Former Atlanta Falcons starting center Joe Hawley told ESPN on Monday that he's in the process of signing a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Falcons released Hawley last week after claiming center Gino Gradkowski off waivers from the Denver Broncos.
First-year Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter held the same position with the Falcons from 2012-14 and is familiar with Hawley.
A 2010 fourth-round draft pick out of UNLV, Hawley had been penciled in as the Falcons' starter coming off major knee surgery. He played in four games last season before tearing the ACL and MCL in his right knee at Minnesota.
He continued to experience soreness in the knee this preseason.
Evan Smith is atop the Buccaneers' depth chart at center, with Jeremiah Warren listed as his backup.