Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Quarterback Chris Simms, linebacker Ryan Nece, and return man Micheal Spurlock were among the 21 players released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Saturday, as Jon Gruden's squad reduced its roster to 53 in accordance with NFL rules.
Simms has not played since September of 2006, when he suffered a life- threatening ruptured spleen in a loss to the Carolina Panthers. The 2003 third-round pick out of Texas sat out the entire 2007 season while recuperating, and in the offseason was involved in a public spat with the organization over his role with the team.
Simms, the son of New York Giants legend Phil Simms, completed 19-of-30 passes for 155 yards with an interception in the 2008 preseason, and was sacked five times.
Simms wasn't the only son of a famous former NFL player to get his walking papers on Saturday, as Nece was trimmed after six years in Tampa Bay. Nece, the son of Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, played in 85 games with the Bucs from 2002 through 2007, but hadn't started a contest since 2006.
Spurlock's claim to fame came in a win over the Atlanta Falcons last Dec. 16th, when he became the first player in Buccaneers history to score a touchdown off of a kickoff return. The former college quarterback averaged just 17.4 yards per kick return in the 2008 preseason, however.
Also released on Saturday were defensive end Charles Bennett, guard Phil Bogle, defensive tackle Chris Bradwell, defensive end Patrick Chukwurah, wide receiver Brian Clark, tackle Chris Clark, running back Kenneth Darby, cornerback Sammy Davis (waived/injured), guard Chris Denman, tight end Daniel Fells, cornerback Marcus Hamilton, cornerback Darrell Hunter, guard Brian Johnson, wide receiver Chad Lucas, defensive tackle Dre Moore, tackle Dennis Roland, running back Clifton Smith, and fullback Carl Stewart.
Notables among that group include Chukwurah and Davis, both of whom saw time on Tampa Bay's active roster a year ago, and Moore, the club's fourth-round Draft choice in 2008.
Tampa Bay chose to keep four quarterbacks on the roster for the time being, with Jeff Garcia, Brian Griese, Luke McCown, and rookie Josh Johnson still listed at the position.
In another move, the team placed wideout Cortez Hankton placed on season- ending injured reserve.
The Bucs will begin the 2008 regular season slate on Sept. 7, when they travel to meet the New Orleans Saints.
08/30 22:00:59 ET