One big question on the eve of free agency has now been answered if a report on Monday is accurate.

It was announced on Monday that the Bucs are going to place the franchise tag on Donovan Smith, per a report from Rick Stroud. The team had until the March 5 deadline to use the franchise tag on Smith. PewterReport.com had previously reported in February that Smith would likely get the franchise tag in an SR’s Fab 5 column.

The franchise tag would keep Smith in Tampa for at least 2019 while paying him the average of the top five salaries at his position, somewhere around $14.5 million. Tampa Bay general manager Jason Licht and director of football administration Mike Greenberg are continuing talks with Smith’s representatives on a long-term deal.

Smith’s play hasn’t necessarily been the model of consistency over his four years with the Bucs, but he’s played in every single game since being drafted in 2015 and finding a left tackle isn’t an easy task for NFL teams.

In 2018, Smith allowed 5.5 sacks, a career-high, but just a half sack over his five allowed in 2015 and 2017, and limited his penalties to a career-low at just six penalties for 50 yards.

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52 COMMENTS

  1. He’s worth the tag on a prove it deal. Maybe with a new O-Line coach will light a fire in his ass.

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    • In his a$$, under his a$$, anywhere in the vicinity of his a$$. I get your point Easy, one way or another, we’ve gotta get this guy going. Please allow me to have a little fun with your post. I’m still trying to visualize what you said. lol. Go Easy, Go Bucs!

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      • That does sound incredibly uncomfortable

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    • The new OL coach is Joe Gilbert. I haven’t found out much about him so far. Does anyone have any insight on him? The only thing I know is that he is a different coach.
      ________________
      Go Bucs!!!!!!

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      • Google is my friend, yours too! lol This from Bucs website.

        https://www.buccaneers.com/team/coaches-roster/joe-gilbert

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  2. Best lineman the Bucs have. Glad they franchised him and I’m even happier that the long term extension talks are going well according to Rick Stroud. This could turn into a long term deal any day.

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    • You’re right, “best lineman we have”. Marpet is a total scrub. Get outta here with that nonsense. He may have the tools to be our best guy up front, but production based on game plan is what counts when you’re labeling somebody as the best.

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      • I didn’t say Marpet was a scrub. Marpet keeps getting moved. Why is that Johnny Football?

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      • For all your whining, just like the other superfans on here, you sure forget the reason the Left Tackle gets paid the most. He’s routinely going against the best pass rusher on the opposing team and without help most times. You guys are junior varsity on your football knowledge.

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        • There’s a difference between best and most important. Just because you get paid the most doesn’t mean you’re the best. Zach Martin makes $10 mill per year for example.
          Marpet didn’t have help on most passing downs either due to the weakness at right guard. And in today’s NFL there is an added emphasis to pressure from interior defenders. Look at the guys just in our division that Marpet is going up against too (Jarett and Rankins) as well as being asked to go to the second level and block (Kuechly, Shaq, D Davis, and Deion Jones)

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          • And Marpet was routinely having to help the “the best Olineman we have” because he consistently gets beat inside.

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          • Marpet is decent at guard. I really like the player and person. I am just glad Donovan is getting tagged while they work on his long term extension. I believe he’s the best lineman the Bucs have.

            I know the fans on here won’t like him at the end of 2019 any more than they did at the end of 2018, no matter how good he truly is.

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        • All my whining? LMAO… What whining, pray tell, are you referring to? Honestly, I only brought Marpet into the conversation because you stated that Donovan Smith is our best offensive lineman. Marpet was our best while Jensen was #2, even with the stupid penalties. D Smith is an easy #3. Just because he plays LT doesn’t automatically make him our best frontline guy

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          • I believe Mike Evans is the best Bucs wide receiver even though he had more drops than Adam Humphries, Chris Godwin, and DeSean Jackson.

            I also believe Donovan Smith is the best Bucs lineman, even though he gave up 5.5 sacks.

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  3. Yea this move really shouldnt shock anyone, this has been the speculation since the offseason started

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    • Thought they only did it because SR suggested it in his Fab 5 column….. 😉

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  4. Good. Hes already lazy, and an extension will just make it worse. This gives us another year to find his replacement

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    • Lazy? No, no, no. You’re thinking of Gerald McCoy. He plays 64% of snaps but is only effective on 2% of them and is gonna make 13 million next year. That’s lazy.

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      • Where do you get that 2% from?? Are sacks the only time he is effective? Mike Smith’s scheme was terrible for his production. So in that scheme if he’s taking up multiple blocks and allowing Kwon to make the tackle, technically he is being effective. If he misdirects the running backs hole he is being effective. JV analysis.
        Todd Bowles defense should allow him to do what he does back. Attack and get off the snap quickly and attack his 1 gap.

