Photo: Elijah Ponder; Credit: Buccaneers.com
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers plan to sign outside linebacker Elijah Ponder to their practice squad on Monday, according to Greg Auman of The Athletic. Ponder is expected to fill the spot vacated by outside linebacker Ladarius Hamilton, who was signed by Green Bay off of Tampa Bay's practice squad on Friday.
Ponder, a 6-foot-3, 275-pound undrafted rookie out of Cincinnati, signed with Tampa Bay this offseason and spent the summer with the team before being waived during final roster cutdowns. Ponder was impressive in the preseason, tallying four tackles and three quarterback pressures (per Pro Football Focus) across 79 defensive snaps.
Head coach Bruce Arians complimented Ponder in August for his preseason and training camp performances, having made the switch from defensive tackle to edge rusher since joining the team. "He's done well," Arians said. "He's learned and grown and he made some big plays."
At Cincinnati, Ponder accumulated 63 tackles, four sacks, 12 tackles for loss and a forced fumble in three seasons, making 32 game appearances and 23 starts on the Bearcats' defensive line.
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