The Buccaneers were expected to allow S Jermaine Phillips to depart when he became a free agent this offseason, and recent events have made his return even less likely. Phillips was arrested and charged with domestic battery by strangulation on Jan. 10 after a dispute with his wife. He has been released from jail, but faces up to a five-year prison sentence if he's convicted. Sources familiar with Phillips were surprised by the news and said it was completely out of character for him to be involved in such a situation. We're told there's a small chance that his career with the Bucs isn't over if the team doesn't draft a safety or find a veteran replacement in free agency. Phillips, who turns 31 in March, has struggled to stay on the field the past couple seasons, as he has suffered multiple injuries. Those problems, coupled with the recent allegations, will make him an unappealing option for many teams this offseason.
PFW has launched its brand-new NFL Draft Newsletter series, with the second issue now ready for mailing. Produced by PFW's player personnel department under the direction of Nolan Nawrocki, the series consists of four information-packed issues. For more info or to subscribe — click here for PDF e-pub or here for print format.