Cover 3 is a weekly feature column written by PewterReport.com’s Tampa Bay Bucs beat writer Trevor Sikkema published every Tuesday. The column, as its name suggests, comes in three phases: a statistical observation, an in-depth film breakdown, and a “this or that” segment where the writer asks the reader to chose between two options.

But this week we switch it up a bit.

Bucs Free Agency Preview

Hello? Is this thing still on? Man, I have been slacking on the Cover 3’s lately. For that, I apologize. But, as many of you all know, I’ve been trying to do my thing over at The Draft Network, as well, as draft season is really kicking into gear. Many of you have shown a ton of support to me and the guys over there. For that, I am thankful, but rest assured I am still a part of PewterReport.com and will still be covering the Buccaneers in 2019.

So right now it’s time to get back to business; it’s time to get back to Bucs.

We’re sort of at an awkward time in the NFL football calendar. We’re on the eve of the Super Bowl and Lord knows the only reason us Tampa natives tune in is to watch the Patriots lose – which they don’t do enough, right? The Senior Bowl has come and gone, but there is still a month or so until the Combine, so there isn’t as much draft hype as there will be in a few weeks. So when I sat back and tried to put myself in the shoes of you all to think about what would be a good topic to write, it came to me pretty quickly.

Bucs free agency.

This free agency period is going to have a big impact on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers – as will each free agency period during Bruce Arians’ tenure, multiplying in importance depending on how short his time in Tampa ends up being. The Buccaneers aren’t in the worst cap shape in the league, but their money to play with this season is not nearly what it was the previous two or three seasons, at least not yet.

Bucs director of football administration Mike Greenberg and GM Jason Licht
Bucs director of football administration Mike Greenberg and GM Jason Licht – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

As it stands right now, the Buccaneers have the fourth-least cap space in the league at just over $12 million. Of the three teams with less wiggle room than them, the Vikings have just $1.2 million and then the final two are the Jaguars and the Eagles, who have minus-$10.1 million and minus-$16.2 million, respectively.

But the Buccaneers do have quite a few big decisions to make when it comes to their free agents in 2019. Let’s look at all of those first, then hit the explanations for the ones that could play a big role in the future of what this franchise does.

Exclusive Rights Free Agents

S Isaiah Johnson
OL Mike Liedtke

First of all, what are exclusive right free agents?

Exclusive-rights free agents (ERFAs) are players with two or fewer seasons in the league whose contracts have expired. The team they finished the previous season can tender a qualifying offer, which is a one-year contract usually at the league minimum, and if they do, the player has no negotiating rights with any other teams and must choose to either sign the tender with the team or sit out the season.

These kinds of moves are usually made on depth players who went undrafted. If you get drafted at any point, you will be signing a four-year deal. First-round picks can be signed up to five years with an option attached, but anything beyond that gets a four-year deal.

Offensive lineman Michael Liedtke and safety Isaiah Johnson both fall under the undrafted umbrella. Both of them returning to the Buccaneers next season completely depends on what the new coaching staff thinks of them. But, stay or go, they will be signing for the league minimum.

Restricted Free Agents

RB Peyton Barber
S Andrew Adams
CB DeVante Harris
LB Devante Bond
CB Javien Elliott
OT Leonard Wester

Restricted free agents (RFAs) are players who have been in the league for three seasons and whose contracts have expired. RFAs can negotiate with other teams like UFAs can, however, if a player accepts an offer from a new team, their old team will have the right to match the offer and retain the player. If the old team decides not to match the offer, they could receive draft pick compensation for losing that player, depending on the level of the qualifying offer made.

Due to the after effects of signing an RFA away from a team, these moves don’t happen often. Most of the time the player would have to be really good for a team to want to pay them a big contract as well as lose a draft pick for them, and then if the player is that good, it’s not likely the original team would choose not to match, hence why it doesn’t happen often.

Bucs RB Peyton Barber
Bucs RB Peyton Barber – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

The only two players who I see as safe in that group are running back Peyton Barber and offensive tackle Leonard Wester. There is a good chance the Bucs choose to let those other players walk. The turnover on the coaching staff was likely foretelling of the potential turnover throughout the roster. After being in the league for so long, Arians and defensive coordinator Todd Bowles will likely fill the roster with guys they know who they could pick up later in free agency and even into training camp.

Unrestricted Free Agents

OT Donovan Smith
LB Kwon Alexander
CB Brent Grimes
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
WR Adam Humphries
S Chris Conte
RB Jacquizz Rodgers
QB Ryan Griffin
LB Adarius Taylor
LS Garrison Sanborn
K Cairo Santos
LB Kevin Minter
LB Cam Lynch
DL Rakeem Nunez-Roches
CB Josh Shaw

Now this is the grouping of players that could determine a lot for the Buccaneers in 2019. Being an unrestricted free agent means that the team you’re coming from has no control over whether you stay or go outside of what they can offer you, minus, of course, slapping a player with the franchise tag. The only player that I could see the Buccaneers doing that to is left tackle Donovan Smith if they aren’t comfortable giving him a long-term deal, but even then I would be skeptical of that happening. The Buccaneers haven’t used the franchise tag on anyone since they did back in 2012 with Connor Barth (which was a low-end tag), and have only used it twice since 2007.

