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michael89156

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: July 31, 2011, 01:40:56 AM

Tampa Bay Bucs prefer ensuring they can keep their nucleus to spending big money on free agents

By Rick Stroud, Times Staff Writer
In Print: Sunday, July 31, 2011


 

TAMPA Tampa Bay fans who learned their team was $59 million under the salary cap fantasized about how the Bucs would monopolize free agency.

So why hasn't general manager Mark Dominik, who owns the deeds to Boardwalk and Park Place, started building hotels?

For starters, that's not the Bucs' philosophy. Since taking over, Dominik and coach Raheem Morris have turned one of the oldest rosters into the youngest and vowed to build through the draft. Re-signing their own free agents such as guard Davin Joseph, linebacker Quincy Black and tackle Jeremy Trueblood was the priority, much to the astonishment of fantasy football fans who saw Raiders free agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha in red and pewter.

"An easy thing for all fans to understand is that, by the collective bargaining there is a spending minimum that the entire league has to do over the next couple of years," Dominik said. "Obviously, we're part of that. We're sticking with our plan of how we want to put this thing together and be a long-term contender.

"The important thing for me, the important thing for Coach Morris and, really, for ownership, is to try to keep the continuity together. It's what we all fell in love with back in the '90s, that group of guys. We'd like to do that again. When you see the contracts that are going around the National Football League right now, you know you've got to budget accordingly today to make sure you can take care of your team tomorrow. That's what we're doing."

Part of the spending expectations for the Bucs was created by a realization that under the new collective bargaining agreement, teams had to spend 99 percent of the $120 million salary cap in 2011 and 2012. But that only applies on a leaguewide basis.

The "minimum team cash spend" on salaries and signing bonus of 89 percent of the cap applies on a four-year basis from 2013 through 2016, and from 2017 through 2020.

So when the Bucs sign Joseph to a seven-year, $52.5 million deal, only a pro-rated portion of that goes toward this year's salary cap. But the entire value of the contract counts against the league's spending requirement of $3.8 billion.

More important, Dominik wants to be in a position to lock up core players when their contracts expire in the next few years.

The Bucs aren't done spending on free agents. They may even have enough left for a high-mileage Cadillac. But the free agent shopping spree was never in the plans, or the budget.

THREE TO WATCH: Training camp is only a few days old, but here are three of the more unheralded Bucs rookies who could impress:

RB Mossis Madu: The undrafted free agent from Oklahoma was described by fellow Sooner Gerald McCoy as a "scat back." At 6-foot, 197 pounds, Madu is deceptively quick, has great feet and catches the ball cleanly.

TE Daniel Hardy: With the hip injury to fourth-round pick Luke Stocker, Hardy has a great opportunity to get more reps. A seventh-round pick from Idaho, Hardy has the size (6-foot-4) and hands, but he has to continue to impress as a blocker.

S Ahmad Black: Okay, Gators fans know Black is a ball hawk. The Bucs aren't overly deep at safety and the fifth-round pick will get a chance to make his mark. Nobody was expecting Cody Grimm to burst onto the scene a year ago.

SunnyD

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#1 : July 31, 2011, 01:48:49 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

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#2 : July 31, 2011, 01:54:34 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.

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#3 : July 31, 2011, 02:14:55 AM

Are we thinking that our defensive line is going to be so dominant that it will make our secondary look better than it is? I'm worried about Talib being unavailable, Barber being ready for retirement, and am not sold on Biggers and Mack.

I like that we will be in a position to sign some of our studs to future contracts...but would it have been so bad to make a legitimate push to sign Joseph at least?

We may have missed the playoffs last year...but I don't think we are too far off from a decent run.
: July 31, 2011, 02:25:34 AM Captain Morgan

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#4 : July 31, 2011, 02:35:21 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.



Thats it.   Gotta plan ahead to sign these youngsters later on.  And hopefully a couple of these D-line guys emerge this year and we will need to secure them long term down the road.


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#5 : July 31, 2011, 03:13:24 AM

I understand and agree with not overpaying for a Doug Free, Jonathan Joseph, or Nnamdi.

What I don't understand, is why can't we go after someone like Zac Diles, Josh Wilson, or Rocky McIntosh?

I really like the signing of Koenen, but I don't understand why bringing in another potential starter at WLB or CB is a bad thing? I"m not saying spend a lot of money, I"m saying do something so we don't necessarilly have to depend on relative unproven players.

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#6 : July 31, 2011, 03:17:43 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.

Yet which team won 27 World Series titles? What's their payroll? And what's the Rays payroll? How many World Series have the Rays won? I mean if you want to compare this to baseball....lets make a fair comparison shall we?

