Going into the 2016 season, Bradley McDougald and Chris Conte were the Bucs’ two starting safeties. When the season was over, both were scheduled to become free agents, and with the emergence of Keith Tandy as the starting free safety, the future of both McDougald and Conte in Tampa Bay became unclear.

When Conte signed his new two-year, $5 million dollar deal in the early hours of free agency, and with the Bucs following that by signing Cowboys safety J.J. Wilcox, McDougald became the odd man out and will not be returning in 2017.

McDougald, who went undrafted in 2013, has been with the Buccaneers for the last four years. In 2014, when the Bucs traded their former first round pick Mark Barron to the Rams, that opened the door for McDougald to get major playing time. Since then, he’s gone from a back up safety to starting safety, and ended the 2016 season as the team’s primary strong safety opposite Keith Tandy.

McDougald signed a 1-year, $2 million dollar deal for the Seahawks. 

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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: [email protected]
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macabee
macabee
5 years ago

I guess I’m a little flabbergasted by this signing – meaning I don’t understand why this happened. My understanding of the turn of events is that the Bucs did not fail here. They attempted to resign McDougald before the start of free agency according to the Tampa Bay Times. Here is the contract McDougald played under last year. Bradley McDougald signed a 1 year, $2,553,000 contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including an average annual salary of $2,553,000 per Spotrac. I assume the Bucs at least offered to renew that contract or would have presumably offered more this year based… Read more »

David DeLeon
David DeLeon
5 years ago

Like you said at the end, I think he thought he was worth more. Before he knew it there was no music and all the seats were taken.

Horse
Horse
Reply to  Trevor Sikkema
5 years ago

Trevor, I’m the guy with the negative vote here. It doesn’t make since for me. We could have signed McDougald for 2.75 a year for two years and guaranteed it for the first year. Something else is there beside what you are “ding,ding,ding” about. We may never know because the Bucs might know something else about McDougald.

thewbacca
thewbacca
Reply to  Horse
5 years ago

The difference between the two contracts is $197,000. This isn’t rounding up or asking for a tic-tac here. This is a 7.7% increase. Wouldn’t be the first time deals weren’t struck on this margin, nor the last.

chetthevette
chetthevette
5 years ago

Good luck to him.
GO BUCS

drdneast
drdneast
5 years ago

Aptly put David DeLeon. McDougald proved ehat a miserable pick and NFL safety Barron was.

surferdudes
5 years ago

This draft is deep at safety also, another reason not to over pay an average one. What surprised me is they valued Conte more. Conte might be slightly better, but I think that gets offset by his injury history. We read a lot about Chris loosing his job at years end, but I think his chest injury played more into that then what the Bucs believe his ability actually is. At any rate, think the Bucs believe they can draft one this year who has more up side then what Bradley has shown, who will be under a longer, cheaper… Read more »

Horse
Horse
5 years ago

I just don’t get this. Why would the Bucs pay 5 million for Conte and not be willing to pay McDougald for say 2.75 million unless his agent didn’t even give the Bucs a call back to make a better and final offer? Both are about the same as to talent. Just my opinion.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Horse
5 years ago

We’ll never be told why – teams never do that, and players and their agents never do that unless they’re being dumb. It’s a private business matter.

The Bucs made their offers based on their perception of player value and where they want to be as a team.

Get over it, Horse. Much bigger things to be focused on this year.

Horse
Horse
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 years ago

Conte got a big raise though? I’ll move on, nothing i can do about it anyway.

Buc 1976
Buc 1976
5 years ago

Personally I thought he was hot and cold!
Good luck to him.

SCLOBERNOCKER
SCLOBERNOCKER
5 years ago

I like McDoog, and Im sure the Bucs brass did too, but in the end, they liked Wilcox better. Im sure Mc Doog thought he would get more on the market than his demand ended up being.

drdneast
drdneast
5 years ago

Horse, it’s because. Jason Licht was on the grassy knoll. He was also hanging out with Ted. Cruz’s dad in New Orleans.
Licht is also known to wiretap certain New York city addresses.
Crafty guy that Licht

scubog
scubog
Reply to  drdneast
5 years ago

He even arranged a date for his friend Monica with a certain president.

deeznuts
deeznuts
5 years ago

He can take his 4.74 40yard dash with him to Seattle. (Even I’m faster than this..)

Luckily, I think drew Brees Matt Ryan and cam newtons 2018 QBR will lose a few points after this transaction.

Almost always taking bad pursuit angles leading to bad tackling technique..slow and can’t cover TE’s. this guy was Sean jones 2.0.

draft a safety and get it over with. Or call tanard Jackson smh

fredster
fredster
5 years ago

No big loss. Average at best safety wanting better than average pay. Nothing complicated about this. Tandy and Conte are better. We need to draft for back up and future still for sure. Go Bucs!

scubog
scubog
5 years ago

I think it’s pretty clear that the organization thinks less of McDougald than perhaps we knew. Never anything special. Did OK for an undrafted free agent.

drdneast
drdneast
5 years ago

LOL, Scubog. I don’t think that President ever needed any help picking up chicks. He was a chick magnet like JFK except Bill seemed to be drawn to the skankier ones, although Monika wasn’t the trailer trash type.
I think you hit the nail square on the head deezenuts.
As I said before, the fact McDougald beat out Barron for the starting safety job where he actually did play better than our former 1st round pick just proved how bad that selection was.

Freeman Strickland
Freeman Strickland
5 years ago

Adding Wilcox and bringing back McDougald on the same terms as Conte would have been the safe way to go given the cap space the Bucs have, the injuries the Bucs have faced with Conte and the uncertainties of the draft. Maybe a safety will look like the best player available when the Bucs have a pick in the first few rounds. Maybe the pick is not a bust for the Bucs like a first round pick who ended up going to another team before he found the niche he has succeeded in. And, maybe injuries do not force the… Read more »

plopes808
plopes808
5 years ago

Not sure y we let him go with our cap space. Our safeties played well down the stretch last year and signing Conte seemed like a lower priority than McDougald. Maybe the team sees more in JJ Wilcox. I hope they’re right, they’ve been right more than they’ve been wrong as of late so I have faith that this team will get better