As a 26-year old, healthy left tackle with a ton of experience under his belt and not missing a start due to injury, Smith will likely command Top 5 tackle money in free agency because offensive linemen always get overpaid in free agency. The Top 5 paid tackles in the league – Taylor Lewan, Nate Solder, Jake Matthews, Trent Williams and Russell Okung – make anywhere from $13.3-$16 million per year. Smith also has the advantage of coming into a free agency pool with not a lot of other alluring options for teams to sign. Outside of New England’s Trent Brown, Smith may be viewed as the top left tackle in free agency.

Because of that, his price will be more in his hands than say the hands of a saturated market. If there were a handful of left tackle option in free agency, Smith’s price might be closer to a number relative to both his strengths but also his weaknesses. But since there isn’t much out there beyond him, a team would likely overpay him.

Bucs LT Donovan Smith
Bucs LT Donovan Smith – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

With just $12 million in cap space, as it stands right now, signing Smith would require some moving parts. All of that might make it seem like an obvious for the Bucs to be open to moving on, but with right tackle Demar Dotson aging and right guard Caleb Benenoch not playing up to par, asking a new head coach to replace three offensive linemen in one offseason is a tall – perhaps unreasonable – task. Keep that in mind, especially knowing Arians wants to win right away.

Middle linebacker Kwon Alexander is the next piece. It’s been reported that Alexander, who is coming off a torn ACL, is looking for a contract that will pay him between $10-$12 million per year. Only five inside linebackers in the NFL make more than $10 million per year: Benardrick McKinney, Eric Kendrick, Alec Ogletree, Bobby Wagner and Luke Kuechly. If you ask me, only two of those players are worth that much money, and it’s the last two guys on that list — who also make the most.

Is Alexander on their level? I would argue no. I think Alexander is a very good player that would fit well with Arians and Bowles both schematically and with attitude and mentally. He’s a guy Tampa Bay would like to retain, but not at that price on a long-term deal, especially coming off his injury. If Alexander is going to be signing a multi-year deal worth $10-$12 million dollar deal this offseason, it shouldn’t be in Tampa Bay.

Wide receiver Adam Humphries is the third main piece here. Humphries will not be anything higher than the third-best option the Buccaneers have in their passing attack – behind wide receiver Mike Evans, tight end O.J. Howard and wide receiver Chris Godwin. So how much do you pay your WR3/4? A little birdie told me not too long ago that Humphries was looking for something in the $7-$8 million per year dollar range when negotiations between his camp and the team opened up. That puts him on the same level as guys like Golden Tate, Mohammed Sanu, Marquise Goodwin, Robert Woods and Kenny Stills – some of those guys are No. 2 wide receivers.

Bucs WR Adam Humphries – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Bucs WR Adam Humphries – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

I’m not sure Hump is on the same level as those receivers, but there are also players like Tavon Austin, Michael Crabtree, Jordy Nelson and Albert Wilson who also make that much money that I would say Humphries is better than. Unfortunately for Hump, though, of the guys on that list he is both better and worse than, they are mostly No. 2 wide receivers on their respective teams.

Can the Bucs afford to spend that on their fourth-best option? I don’t think they can. Humphries would have to get down to the $5-$6 million dollar range for him to be worth it on this specific depth chart, if you ask me.

As for the rest, 35-year old cornerback Brent Grimes and 35-year old quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick are surely both gone, and if you ask me, backup quarterback Ryan Griffin should be, too. The Bucs had their chance to play Griffin. What good is a 28-year-old quarterback who has never played a single snap in an NFL regular season game? At that point, just sign a true vet.

I don’t see strong safety Chris Conte or running back Jacquizz Rodgers being brought back, either, and I think this coaching staff would choose to re-sign linebacker Kevin Minter over Adarius Taylor. Kicker Cairo Santos deserves to be brought back, but outside of him, I don’t see any easy returns for this team. The Bucs need to fill out their roster for training camp competition and depth, and perhaps because of that some of these guys stay. I’m sure some will — I’m sure some will.

But with a new coaching staff and new systems on both offense and defense, why keep guys from the old system if there are options out there that might know the offense and defense – and these coaches – better?

That brings us to the next page. Who should the Bucs target in free agency?

1
2
3
Previous article2019 Bucs Mock Draft Roundup 1.0
Next articleRapoport Expects Bucs To Consider Signing RB Hunt
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: [email protected]

66 COMMENTS

  1. I would like a big question answered that has been ignored every time I asked it last year I was told the Giants got rid of jpp because they went to a 3-4 this year the Bucs are going to a 3-4 Trevor said we got such a great deal because the Giants went to a 3-4. . In an objective way someone please answer that.

    +2
    -12
    Rating: -10. From 14 votes.
    Please wait...
    • I would say that Pierre-Paul became more expendable when the Giants went to a 3-4 just because you never know how an aging pass rusher is going to hold up/remain effective in a scheme change. But I think JPP showed he still has plenty left in the tank, even when the Bucs went a little multiple last year.

      Also, not a foregone thing that the Bucs are moving everything to 3-4. They’ll likely still play a lot of 4-man fronts. It will just likely have more 3-4/stand-up linebacker roles than we’ve seen from this team previously. If their best pass rusher does best from a 4-3, it’s not like they’re going to force him to change or trade him. Bowles will make sure he’s getting the most out of his best penetrator.

      I don’t think the Giants were as willing to cater to JPP — foolish on their end.