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#7 : July 31, 2011, 03:20:51 AM

If Cadillac isn't brought back (and I think he will be) you'll either see Madu or Allen as the teams third down back this year.


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#8 : July 31, 2011, 03:25:19 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.

Yet which team won 27 World Series titles? What's their payroll? And what's the Rays payroll? How many World Series have the Rays won? I mean if you want to compare this to baseball....lets make a fair comparison shall we?

Only an idiot would try to compare football to baseball.

Oh, wait...


cyberdude558

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#9 : July 31, 2011, 03:35:51 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.

Yet which team won 27 World Series titles? What's their payroll? And what's the Rays payroll? How many World Series have the Rays won? I mean if you want to compare this to baseball....lets make a fair comparison shall we?

Only an idiot would try to compare football to baseball.

Oh, wait...

Did you read the quote? I didnt start it.

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#10 : July 31, 2011, 03:48:32 AM

Can you imagine how pissed fans would be if we lost a guy like Mike Williams in free agency in a few years?

Yikes

I'd hate to be in a position where we had to lose someone like Benn because we couldn't afford to lock both he and Mike up.

Bottom line, Dominik wants a homegrown team. Look at the Rays, they stay competitive despite a tiny payroll because of good drafting and the few times they did look to spend in FA, it backfired (Pat Burrell, Manny Ramirez). Fans won't like the approach because they want to see the upgrades now, but this is a proven strategy to build football teams. I'll have faith in the direction this front office is going until they show me otherwise.

Yet which team won 27 World Series titles? What's their payroll? And what's the Rays payroll? How many World Series have the Rays won? I mean if you want to compare this to baseball....lets make a fair comparison shall we?

Lets make a fair comparison, or UN-fair as it is in this particular case. Thats NY, not Tampa... Yankee's have had the highest payroll forever, this year its $196,854,630. Kansas City has the lowest /w $35,712,400. Last year Dallas was at $136.6 million, Bucs /w the lowest at 59.7 million. Yankee's and Boston sell out every game, have historic traditions, located in the largest cities with some of  the most densely populated suburbs. Add to the fact the gargantuan TV contracts there allowed to gobble up, with sharing much revenue(if any?)There isn't even a salary floor in Baseball. The salary cap, is some soft cap that only penalizes teams that go over a certain #, any clue as to what that number is? Only 178 million for this year. The Yankee's have had to pay huge penalties thus far, as well as other Baseball franchises in the past, including Boston, and the Angels.

This is what I think about the Glazers being cheap...

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#11 : July 31, 2011, 07:57:45 AM

Saving cap space to retain players, what an interesting thought.  So, when Dominick signs the guys who he will be wanting to keep as buccaneers - what are we using now - Freeman's class, McCoy's class and this year's class with Clayborn and Bowers... are the bucs going to stop drafting because they are out of money?  This is ludicrous - good teams make salary every year - and the better the team the harder the choice on who to keep and who to cut.  They have to decided who to keep and who to cut every year.  It happens - NFL teams - successful ones - have to do this every year.  The do it by watching their budget on an annual basis.

The implication here is if the bucs/Dominick keep drafting well the bucs will run out of money to keep the players they want to keep ... has anyone ever seen that happen in the NFL...

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#12 : July 31, 2011, 08:52:38 AM

Saving cap space to retain players, what an interesting thought.  So, when Dominick signs the guys who he will be wanting to keep as buccaneers - what are we using now - Freeman's class, McCoy's class and this year's class with Clayborn and Bowers... are the bucs going to stop drafting because they are out of money?  This is ludicrous - good teams make salary every year - and the better the team the harder the choice on who to keep and who to cut.  They have to decided who to keep and who to cut every year.  It happens - NFL teams - successful ones - have to do this every year.  The do it by watching their budget on an annual basis.

The implication here is if the bucs/Dominick keep drafting well the bucs will run out of money to keep the players they want to keep ... has anyone ever seen that happen in the NFL...

Well put, It amazes me more people do not understand this.

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#13 : July 31, 2011, 10:45:41 AM

there's also a short term implication to this methodology

See what they have in camp and the preseason (both from an execution and injury standpoint) -and  fill holes with 2nd tier players (via FA and Trades)

Hell - market FA's can't even practice until the fourth of August...


Go get Bridgewater.   Do what it takes.

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#14 : July 31, 2011, 11:00:27 AM

Except for the fact that numbers say that only Freeman and Williams will be earning those next contracts. The fans have to understand that this is not about the Bucs, the money made here goes to pay off the other debt and buy players for the team the Bucs ownership likes and cares about. Don't believe for a second that ANY OF THE MONEY saved this year will EVER be re-invested in the team. It is a cash grab for Man U PERIOD!

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