The Bucs, busy in retaining their own top talent on Monday, have been linked to an outside free agent in Eagles defensive tackle Beau Allen.
Two reports had the Bucs among the team interested in the 26-year-old run-stopper — the St. Paul Pioneer Press identified the Bucs and Lions as being interested in Allen, and 97.3 ESPN radio in Philadelphia said the Bucs, Lions and Chargers were interested.
While Allen wouldn't necessarily be a starter for the Bucs, going after the Super Bowl champions' depth is a smart tactic. The Eagles are well over the salary cap and will have to make cuts just to meet Wednesday's deadline to get under the cap, so their young talent might be more available than most teams.
Allen was a seventh-round pick out of Wisconsin in 2014, and he's played four seasons in Philadelphia, totaling 5 tackles and two sacks. He was a key part of the NFL's No. 1 run defense in 2017, as the Eagles allowed a league-low 79.2 rushing yards per game.
The Eagles have a combined $28-million a year stuck in starting defensive tackles Fletcher Cox and Timmy Jernigan, so they won't likely be able to afford Allen, who is 6-foot-3 and 327 pounds. He had 20 tackles this past season, and played 423 defensive snaps, just 70 fewer than Jernigan. He also had two tackles in the Super Bowl victory against the Patriots.
Teams can't sign free agents from other teams until Wednesday afternoon. If you're looking for a Bucs-Eagles tie here, the best one would be national scout Andy Speyer, who was with the Eagles in 2014 when they drafted Lewis.
The Bucs already released veteran defensive tackle Chris Baker, and another veteran, Clinton McDonald, is an unrestricted free agent. That leaves Pro Bowl player Gerald McCoy at defensive tackle with limited depth around him.