      +48
      0
      Rating: +48. From 48 votes.
      Please wait...
      • So what you’re saying is Todd Bowles is going to adapt his defense from a 3/4 to a 4-3 to accommodate jpp. My follow-up question is what do you think when Todd Bowles watches the Dallas game and sees Ezekiel Elliott running at the club on his hand jpp missing Time After Time except for the time Dak had the ball instead of Ezekiel

        +2
        -22
        Rating: -20. From 24 votes.
        Please wait...
        • BUC-ASS_BOB both Bruce Arians and Todd Bowles have said they’ll adapt the defense to what fits the talent they have available. So, it’s not a foregone conclusion the Bucs will run either a 3-4 or stick with a 4-3. Ultimately, what they do will be based on what kind of talent is on the team, as both the head coach and dc have said. In addition, as both Arians and Bowles have pointed out, teams in today’s NFL are in a nickel package, which necessitates a four-man defensive front, about 60-percent of the time. So, the Bucs will always have need for at least four, if not four, defensive linemen who can play with their hand in the dirt.

          +12
          0
          Rating: +12. From 12 votes.
          Please wait...
          • Mike Smith said EXACTLY the same thing about adapting to players strengths. They all say that. Its called coachspeak. Rarely do they do it the way the public thinks they will do it.

            +6
            -12
            Rating: -6. From 18 votes.
            Please wait...
  2. I want us to get Matthieu, Irving, and Bruce Irvin. I think those will be some nice additions to the secondary. Trade back with Jacksonville, or Denver and pick up extra picks and take Greedy Williams. Then use the 2 second round picks we have to address the right side of the offensive line, like David Edwards, Ben Powers, Michael Dieters, or Chris Lindstrom. I think that would be a good start.

    +19
    -3
    Rating: +16. From 22 votes.
    Please wait...
    • Ben Powers in the end of the second/early third round should be a very welcomed plan of attack. That dude is mean.

      +14
      0
      Rating: +14. From 14 votes.
      Please wait...
      • I like that pick a lot, and he’s a day 1 starter. He could help solidify that interior OL for several years.

        +5
        0
        Rating: +5. From 5 votes.
        Please wait...
      • Dillard/Powers/Jensen/Marpet/D Smith

        Please get this done Bucs

        +4
        -1
        Rating: +3. From 5 votes.
        Please wait...
    • Out of all those guys you mentioned only Mathieu plays in the secondary. J/s

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
      • Yea it was a typo, sorry

        +1
        0
        Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
        Please wait...
  3. The factor that becomes clearer to me year after year is that coaching is king. If you have mediocre coaching, it takes a truly great player to rise above it, but a great coach elevates even mediocre talent. Year after year I see fans bad mouthing the GM for signing or drafting players that turn out to be busts only to see that same player go to another team and play well for another coach. So for me, the trouble I have in both free agency as well as drafting is whether the coach we have on hand is good enough to develop the talent that he has. I said this about Warhop last year, was the talent that bad or was the coaching ineffective? At this point, it seems like Arians has assembled a good staff of teachers, but are they really that good? I guess we will find out next fall. I really have no idea who should stay and who should go (other than Jackson, I think he needs to go) but I do think we should trade Cam Brate. I love the guy to death, but he could bring another piece that we definitely need and give us some needed cap relief. At this point, while I acknowledge the need for depth, we also have several positions where the current talent is well below NFL average. Until we can shore up the starting positions, depth should be a secondary concern. I also think Auclair can be a good 2nd TE in place of Brate. Time to take a position of strength and use it to provide some relief at another position.

    +31
    -3
    Rating: +28. From 34 votes.
    Please wait...
    • I agree. It became obvious last year when Buckner got good results from the DL and Warhop couldn’t get his guys along the OL on the same page to save his life.

      +11
      0
      Rating: +11. From 11 votes.
      Please wait...
    • Arian’s usually uses 3 wide receivers and 1 tight end set.
      Trading Brate seems like a good call.

      +4
      -10
      Rating: -6. From 14 votes.
      Please wait...
      • Wrong about his sets. I remember Arians using Coby Fleener and Dwight Allen in Indy in a lot of two tight end sets in 2012. They had Reggie Wayne and TY Hilton at WR.

        Keeping Brate makes sense. Evans, Godwin, Brate, OJ, and (new)RB1 looks tough to beat to me. It would also help Winston since he relies on TEs (especially Brate) a lot.

        +20
        0
        Rating: +20. From 20 votes.
        Please wait...
    • The trading of Brate…..at first glance….looks like a good idea. But, I’ve heard many coaches and GMs say the number one ability if “availability” and sadly Howard has not finished the last 2 season on the active roster. If your stud TE is not available then you need that Brate type of player as insurance. I have not seen Auclair display that same ability.

      I do agree that the coaching has been suspect at best. You can’t see player after player never develop. Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn ever so ofter so no way can I believe that all these players that Licht has brought are that bad.

