The Tampa Bay Buccaneers released cornerback Darrelle Revis on Wednesday afternoon, opening the door for the Browns and other teams to sign him as a free agent.

Browns had reportedly shown "significant'' interest in trading for Revis, but the Patriots might now also make a strong push to sign him.

The Patriots lost cornerback Aqib Talib to the Broncos on Tuesday night, and are in the market for a premier corner to replace him. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that the Patriots might make a move for Revis after losing Talib, whom they were reportedly close to signing.

Schefter reported that Talib signed a six-year, $57 million contract with the Broncos, including $26 million guaranteed.

Revis was due a $1.5 million roster bonus from the Bucs, which is one reason they released him Wednesday afternoon. Now, Revis is free to sign with any team.

The five-time Pro Bowler played for Browns coach Mike Pettine for four seasons when he was defensive coordinator of the Jets under Rex Ryan. Revis, the premier shutdown corner in the NFL, made three of his five Pro Bowls with Pettine as his coordinator.

Pairing Revis (5-11, 198) with Pro Bowler Joe Haden would give the Browns the best cornerback tandem in the NFL and enable Pettine to run is press man-cover scheme effectively.

After sitting out most of 2012 with a torn anterior cruciate ligament, Revis was traded to the Bucs last season and signed to a six-year deal through 2018 worth $96 million. He's due to make $13 million in 2014, but his base salary can be converted into a signing bonus and spread out over the life of the contract, according to Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune.

Cornerback is a high priority for the Browns in free agency, a league source told cleveland.com. But some of the best ones are already off the market, including Green Bay's Sam Shields, Talib and Alterraun Verner, who signed with Tampa Bay and made Revis expendable.