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ryanbuc1

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: March 01, 2009, 01:30:26 AM

Per St. Pete Times..

Clayton lands 5-year, $26-million deal with Bucs
Receiver Michael Clayton was in Minneapolis about to board a flight to Seattle late Saturday night when the Bucs finally punched his ticket back to Tampa Bay.

Clayton agreed to terms on a 5-year contract that  could be worth as much as $26-million if certain performance bonuses are met, according to people familiar with the negotiations.

More importantly, the Bucs agreed to include $10.5-million of guarantees in the deal.

Despite having just two touchdowns since his rookie season, Clayton was among the more coveted free agent receivers when the signing period began Friday.

He visited the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings over the weekend and was headed to Seattle, where Seahawks president Tim Ruskell was set to make Clayton an offer that would've likely ended his career in Tampa Bay.

But general manager Mark Dominik stepped up before Clayton had to board a flight to Seattle. He will spend the night in Minneapolis before returning to Tampa Sunday to begin the second chapter of his career in Tampa.

Clayton's signing means the Bucs will return both starting receivers for the 2009 season. Antonio Bryant signed his franchise player tender, a one-year $9.88-million deal.

Clayton was the second free agent Saturday to reach an agreement to return to the Bucs. Earlier in the day, safety Will Allen signed a one-year, $2.3-million contract.

The new contract averages about $4.8-million per season and could be worth more if Clayton reaches certain performance incentives for receptions and making the Pro Bowl.

The Bucs denied a report Saturday that receiver T.J. Houshmanzadeh is scheduled to visit the team. Tampa Bay had expressed some interest in Steelers receiver Nate Washington, but it's unclear how Clayton's new deal would impact their efforts to land another free agent receiver.

The 6-foot-4, 215-pound Clayton was a first round pick by the Bucs in 2004 and led all rookies in receiving with 80 catches for 1,193 yards and seven touchdowns. But injuries cut into his production as he struggled to catch just two touchdown passes over the next four seasons.

Bucs receivers coach Richard Mann has been instrumental in convincing the Bucs to retain Clayton, who caught 38 passes for 484 yards and a touchdown last season.

Mann argued that Clayton is willing to do 'the dirty things,' like blocking in the running game. He also noted that Clayton fell into Jon Gruden's doghouse and received fewer opportunities with the emergence of Joey Galloway and later Bryant.

It's likely that Clayton would have received a better offer from the Seahawks and Dominik knew it. That's why the deal was likely reached  just prior to Clayton boarding a plane to Seattle.

But during the free agent process, Clayton's representatives remained in close contact with Dominik and made it clear his first preference was to remain in Tampa Bay.


BucsMagic64

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#1 : March 01, 2009, 01:31:20 AM

That's too much money for the production he's had over the last four years. With all this cap I won't complain, but I'm not real happy over this. I didn't want him back.

FireThemCannons

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#2 : March 01, 2009, 01:32:14 AM

wow i like him, but not for almost 5 million a year

michael89156

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#3 : March 01, 2009, 01:33:17 AM

Not a bad deal...............incentive laden.  

jerseybucsfan

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#4 : March 01, 2009, 01:33:26 AM

That's complete lunacy. If it's anywhere near true, it's the worst terms of any contract this franchise has EVER signed.

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cvillebucfan

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#5 : March 01, 2009, 01:34:08 AM

AMAZING!!!!!

But he's a good blocker............LOL



Baghead #2

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#6 : March 01, 2009, 02:12:44 AM

But Jersey look how much things have changed, trust me I've been more vocal than anyone regarding that change and what I think of it but it's still change. You can't exactly predict what a player will or wont do when he's about to play in a new system with a new play caller and a new QB. For all we know he could explode for 1300/13. Doubtful yes but not impossible. If Reidel Anthony can go 51/708/7 one year, then trust me....Clayton can match it.

bigbucco

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#7 : March 01, 2009, 01:34:54 AM

That is garbage. Too much money, even the guaranteed part. The guy lost half a step after he ate his way through his first pro offseason ... and he only had half a step to begin with. If you watched him carefully the last couple of years, he just doesn't get open and his hands mysteriously went stone-cold after that rookie aberration. Michael Clayton is not a No.2 receiver.

I'm shaking my head at this one.

michael89156

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#8 : March 01, 2009, 01:35:06 AM

They could always release him after a year if he sucks.

michael89156

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#9 : March 01, 2009, 02:11:52 AM

No, he's not a good No. 2 or 3 WR.
Guys with 32, 33, 22 and 38 catches don't meet that criteria. He's Bryant Johnson, who proved to be an OVERRATED No. 3 WR.
That means Clayton would be a good No. 4 WR. Good No. 4 WRs don't get anything near to this in $.








Your basing it on past performance, the reason they loaded the contract with incentives is there looking for future performance.   Hey you might be right, he might stink it up in 2009, but its worth the gamble I think.

jerseybucsfan

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#10 : March 01, 2009, 01:36:59 AM

That's not good enough, Michael. There was no justification to bring him back and under these terms our inexperienced FO got taken to the cleaners.
Some of you say don't pay Ward (a 1,000-yard RB who ran for 5.6 YPC) this type of money and yet we paid it to a guy who's a below-average No. 3 WR?
That's mismanagement of the highest degree.

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Boid Fink

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#11 : March 01, 2009, 01:37:44 AM

Clayton just fleeced Dominik.

And when Clayton stinks it up again next year, how many of you Clayton apologists FINALLY take your serving of rotten crow?


michael89156

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#12 : March 01, 2009, 01:38:40 AM

I want to see him in the new system......then we find out if it was Gruden or not.

cvillebucfan

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#13 : March 01, 2009, 01:39:00 AM

Clayton just undressed, de-panted dominik. Totally pulled his pants down to the ankles on this one.



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michael89156

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#14 : March 01, 2009, 01:40:30 AM

You guys saw the list of teams after him...........guy has value. 
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