      +1
      0
      Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
      Please wait...
  4. Some off season moves/ideas to free up cap space with a new coaching staff.
    FA Shaw(one year prove it deal) RFA Harris(tender offer)
    FA Grimes(don’t sign) RFA Elliot(tender offer)
    FA Nunez-Roches(don’t sign) RFA Bond(tender offer)
    FA Santos(know what you have, 40 yards or under) RFA Barber(tender offer)
    FA Lynch(don’t sign) RFA Adams(tender offer)
    FA Taylor(don’t sign) RFA Wester(tender offer)
    FA Sanborn(if needed) ERFA Rivers(keep)
    FA Griffin(don’t sign) ERFA Ledbetter(keep)
    FA Fitzpatrick(don’t sign) ERFA Bullough(don’t sign)
    FA Rogers(don’t sign) ERFA Liedtke(keep)
    FA D.Smith(franchise tag) ERFA Johnson(keep)
    FA Humphries(re-sign?) Curry(draft trade/release)
    FA Minter(sign?) Allen(draft trade/release)
    FA Conte(don’t sign) McCoy(draft trade/release/restructure)
    FA Alexander(don’t sign) David(draft trade/release/restructure)
    Brate(draft trade(PATS)?/release/restructure)
    (most likely one TE set)
    Jackson(draft trade/release)
    Anger(release)
    Dotson(keep/release)
    Nelson(release)
    Unrein(release)
    E.Smith(keep/release)

    +3
    -8
    Rating: -5. From 11 votes.
    Please wait...
  5. If it were me, and it’s not, I would take a two year approach. Year one, I would TOTALLY fix the offense (Oline & RB) and the kicking game (PK & P). In today’s NFL, points scored are king, plus with ALL of the weapons needed, plus coaching, plus his last few games where he seemed to GET IT!,Winston will have no excuses for not performing. Here’s hoping!!! To be sure, I would do something with the defense but reserve any major overhaul until I had the time to evaluate, teach, coach, the young secondary, LB’s etc. Year two would be the clean up with the defense, with minor tweaks to the offense. Year tow should be a 10-6 record and a wild card berth. I would also get rid of ALL soft, non performers, malcontents and the like, as BA said he is going to change the culture. It has been discussed, ad nauseum, who the likely cuts/trades should be. Year three should be our year. Super Bowl or bust.

    +4
    -4
    Rating: 0. From 8 votes.
    Please wait...
    • I’d fix the trenches and see what RoJo and Barber can do behind a revamped line in a more RB-friendly system. Fix OL, add to the DL (especially if GMC is let go), and I’d add another piece or 2 to the LB corps and secondary. But I agree, the 2 year approach is likely going to be necessary to see which players respond to better coaching and which don’t…it’s the best way to avoid giving up on players who were simply victims to Koetter and Mike Smith’s piss poor coaching.

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
  6. I think this article is correct at this point the head coach and most of the coaching jobs have changed for the good I hear the carpet and the desk in the head coaches offices changed along with the pictures on the wall but no players have been released or signed and I’m anxious to see what changes they make to the roster. From what I understand Bruce Arians plans on opening up a can of whoop ass at practice this current roster is used to the opposite I believe there’s going to need to be a lot of changes on the roster we’ll wait and see.

    +8
    -2
    Rating: +6. From 10 votes.
    Please wait...
    • There you go, BOB. A post that I can get behind

      +1
      0
      Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
      Please wait...
  7. First off I believe BA and Bowles when they said we will be multiple on defense and they will put our defensive players in the best position to succeed. I would do everything I can to keep GMC for at least one more season. We just got him some good D linemen to play with and it will be a damn shame if he is traded or let go before we can really see what this D line can do together. Also in Mike Smith defense our D tackles were playing more of a two gap where they locked up the O linemen to allow our backers to makes plays and with Bowles defense he already stated we are going to one gap and penetrate while playing the run on the way to the QB like we use to when we had Sapp and Simeon. With that being said here is what I would do with our pending free agents: I would bring Peyton Barber back, Andrew Adams, and Leonard Wester. I would then franchise tag Donovan Smith, re-sign Kwon Alexander to a one year prove it deal if possible (we just do not know how well he will comeback from the knee injury even tho with todays medicine players comeback from this injury quite often) I love Humphries but in no way is he worth bringing back at 7mil to 8 mil range to be our 3rd or 4th WR. I would re-sign Sanborn, Santos, Minter, and Josh Shaw.

    I would release Vinny Curry and either trade or release Cam Brate because we have O.J. Howard and honestly I do not think Brate is worth the money he is making and we could either draft or sign another TE to take his place for less than he is making. Gholston I would cut as well he is way over paid as a run stuffer only. Desean Jackson would get cut the guy is a cancer and that 10mil would be better used else where Beau Allen I would keep for another year unless they find someone who can do what he does for cheaper.

    I would go after Landon Collins. I think he is a very good Safety and a baller. Pairing him with Justin Evans would give us a very talented set of starting safeties. Coleman would also be a priority signing I think him and Barber would be a very good duo for us. I think Bruce Ellington would be a decent signing to take over Humps role for way cheaper. I would target Ben Powers or Chris Lindstrom in the draft. I really like both players and either one would be a major upgrade for us at RG. I would keep Dotson for one more season while also trying to land a good tackle prospect in the draft. Jason Verrett I think would be a good second tier CB to sign he would bring experience and if healthy more than enough talent to start for us at CB and then I would grab a CB in the draft as well. We really need another starter at CB. I am really hoping the VH3 can stay healthy I think Bowles will get the best out of him if he can stay healthy. I think Bowles will make him look like the player we drafted from Florida when VH3 was aggressive, a play maker and a top CB. The talent is there he was just used incorrectly and been hurt. I would also bring in another kicker to fight Santos for the kicking job competition is always good during the training camp.

    +6
    -3
    Rating: +3. From 9 votes.
    Please wait...
  8. I agree with everything Nitey said up there. Djax is a terrific talent but need his money, love Brate but need his money. Those two position groups are strong enough without them. Makes it an easy decision. The lines are tough. Probably have to keep Smith for the reason Trevor said and not have potentially 3 O line holes to fill. Curry and Gholston have to go… too much money for Curry. I don’t mind bringing back Minter and signing Collins or HB either. I like Whitehead but obviously depth is needed back there.

