The winless Bucs made the latest move during their bye week after general manager Mark Dominik contacted every other team in the NFL in an unsuccessful attempt to trade Freeman, a 4,000-yard passer a year ago and the team’s career leader with 1,144 completions and 80 touchdowns.
Freeman is owed the remaining $6.25 million on the contract he signed as the third quarterback selected in the 2009 draft.
The release caps a tumultuous month in which Freeman overslept before missing a team photo shoot, was not voted a captain for time since his rookie year, and reportedly missed at least one other team meeting.
This week, the saga took a messy turn when Freeman released a statement through his agent, saying he had Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and entered the NFL substance-abuse program more than a year ago after mistakenly taking Ridilin instead of Adderall to treat the condition.
The NFL Players Association is investigating the quarterback’s claim that someone in the Bucs organization leaked confidential information about him being in the program to the media.
FALCONS: Starting left tackle Sam Baker and starting middle linebacker Akeem Dent have been ruled out of Monday night’s game against the New York Jets with injuries.
Baker went down with a knee injury last Sunday against the New England Patriots, while Dent suffered an ankle injury in the loss.
GOODELL’S E-MAIL: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, in an e-mail to 10 million names in its database Thursday, highlighted the league’s safety programs and new emphasis on safety in youth football.
The letter came a day after two excerpts from a new book – League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth – detailed what authors Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru claim was the NFL using its power and resources to downplay the effects of concussions on NFL players.
SEAHAWKS: Claimed rookie quarterback B.J. Daniels, San Francisco’s seventh-round draft pick out of South Florida, off waivers. San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh had made it clear the 49ers valued Daniels and had every intention of signing him to their practice squad. Before the season, Seattle released receiver Chris Harper, a fourth-round draft pick, hoping to add him to the practice squad. Instead, the 49ers added him to their 53-man roster.