LIVING BY NUMBERSThere are now 1,224 official members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ all-time roster. Tom Brady is 1,211, Lee Roy Selmon is 39 and Derrick Brooks 545. Really? This is not something you have probably ever seen appear on the Bucs or NFL websites.Firstly, it is worth explaining how a player officially becomes a Buccaneer. Originally they needed to have appeared in a regular season game for the Bucs. There were some players who suited up, were on the sidelines but never saw action on the field. They counted but then in the 1990s, the rules were changed to include players who were on the active roster but may have been on some kind of gameday inactive list for a particular game. This led to several players being added to the all-time roster.Practice squad players do not count but then you also have two players, Rickey Brady (1997) and Antony Jordan (1999) who were only ever on the roster for playoff games. The 1987 strike games have also caused some discrepancies with many teams including those players separately or with asterisks to indicate such participation. The Bucs had only one player who crossed the picket line (Dan Turk) but several of the replacement team players remained on the roster, most notably Paul Tripoli and Brian Gant.To give each player a unique identifier for statistical reasons, we came up with this numerical track around 10 years ago. So the 49 players who were on the roster for the first-ever game in Houston in 1976 take numbers 1-49 which those then being added alphabetically. So G Tom Alward will always now be the No.1 Buccaneer. Players have then been added from there as they joined the roster. 15 new players were added last week as the Bucs began their 2020 season in New Orleans including of course the likes of Brady, Rob Gronkowski and the rookie draft class.The NFL lists every player who has appeared for Tampa Bay and I have worked with the Bucs PR team over the years to clear any discrepancies and correct any issues that had appeared. When those extra players were given eligibility in the 1990s, it led to a few names being added for whom it was impossible to track down head pictures or game action. I am down to just 18 who I need such headshots for their profile pages, most of whom are either expansion or strike team Bucs. There are 14 for whom I have no game action and a further 17 who only have pictures of them in other uniforms. The worst scenario for those players were them being signed to the roster, being inactive for a week and then released. Thankfully the Bucs now always make sure they at least have a picture of such players on the practice field.