    +5
    -1
    Rating: +4. From 6 votes.
    Please wait...
    • OJ finished both seasons on IR so far. If Brate is traded and OJ gets hurt, then what? Antony Auclair? Lol. Not gonna happen. Arians ran a two tight end scheme in Indy and crushed it. Plan on watching lots of open tight ends running free and killing it.

      +16
      0
      Rating: +16. From 16 votes.
      Please wait...
      • I understand the importance of depth. I am possibly overrating Auclair but think he can do a good job. As I said, I love Brate but I believe his money is better spent elsewhere for starters or depth, specifically addressing the O line and defense. Basically, if the Bucs need money, I would rather lose Brate than McCoy or D.Smith. Pains me to say that cause like most of you I am not a big D.Smith fan but don’t see many other options. Hopefully the new staff can light a fire under both those guys. I am sure the draft can replace one of them, 13 and 14 million is too much but I would rather have money and depth in the trenches. It is a tough situation and I could be wrong. All just speculation and I am looking forward to seeing how FA shakes out.

        0
        -1
        Rating: -1. From 1 vote.
        Please wait...
        • Respect your opinion. I do disagree. Brate is featured. TE is important to Winston. McCoy seems to be loved by many, but I don’t get it. He isn’t Sapp. He isn’t even Booger. 6 sacks, 28 total tackles(solo/combined), 13 million. Only plays on 64% of snaps. He isn’t worth 25% of what they have to pay him when you look at current production and recent history.

          +1
          0
          Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
          Please wait...
  9. This was a very well organized look at the Bucs free agents and even a few potential targets.

    The Bucs have little cap space but have some pressing priorities. My opinion:
    #1 – Fix the defense
    #2 – Establish a rushing attack that opponents must respect

    If the Bucs plan on making some tough decisions to free up cap space, then they can find the players that can play the scheme the coaches PREFER to implement. Unrein likely to retire or be cut. Getting rid of D.Jax and GMC are a given to me. Too expensive, too little impact. If I hear one more time how opponents have to gameplan for them, Im gonna puke. Newsflash: opponents don’t seem to mind gameplanning for either. Bucs are 5-11 the last two years. McCoy has been the face of the team for 9 years. Team record 52-92 in 144 games over 9 seasons.

    12m+3.75m+10m+13m=38.75m in cap space

    I’ve said all along I believe the Bucs will bring in 2 running backs and 1 safety. This free agency class is strong for both with about a dozen decent vets that will be very affordable vs value. Spending 5m on RB1 and 1.5m on RB2 and 9m on SS leaves the cap at 23.25m. Franchise D.Smith for 16m. See if he can earn a long term deal with the new staff. Cap is at 7.25m. More room can be created. David(9.75m), Curry(8m), Allen(5m)

    In the draft, the Bucs can focus on the strength of the draft playing into their hands. Defensive lineman and linebackers. Reshuffle the front 7 and get the scheme right for ATTACKING.

    +5
    -1
    Rating: +4. From 6 votes.
    Please wait...
  10. Buck ass Bob felt there were too many tackles being made by linebackers and safeties on running plays Buck ass Bob felt tackles were being made by defensive lineman for too much positive yards Buck ass Bob used to love to watch Mean Joe Greene hit a running back in the backfield and driving backwards Buck ass Bob watched too many opponents running backs ring up big yardage in chains move too many times and felt there was something very seriously wrong with the defensive line.

    +3
    -8
    Rating: -5. From 11 votes.
    Please wait...
    • Ummmm, why are you refering to yourself in 3rd person? Diva much?

      +4
      -1
      Rating: +3. From 5 votes.
      Please wait...
      • A very dry sense of humor!

        +2
        -4
        Rating: -2. From 6 votes.
        Please wait...
        • Whew! I was worried you had lost it!

          Nowthen, what do the Bucs do with the cap space they get when they trade Winston for Carr? Kidding!

          +1
          0
          Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
          Please wait...
  11. Buck ass Bob thinks Todd Bowles will think the same thing.

    +1
    -7
    Rating: -6. From 8 votes.
    Please wait...
  12. I would say to anyone worrying about JPP if we switch to a 3-4 to please remember that we’ll be in nickel for about 70% of our defense snaps in which case he’ll be a hand in the dirt DE, I mean really the only time we’d really ever be in a base 3-4 would be when we don’t believe our opponents are passing. He’s got elite level bend and his motor is as good as ever, he’ll be fine.

    +7
    0
    Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
    Please wait...
  13. The Donovan Smith conundrum. Lot’s of early chatter about the Bucs’ drafting AL or FL OT in the 1st. It has been suggested that they could then move Smith to RT. Is this even plausible? In the business of the NFL Would Smith even consider taking RT money?

    +2
    -2
    Rating: 0. From 4 votes.
    Please wait...
    • Not when chatter from San Fran, ATL, and others are hoping to target him as a LT.

      +3
      -1
      Rating: +2. From 4 votes.
      Please wait...
      • That’s when you franchise tag him and trade him off to John Lynch for a day 2 selection this year and maybe a day 2/early day 3 selection next year and package Smith with a round 5 or 6 next year. Who knows?