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        • It was lazy of me to not explain it.
          Bucs defense faced 534 passing attempts and 426 rushing attempts last year. McCoy had 17 solo tackles, 6 of which were sacks. He had 13 QB pressures. Many of those pressures were still completions for the other team so I didn’t count them as a win for him.

          That’s 17 plays out of 960 total possible. It translates to 2%.

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          • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U046WMQ9Ie8&t=391s

            Here’s the Steeler game. You tell me who was the best offensive lineman. Also, watch McCoy on defense. They ran right at him again and again to close the game out. He missed a sack at the end and Big Ben completed a 20 yard pass to SmithSchuster. McCoy gets credit for a QB pressure and hit, but guess what? Big Ben gets credit for the first down and the win.

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          • While your math is spot on, your argument remains invalid. Mike’s Smith’s system is designed to have the three-technique occupy space in order to open things up for linebackers and DEs. McCoy did his job. Were there plays his outright missed? Yes. But he fulfilled his duty on a lot more than 2% of his snaps

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          • Im not gonna defend Mike Smith, or Lovie Smith, or Leslie Frasier, or any of the other many defensive coaches that have worked with GMC. Im just watching the tape and the game. Did you watch the Steelers highlights I linked? It was McCoys best game of the season and he was not very good. Watch the highlights and focus on him. It’s painful man.

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  5. The Bucs better not give the worst Tackle they have a long term contract! His sack total would have been a lot higher if Jameis and Fritz had not been so talented at escaping tackles in the backfield, and his holding of speed rushers who got around him and if anyone counted the pressures he allowed he would not have been franchised. All the penalties when the refs finally called holding on him killed drives that would have given us more wins! Now Smith won’t worry about being fired and will continue his lazy ways. This certainly doesn’t send a message by BA of holding players accountable or showing good judgment!

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  6. Just watching the Alliance of American Football I have already seen a number of big LTs a lot more talented than D. Smith that the Bucs could have just picked up for next season much, much cheaper than 14.5 million dollars. Birmingham also has a monster of a MLB just in case someone else snatches up White before us. Moreover, San Antonio, Birmingham, and Orlando have much better place kickers than our short range Place Kicker Sanchez, and they all have better punters than we do. I sure hope Licht has at least one scout following the talent being shown by the AAF games. It just seems from past picks our scouts go to the Senior Bowl and East West Shrine Bowl to form their opinions and that is reflected in many of the players they interview at the Combine and end up drafting. I.e. Cappa and Marpet etc. (Marpet played Center in the Senior Bowl which was the basis for Marpet being moved by Licht to Center).

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    • So why are those LTs playing in the AAF instead of the NFL? I guess every NFL GM doesn’t know what they’re doing.

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      • He must be forgetting that these AAF LTs are also guarding against AAF DLinemen.

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  7. This is no surprise I was 95% sure this is what would happen. They keep saying he has potential to be one of best in league and every year he is lack luster. So if the talent is there but he’s not playing great that means lazy and or no heart. You can’t coach effort or heart. You can blame coaches, but Marpet has same coaches and he’s more consistent. Anyways whatever I think they should drafted his replacement, but what do us fans know. I’ll be shocked if he plays much better this year but honestly hope he does. Average at best for 14 million is dumb to me as a fan. The Winston haters will say he’s in same boat and I so no he isn’t. He hasn’t had a decent defense, O line or run game or coaching. If he doesn’t improve a lot this year and defense is at least middle of pack and run game is middle pack at least then I’ll start to wonder if he will become better than average ever.

    The difference is as a fan I am routing for Smith to improve and live up to expectations. If he succeeds then the team and offense have better chance to succeed. I don’t want him to fail and fully expect him to fail just so I can say see how smart I am i was right! Lol.

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  8. Despite the Franchising of D. Smith I hope the Bucs will take Washington’s LT later in the draft to play RT, but when Cappa gets Developed to hold down RT the Washington LT will be able to take over Smith’s position when BA needs to bench him for his many mistakes during games and continued laziness. Now if Smith let’s a speed rusher by him that injures Jameis and whatever backup QB we come up with can’t win like Fritz can, I will have more to say about this Franchise mistake!

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    • Who is this Fritz you keep referring to? Fritz the Cat? Do you mean Fitz? As in, FitzPatrick? ITS F-I-T-Z. No “R” Wake up McFly!

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    • Washington’s LT is still in college. Trey Adams, if he recovers from his back surgery he should be a 1st RD pick next year. Washington’s RT is entering the Draft and is projected to be a day 2 pick and play RT in the NFL. However, Washington State’s LT is projected to be a 1st Rd pick and shouldn’t fall further than Houston. He probably won’t be there when we are picking in the 2nd or 3rd Rd.

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  9. Well that’s a massive overpay. The Bucs are kings at not addressing past mistakes and letting them compound. Ready for another season of Jameis running for his life half a second after the snap.

