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Josh McCown is Buccaneers QB, Lovie Smith says

Lovie Smith arrived on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers scene armed with the knowledge that no team repeats as the NFC South champion. The division is wide open, and Smith is going for the brass ring.

Having already stated that he's not ready to build his roster around Mike Glennon, Smith made it clear Wednesday that his quarterback job is now newly acquired Josh McCown's to lose.

"There has to be a starting spot, a starting point," Smith said, via the Tampa Bay Times, "a starting person to go out there first. And that would be Josh."

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McCown will ostensibly have a long leash entering training camp.

Asked point-blank if McCown is his quarterback, Smith replied, "Yes. He is."

While Smith's candidness is noteworthy, it's hardly a surprise. McCown was downright excellent in relief of Jay Cutler last season. He also played for Smith in 2011 and 2012.

The Bucs' new regime isn't content to go through a rebuilding process. Even with Darrelle Revis departing, this team has a stout defensive nucleus, an improved quarterback situation and a talented young running back returning from injury.

They're not done shopping, either. They have free-agent visits scheduled with offensive linemen Anthony Collins and Evan Dietrich-Smith, wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders and Ted Ginn and cornerback Charles Tillman.

While the Panthers are busy shedding franchise icons, Smith's Bucs are initiating an NFC South arms race.

In the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast," the guys study the free agency picture with the help of NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport.

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