        0
        0
        No votes yet.
        Please wait...
  14. I have to say I feel better about going into FA and the draft this year, I am hoping that Jason does his best work this offseason with Arians at hand. I have said it all along that Mathieu should be one of the top guys to go after..his versatility and aggressive play would be a huge asset on a defense that has been soft. To me, he’s the only one that would be worth paying a good sized contract. Other than that, I would like us to not overpay for some players but instead find cheaper fill in players and focus building through the draft.

    +8
    0
    Rating: +8. From 8 votes.
    Please wait...
  15. All I know is if we draft another CB in the 1st or 2nd round I’m gonna throw up on someone.

    It’s getting a little ridiculous at this point. I mean who do we take Dean from Auburn in the 2nd?

    I’m pretty sure the CBs we have now Hargreaves, Davis, Stewart taken in the 1st 2 rounds can be better coached and actually play the type of defense they played in college and excelled LOL!!

    No doubt Greedy is one of the best CB prospects I’ve seen in a while and would start IMMEDIATELY, but you will never convince me he would be better for our team than Bosa, Allen, Williams or even White (My Favorite)

    If those 4 go 1-4, we need to hope we can trade back and target Sweat, Ferrell, Greedy, Gary a few picks later and pick up that 2nd so we can move back into the 1st for OL or Josh Jacobs.

    If we can land Mathieu and trade for a starting CB, then the whole draft should be White and DL and OL and RB.
    I think Ben Powers later is a better pick than Jonah in the 1st ANYWHERE, because value isn’t there like the Big 4.

    White not only would cover sideline to sideline with speed and finesse, but his delayed blitzes are stupid fast and disguised.

    Hands down the best LB in this draft.
    Fits perfectly in Todd Bowles defense.
    Will probably be available at #5

    MAKE WHITE THE PICK!!

    +10
    -1
    Rating: +9. From 11 votes.
    Please wait...
  16. Trev, aren’t there some Jet FA LB’s available that weren’t mentioned? Wouldn’t Bowles be interested in them?

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...
    • Attaochu was mentioned. Josh Martin is the other they would consider.

      +2
      0
      Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
      Please wait...
  17. Maybe now’s the time with a top 5 pick to get one of the best LT’s in the draft at a rookie friendly four year salary, still slap the tag on Smith, and attempt to trade him.

    +2
    -3
    Rating: -1. From 5 votes.
    Please wait...
    • Can teams trade a franchised player? I don’t think they can.

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
      • Yes, they can in fact be traded after being tagged.

        0
        0
        No votes yet.
        Please wait...
        • Didn’t realize. Thanks for the knowledge.

          0
          0
          No votes yet.
          Please wait...
          • Trading a “tagged” player comes with no cap penalty, that’s the real allure to me

            0
            0
            No votes yet.
            Please wait...
  18. Ever since the Arian’s hire and the formation of his coaching staff I have held to one belief. Instead of wasting good brain cells on what we think he is going to do, sit back watch and learn. We have limited resources for the first time in a long time. We have players that need to be coached-up, motivated, and introduced to a new “Winning Philosophy.” I sense that BA has a plan and scheme that very well may surprise us all. I think it’s been a long time since we have experience a transformation like this from management and staff and for that reason I choose to relax and observe for a change.

    +8
    -1
    Rating: +7. From 9 votes.
    Please wait...
  19. Sign Hump and Barber to multi-year deals. Slap franchise on Donovan Smith and make him actually earn a contract. Maybe resign a couple of those other guys for depth (Adams, Elliott, Minter…). Dump everyone else. Love Gerald, but I think it’s time to move on. I was never big on Kwon, he could be flashy but was inconsistent. I think we can do better in FA for the money, or maybe we draft Devin White who is already a better player and has a sky high ceiling. I think better option is sign a FA at MLB, then grab best available of Nick Bosa, Josh Allen, Quinnen Williams, or Ed Oliver at 5. Any of these guys would be a wrecker on the line next to Vea, JPP, and Nassib. It is much more difficult to find a playmaker on DL later in the draft than it is to get a serviceable OL. Sign a FA guard, draft at least one OT. Sign a FA starter at CB opposite Davis. I think we are good at safety with Evans and Whitehead, but could make sense to also grab Honey Badger and/or Deone Bucannon for Bowles’ scheme. Definitely grab Tevin Coleman or Mark Ingram. Boom.

    +4
    0
    Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
    Please wait...
  20. Cut Gholston, DJax, Curry, and B Allen. That’s $26.75 mill there.

    Restructure McCoy.

    Re-sign Kwon, Hump, Minter(LB depth,cheap), D Smith(only at G or RT $) A Taylor(LB depth,cheap), Cairo Santos

    Sign Honey Badger, Iupati, K Hunt, Brett Hundley and D Bucannon

    +3
    -2
    Rating: +1. From 5 votes.
    Please wait...
  21. That’s a damning list of FAs. Other than Hump and Barber no one would really be missed, except that we have so little talent ex WR & TE that we’d be short some bodies. Who the heck… oh, never mind…

    Agree with Nitey, like Brate a lot but can’t afford him, sinking that much $ PLUS a #1 pick into the TE position was a tactical blunder.

    Agree with Rusty, has to be a two-year turn. If we underinvest on the lines in the draft – for the sixth year in a row(!) – trying to put some more playmakers on the field shooting for a quick fix in year one it will almost certainly bite us in the arse.

    Top 5 money for Smith? NFW. Maybe not in year one but over next few yrs we will be far better off with a cap-friendly 1st or 2nd round OT than paying >$10 mill a year for more mediocre play. Making decisions to stay in bad situations like this one is how bad teams stay bad.