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    • Most of the pressure came from the right side of the line. The Bucs know that and that’s why they’re moving Benenoch to RT, and putting Cappa at RG. That’s also why they’re KEEPING Donovan Smith. Lol.

      The only past mistake they need to address is having Gerald McCoy walk the plank.

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      • Shoo troll. Don’t you have a bridge to guard?

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        • Troll? Im celebrating the good news.

          Not that the fans on here would know good news.

          You shock jock parrots are a bunch of jokers who are pining for a 43 year old kicker, a 32 year old washed up defensive tackle, a way-past-his-prime 33 year old free agent guard and a 31 year old running back who’s fast as molasses.

          Yep you got it all figured out Dongs.

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          • Go celebrate on your own comment and don’t act like you know me. Half this thread is now your nonsense just as you’ve monopolized most of the other comment sections on PR.

            Rest assured, I could not give one single shit about your opinion.

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          • Triggered? Lol.

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  10. I’m okay with this. Move him to RT. Trade down, get more picks, take LT Andre Dillard in round 1.

    Dillard/Iupati/Jensen/Marpet/D Smith

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    • So, you think it makes sense to franchise the left tackle at top 5 money, then move him to the right side, then replace him with a rookie that hasn’t done a single thing in the NFL, while also paying top dollar to a 32 year old Right Guard and moving him to the Left side?

      Please stop drinking your bathwater.

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      • It’s for one year, it’s a prove it year for Smith. He is not a LT, he needs to be moved to the right side. He’s not worth LT money long term. He get’s LT money this season, but moves to the right to prove he should get an extension.

        Dillard is the best pass protecting tackle in the draft and he is a true LT. His stock is rising with Senior Bowl and Combine performances. Come draft he’s likely a top 15 pick. Trade down, get more picks, take him in 12-15 range after moving down.

        Iupati has played most of his career at LG. Marpet needs to move back to RG, where he started his NFL career and was All Rookie Team. Iupati will not cost top dollar.

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  11. I checked 3 sites no one has him ranked in the top 20 tackles . Bucs already in cash crunch give Smith 15 million in 2019. TOP 5 MONEY!
    This is the Jason Licht at his best.
    I can,t wait for his next move.
    Cap is looming over Tampa

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    • Cap goes up by $11 million in a week. That gives Tampa all the money they need to sign rookies and a kicker.

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      • If ALL we needed were rookies and a kicker then that would be great.

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  12. This move and comments from Bruce Arians seems to guarantee to me the Bucs draft a Tackle in the 1st. Not to replace D.Smith, to replace Demar but with the added insurance of being able to replace DSmith if things dont work out after this year. At least thats what i hope happens.

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    • If Jason Licht takes a tackle in the first round, he should be fired on the spot. It would be just as bad as taking a kicker in the second round with this defensive class and the fact that the Bucs were 29th in defense last year.

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      • This defensive class is extremely deep, which means quality players can still be found in rounds 2-4 if they decide to go OL early.

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      • If they dont go Tackle they will have no Tackles after this year if Donovan Smith doesn’t work. Also, yes the team was terrible in defense which mean its gonna take a lot more than 1 player to fix. Start by fixing the defense scheme. Adversely, the offense had trouble running short yardage and in the redzone. Improving at OL and RB can guarantee better production there. More time of possession, less time defense on field. And Jameis will have more time and a play action. Win win win.

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  13. Probably makes our choice with the #5 pick a little easier. The Bucs need to swim with the tide. Take advantage of one of the strongest Defensive drafts in recent history. If we trade down and pick up a couple of 2nd round picks and can still get a great DE or Linebacker, let’s do it. If not let’s get the best Defensive lineman available at #5.

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  14. Lol is the bigsombrero trying to take over buc ass bobs spot as the number one troll on here? Come on man, leave that to our boy bob.

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    • It’s funny as hell. I think sombrero might be trying to take BOB’s spot at the top. Dude is even arguing with BOB when BOB said something that made sense. Still came across as rambling, but I knew what he was saying and I agreed with him….. That felt weird

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    • Had too much time on my hands yesterday. I just don’t get the fans on here sometimes. I just prefer production over reputation and don’t get the hate for Smith, but love for McCoy.

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  15. Extending Smith at top 5 money would be a perpetuation of the strategy that has deposited us at the bottom of the division during Bust Licht’s tenure – drafting and paying players based on the hope they can deliver more or differently than their history and tape had proven them capable of.

    We’re in this predicament because Bust Licht has failed to invest premium picks into the OL. When JPP and GMC age out next year it will be apparent to those in denial he has done the same to the DL.

    In both cases that key, foundational failure has undermined the efforts of the rest of the team, likely even the coaches. Until it’s addressed we’re likely to continue underachieving what is at least our theoretical potential.

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