When it was announced that the Buccaneers would be signing safety T.J. Ward, the question then became who he was going to replace on the roster the day after cuts had been finalize.

We now know who that will be in the form of a trade.

The details of the trade are the Bucs sending safety J.J. Wilcox and a 2019 7th to the Pittsburgh Steelers for a 2018 6th rounder.

Wilcox was only in Tampa for the duration of the offseason and the preseason after signing a two-year deal worth $8.5 million last March. Since then, he’s been running with the second team alongside rookie Justin Evans.

With the swap of Wilcox and Ward, it’s clear that the Bucs were hoping they were getting a player who could push himself as a potential starter more. They clearly didn’t see that with Wilcox.

After all that, the Bucs essentially picked up Ward and a 6th round pick in exchange for Wilcox, a 7th round pick and about 900,000 more money they’re spending at the position.

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: trevor@pewterreport.com
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surferdudes
3 years ago

Getting a former pro bowler, instead of a second stringer. This was a very savoy move.

Morgan
Morgan
Reply to  surferdudes
3 years ago

Healthy Wilcox >Injured Ward

Plank
3 years ago

Nice, thanks Steelers.

Iowabucfan
3 years ago

Nice job Mr. Licht!

CDNBUCSFAN
3 years ago

Nice job Mr.Licht! You offload a guy (and his cap hit) who would have played backup minutes for a starter who is a glue guy in the locker room. Impressive.

Clearwater Buc
Clearwater Buc
3 years ago

The Bucs are no longer on the hook for Wilcox’s contract, right? So did we get that $8.5 million back on our salary cap?

macabee
Reply to  Clearwater Buc
3 years ago

Yes we do, but not quite that much. Per Spotrac, J.J. Wilcox signed a 2 year, $6,250,000 contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including $3,125,000 guaranteed, and an average annual salary of $3,125,000. In 2017, Wilcox will earn a base salary of $2,125,000 and a incentive bonus of $250,000, while carrying a cap hit of $2,375,000 and a dead cap value of $2,125,000. This contact now belongs to the Steelers. The Bucs signed S TJ Ward for 4mil base with upside to make 5mil. Net, net they signed a pro bowler for an additional 900K or 1.9mil if Ward makes… Read more »

Timbuc2
3 years ago

Come on people, this was a stupid move! Did you see Wilcox play in the Preseason? He was clearly the surest tackler that we had back there. We went from having the hardest hitting duo of safeties in the division to back to hoping that Conte doesn’t get any plays thrown his way. Better yet, or get ran over by a running back which has happened several times. I don’t like it and you can’t tell me that they thought of Wilcox as 6th round talent or they wouldn’t have signed him. Sorry but the curtain got the best of… Read more »

BigSombrero
Reply to  Timbuc2
3 years ago

Whoa! Fire Licht for trading a backup safety who was great at tackling other backups? I think that is a bit harsh. I will take the savvy former pro bowl player who is on a short term deal while he provides more veteran leadership at the safety spot.

jp414
Reply to  Timbuc2
3 years ago

Typical type of ridiculous overreaction in the face of sudden change. The truth is…nobody will know whether this was a great move or a complete Keystone Kops bungle until at least halfway through the season, and more likely until season’s end.

Let’s see how well Ward does in the TB defense, and how much playing time and impact Wilcox has in Pittsburgh. Might want to save the over-the-top ‘sky is falling’ comments until then. Unless…your only concern is to see how many responses you get when you make comments like this, way too early.

EastEndBoy
Reply to  Timbuc2
3 years ago

I have generally been the realist when it comes to Licht’s personnel moves. I haven’t given hoards of praise (like some) for magically selecting Mike Evans, Jameis Winston, VHIII and OJ Howard in the 1st round along with every “big board” in the country, but I have given him ample praise for acquiring guys like Cameron Brate, Ali Marpet, Kwon Alexander (with appropriate credit to Lovie Smith for that pick too). I think overall he has done rather poorly on his subtraction decisions, but no more so than other GMs. Generally, when it comes to personnel I think Licht (and… Read more »

TBAtlas
3 years ago

Let’s just hope Ward has still got it moving forward. “Former” Pro Bowl is a backwards looking perspective.

scubog
3 years ago

Just a few questions:

1.) “Will it take half a season for him to learn the scheme like it did the players last season?”
2.) “How long will it take Ward to adjust to the heat and humidity?”
3.) “Will T.J. purchase Peyton’s #43?”

Naplesfan
Reply to  scubog
3 years ago

It’s easier for a single new guy to learn the defense than it is for an entire defensive unit to be on the same point on the learning curve simultaneously.

GermanBucsFan
3 years ago

Hi Trevor, as a Bucs Fan from Germany I want to thank you for your great articles and detailed analyses of our our team and the game itself. I am following the Bucs since about 5 years, but do not have the background in tactics and and different positions as most of the American fans have. So thanks to your work, I am able to watch the games in a hole different way now and can enjoy that great sport even more. Looking forward to a great season (with a lot of sleepless nights) and more stuff from you and… Read more »

seat26
3 years ago

The real story here is that we are shifting Safeties around, and Evans is not even being mentioned. I wonder short of injury if Evans plays at all this year outside of special teams.