    +2
    0
    Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
    Please wait...
  22. What I hope is (and I have hope for it because I believe Arians will be heavily involved), we actually fix something this off season that’s broken. Last year, going in to the offseason, we had a broken:

    – RB (so we drafted RoJo – that didn’t work)
    – OL (so we signed Jensen – that didn’t work)
    – secondary (so we re-signed Grimes, drafted MJ Stewart, and then C Davis – the first two didn’t work, and the third one wasn’t much better, but with some potential to get better)
    – pass rush (so we traded for JPP – that was good but not really enough as we also decided to go with Vinny Curry, Gohlston, Noah Spence as the other DE…not a great decision)

    This off season, we again have some broken parts:

    – RB…Barber is acceptable but also upgradable.
    – OL…RG is a hole, RT is a grandpa, C was a debacle, LT is a part-time player
    – CB…we have Davis as a #2, we have nobody on the roster as a #1

    Those are 3 huge holes that need solutions…we have to come out of FA with a viable solution to one, and out of the draft with a viable solution to the other two.

    Over to you Licht – scratch that – over to you Arians 🙂

    +3
    -2
    Rating: +1. From 5 votes.
    Please wait...
    • Hard to determine what worked and what didn’t when the coaching was as deplorable as it was. We’ll see how some of these same moves work with Arians and his staff calling the shots this year. The major fix we need as immediately as possible is to fix the OL. I expect Bowles to get more out of the defense, the secondary especially. And I expect the offense, and running game especially, to look better with Arians’ playbook and play calling…again assuming we fix the OL and can open some running lanes.

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
      • Fair point – an excellent OLine can solve a lot of ills….

        0
        0
        No votes yet.
        Please wait...
      • Except it won’t be Arians calling plays, that job belongs to Leftwich

        0
        0
        No votes yet.
        Please wait...
  23. Underperformers will probably not be on this team, regardless of their draft ranking or their salary.

    +2
    0
    Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
    Please wait...
    • That does seem to be the line Arians is setting….but not sure how he’s going to address 4 underperformers on the OLine all at once? That I think will be his biggest frustration for a little while.

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
  24. Reading through the posts we all have pretty definite ideas about the strengths, weaknesses, keepers, under performers on the roster. But before any of these decisions get made the new staff has to do their assessment based on the schemes they will be running. We’re all coming from what we’ve seen over the past 4 to 5 years running pretty much the same O and D.

    When I look at the roster I see plenty of holes that will take 2 to 3 years to fix. Based on BA’s comments my impression is he sees this as a 1 to 2 year project.

    My point is I have my favorites and they guys I think should be gone. But essentially, I have no idea what we’re going to do.

    +2
    0
    Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
    Please wait...
  25. The only free agents I would go after would be the Honey Badger at a reasonable price to reunite him with BA, and Guard Iupati. Keep Evans, Whitehead, and Adams at Safety, and also develop Stewart to play Safety too. CBs starting would be Hargreaves at slot, Davis and Marshall as press Corners with Elliott and Smith as backups (and Adams if needed too). OLBs should be David and Spence, developed as an outside LB on the strong side, with Beckwith (or Cichy) as Inside LB with Minter as the other ILB (in a 3-4) and Bullough and Taylor as the backups. Our current front four DTs should stay together with a restructured Curry, our new first round DT, Saunders DT from Western Illinois, and Omenihu from Texas as backups. With so many teams wanting D. Smith let them bid against each other to get him in a trade. In the first round trade back several places and take Alabama’s LT or Mississippi’s LT. With a second first pick get top DT available. In the second round take DE Omenihu from Texas. In the third round CB Iman Marshall USC. Second Third Round Pick (trading Jaxson) RB Armsted Temple. Fourth Round DT Saunders Western Illinois, Fifth Round To Seventh Round BPA who can also play special teams unless the FB from the Senior Bowl is still available. Restructure Dotson as backup RT and help train new OLinemen. Keep Wester who can start at RT or develop Cappa to start there. Move Marpet to RG and play Iupati at LG. Jensen at Center. Our First Round LT at LT. Try to develop Benenoch as a backup G or if can’t cut it release him. Keep Evan Smith as backup Center and definitely keep Liedtke who can also backup all Guard and Tackle positions. Get rid of Rogers and keep Barber, Jones, and Armsted and keep Wilson to return kicks. Keep a FB/TE. On the Practise Squad keep a RB with similar build to Barber who could be moved up if Barber is hurt. Keep all WRs on our 2018 roster except for Jackson and keep our 2018 TEs at the end of our season and add a FB/TE who can be used in the backfield in running plays with Jones and in short yardage. We need to get a new Punter and a veteran Field Goal Kicker accurate all the way to 55 yards or keep our present Field Goal Kicker for 40 in and a young kicker with a big leg for kickoffs and long Fieldgoals. I would resign Fritz to just play in the red zone if Jameis never gets high percentage scores in the red zone and otherwise not play unless Jameis is injured.

    +1
    -1
    Rating: 0. From 2 votes.
    Please wait...
  26. Cuts: DJax, Gholston, Curry, Unrein, B. Allen.

    FA targets: Tevin Coleman, Tyrann Mathieu.

    Big decisions / cap moves:

    D. Smith – franchise tag. Hasn’t earned long term deal, and new coaches may be just what he needs. Expensive, but least risky of the options + bonus of continuity for Marpet.

