The Green Bay Packers will have at least one new starter on offense this year, at center.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have signed former Packers center Even Dietrich-Smith to a four-year contract. According to multiple reports, Dietrich-Smithís new deal averages $3.6 million a season and includes about $7.25 million guaranteed.
For now, the move leaves second-year pro JC Tretter as the Packersí front-runner to start at center, though they also could sign a bargain free agent to compete for the job, or could draft at the position.
Tretter, a fourth-round draft pick in 2013, missed most of last season because of a broken ankle sustained in May. He came off the physically unable to perform list late in the year to win a spot on the 53-man roster rather than finish on injured reserve. He played tackle in college at Cornell, but the Packers projected him as a potential starting center of the future when they drafted him.
Dietrich-Smith, 27, started all 16 games at center last season and carried a strong endorsement from quarterback Aaron Rodgers. But general manager Ted Thompson didnít put as high a value on him as the Bucs did.