Bucs GM Jason Licht spoke to the media, PewterReport.com included, on Tuesday afternoon at the NFL owners meeting in Orlando. Licht touched on a number of subjects, including on why the Buccaneers were so active in free agency. Read the full press conference here.
The NFL owners meetings are taking place in Orlando this year and PewterReport.com is in attendance. On Tuesday general manager Jason Licht spoke to the media and shared his thoughts on a number of subjects. You can read a full transcript below.
(On if the Buccaneers have spoken to Mike Williams)
“Yes Lovie actually caught up with Mike and the good news is Mike is healthy so everything is fine there. We are still gathering the facts on what happened before we address it and talk about it.”(On if it is tough to blame the victim)
“Yeah, right now until we learn more we are going to give him the benefit of the doubt.”(On reports that the wound required three stitches)
“That is even more detail than I know. I have been running around with meetings here. I just knew that he was healthy and that our primary concern. So he is fine.”(On how disappointed the organization is in Williams)
“I think I said earlier, I would like to not see him in the headlines, but we will just take it case by case and see until we find out the full details.”(On if there will be discipline forthcoming)
“Well like I said as we figure out, and get all the details then we will make the decisions based after that.”(On the status of Carl Nicks for 2014)
“Still hopeful. A different case than Mike Williams but, we are gathering all the information we have with the doctors we have sent him to. He has been rehabbing, things look promising, but we are crossing our fingers and hoping for the best.”(On his first free agency as a general manager)
“It was a real exciting year, Lovie Smith and our staffs and the Glazer family were all onboard, and we came up with a plan. We thought it would be unfair to ask the fans to be patient with us. We wanted to go out and sign as many good players as we could to help our football team be more competitive this year. And strive to win a championship this year. Not go back with a, ‘Hey give us a couple years.’ We want to do it as soon as we can. The fans deserve it. I found out in a two-month period that these fans are so passionate in Tampa. So we want players that are just as passionate as the fans and think we succeeded with that at least.”
(On the importance of the team's offseason workouts and mini-camps)
“Very important, (in) one week you can install quite a bit of your offense and defense and get things up and running so when we go to training camp, it is a full go.”(On who the starters are at guard)
"We’ll go with the guys that are on the roster right now and we have them compete and they’re competing for starting spots. So it’s Jamon [Meredith], Oniel [Cousins], and we still have the draft coming up. There’s still a possibility of adding someone down the road here, depends on who becomes available, who’s out there. We’re going to give everybody that’s on the roster right now a chance to win that job." (On newly signed CB Mike Jenkins role)
"He’s going to compete for a starting job. We do like Johnthan Banks, too. The amount of time that you play nickel, it’s upwards of 60-percent or more at times, so those guys, all three of our corners, are considered starters in our book." (On if there will be more free agency additions)
"I think we just need to continue to add good football players. The receiver subject comes up a lot. We’d like to add depth at numerous positions, but that’s one of them." (On how the kick returner position will be addressed)
"I wish we could have addressed everything in free agency. Here we signed all these guys and we’re still getting asked questions even in the building, staff members, 'Hey, what about this. We’re like, OK.' But the pockets are getting sort of empty right now. We’ll still go down every road, turn over every stone at that position as well." (On reports that safety Dashon Goldson has hired a private tackling coach)
"Hey, if it works, then I’m all for it." (On his thoughts about proposed rules changes)
"They vote tomorrow. So far, everything that’s been proposed has made sense. This is my first meeting, so I’ll kind of defer to Lovie on those things. But so far, everything has made sense. I’m actually in favor of the review, anything is under review, we’ve been talking about that for a while, that’s the main one. At least for me that would be a good adjustment to me." (On his first draft
upcoming in May)
"Same type of feeling I had going into my first free agency. Just really excited. Not nervous at all. The staff has done a great job getting everything prepared and we still have another month to watch tape and finalize everything. We just wish we had more picks." (On signing free agents who weren’t starters before)
"In some of those cases, they’re coming from a team where there’s established players at that position. You know, it’s not Anthony Collins’ fault that they have Whitworth starting at left tackle and he’s a mainstay there. But when he was asked to play he did a great job, played very well. So you have to give a guy a chance. There is some risk involved, but I’m not afraid to take a risk and neither is Lovie. So we’re rolling to dice maybe a little bit but I think he’s a great player."
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