    Kwon – 1 year prove it deal w/incentives. Wants to play for Tampa, heart of a warrior. Freak Athlete. No more Mike Smith + aggressive style of defense will pay dividends for his growth.

    McCoy – wants to be here. Doesn’t quit. But, very expensive. Push hard for cap-friendly restructure or see if he has trade value.

    Hump – push hard for fair deal (he’s not a number 2 receiver). If he wants too much money, let him go. He’ll be missed.

    Brate – earned his deal, let him get healthy, too much chemistry w/ Jameis, OJ hasn’t finished a season yet.

    Draft:

    If you end up trading McCoy: Ed Oliver. Perfect pairing with Vita Vea.

    If you get a King’s ransom for a QB needy team: take it and see who falls to you. Need help in trenches and secondary above all else.

    If you keep McCoy and no trade scenario, snag Q. Williams or the top DE on the board.

    +6
    -1
    Rating: +5. From 7 votes.
    Please wait...
    • I like a lot of what you’ve surmised…except that it leaves us with the worst CBs in the league – by far – with somebody like Ryan Smith covering Julio Jones….ouch!

      0
      0
      No votes yet.
      Please wait...
  27. *cut desean Jackson, +10$M
    *Cut Vinny curry, +$7M
    *Cut Beau allen, +5$M. Unrein too

    Keep Gerald McCoy.

    Resign humphries at 6$M/year

    Sign SS Landon Collins 9$/year

    Resign Kwon at 8$M/year

    Sign iupati OG at 7.5M/year

    Sign Jordan Matthews WR 2.5$M/year

    Move Dotson to LT, let smith walk. Draft a prospect OT. Move benenoch to RT, Compete with Wester. Draft another guard. Draft a project QB. Draft cornerbacks, actually coach them

    Draft LB white from LSU

    JPP, vea, and Gerald on dline.
    White,beckwith, David, and kwon @ LB. Noah Spence moves to rush LB

    +1
    -5
    Rating: -4. From 6 votes.
    Please wait...
  28. You want to move an aging RT who has lost a step to LT and move an awful football player who can’t play guard to tackle? All this while letting a solid, young LT, who hasn’t had the best of coaching, walk? Yeah that sounds like a terrible idea.

    I think adding players at positions of need whom BA is familiar with makes a ton of sense. (Honey Badger and Iupati).

    I’d add another name to the FA target list, Preston Smith. He can play 4-3 DE with his hand in the dirt or stand up LBer a 3-4. Quick, plays nasty, still young and shouldn’t break the bank. Nassib, JPP and Smith would be a nice start at DE for Bowles.

    The tough one for the Bucs is what to do at LBer? I’ve been a fan of Kwon since he was drafted, but coming off an ACL and demanding (if true) that kind of money is crazy. With the health of Bechwith in question, then maybe it’s just time to move on from both LSU backers and draft another stud LSU backer?

    +1
    0
    Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
    Please wait...
  29. I would love to keep Gerald McCoy around. Still a very productive player, and his leadership in the locker room and on the field cannot be overstated. $13 million is steep, however. But if push comes to shove, I keep him. The Bucs need to do whatever they can to retain Adam Humphries. His production speaks for itself. There is no way that the Bucs can let Donovan Smith walk away as a free agent with no compensation whatsoever. Quality, dependable left tackles like him do not grow on trees. Yes, he leaves you wanting more at times. I think he will receive better coaching with the new coaching staff, and hopefully that pushes him to become a better, more consistent player. But what happens if you let him walk, and don’t succeed in signing one of the other tackles on the free agent market, and you don’t secure one in the draft? Then what? You’ve got a big hole over there at left tackle. Try to work out a new contract with him, and if agreement isn’t reached prior to the deadline, place the franchise tag on him. Just can’t let a starting left tackle in his mid 20s walk away and get nothing in return. I agree that the Bucs cannot overpay for Kwon Alexander. He’s a good but not great player. Not in the class of the middle linebackers listed in the column. If another team is willing to pay him what he currently is asking for, let him go. As far as targeting other free agents on the open market, I will say it: Go get the Honey Badger. Sign him, and you instantly have a playmaker and a leader in the secondary. The Bucs badly need a player like that. His relationship with Arians should give the Bucs a big edge should they pursue him. The thought of LeVeon Bell suiting up in a Bucs uniform certainly is intriguing. Best player available in free agency at arguably the Bucs’ biggest position of need. If the Bucs really do want to make a big splash in free agency, this is where to do it. I wouldn’t rule it out. But I think that asking price is just too much.

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...
  30. Hey Trevor, just a little update. There isnt an NFL team in San Diego anymore.

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...
  31. Keep: Barber, Brate, Humphries, Allen, and Leon if possible.
    Trade OR DUMP :Curry, GMC, D Jax, Golsten.
    Tag Smith and draft his replacement (Jonah Williams is my favorite).
    Bring in : Earl Thomas (his leadership in our young secondary will be worth it) plus some extras as needed.
    Draft: O line and D line heavy with a splash of LB and RB.

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...
  32. Here’s one iteration:

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1OyzH5XKRnTT-P47sKvsWM5RH4Epg9PFAumP0vTz6iAU/edit?usp=sharing

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...
  33. Licht used a trade to get the Bucs their biggest boost in 2018.

    Sure seems like he would at least double down on that, with the two trade baits being Desean Jackson and Gerald McCoy.

    0
    0
    No votes yet.
    Please wait...