injured his hamstring against the Eagles, Wreh-Wilson provides valuable depth at the position and is eligible for two standard practice squad elevations this season. The ninth-year pro has appeared in 75 career games, starting 17, and has recorded 132 tackles, two tackles for loss, four interceptions, 28 defended passes, and a forced fumble.

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