Mason Foster spent the entirety of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' three-day minicamp working at middle linebacker. But coach Greg Schiano said it's still too soon to know if Foster will stay in that spot, where he started 15 of 16 games as a rookie last season.
Schiano wrapped up his first minicamp with the team on Thursday, saying he did a lot of experimenting, particularly at the linebacker position, which was mostly in flux during the workouts.
"We mixed it up, really,'' Schiano said.
Confirming Tampa Bay's need to find a new starter at weakside linebacker, former Bucs linebacker Geno Hayes signed a one-year contract on Thursday with the Chicago Bears. Quincy Black and Dekoda Watson worked at both outside positions during the camp, and Schiano was impressed with Watson's explosion and pass-rush skills.
"We're going to move them around right now," Schiano said. "It's good to mess around and try guys at different spots, but then we have to lock in, so I really look forward to talking to the staff about that.
"And then there's this thing (next week), that draft thing. That might bring some new bodies here, too. Then I think we can know better where we're headed.''
Hayes, 24, was a sixth-round pick of the Bucs out of Florida State in 2008, and he was the primary starter each of the past three seasons. He started 42 games in four seasons, with seven career sacks, four interceptions and four forced fumbles. He was inconsistent, however, and he was allowed to leave as a free agent.
Schiano likes effort
Schiano was mostly pleased with the effort and intensity his players brought to the workouts. The limited time he had on the field, however, kept him from achieving all his goals.
"As a coach, you never get done what you want to get done. There just aren't enough hours,'' Schiano said. "But I was really encouraged by the attitude of our guys and the energy level they brought to work every day. If we continue to grow that, all the other stuff will continue to grow."
Briscoe misses camp
WR Dezmon Briscoe, absent because of a personal matter, was the only player among those expected to participate who did not show up for the camp.
Briscoe said in a Twitter post he is looking forward to rejoining his teammates on Monday.
"As for me not being at camp. There are personal reasons. I love my teammates and I'll be back at workouts Monday,'' Briscoe wrote. "I could of handled the situation better. Everyone that knows me know I'm a team player till I die. No individuals.''
Briscoe, a second-year pro, caught 35 passes for 387 yards and a team-high six touchdowns last season.
Tampa Bay announced the signing of former Chiefs and United Football League S Ron Girault and former Bears RB Robert Hughes. Girault was a four-year starter at Rutgers for Schiano.