Thursday is the deadline for the Bucs and wide receiver Chris Godwin, who received the franchise tag this offseason, to reach an agreement on a contract extension. The reality of that happening are slim, but there is still a chance, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.

The Bucs placed the franchise tag on Godwin on March 9 and he signed his one-year deal with the team on March 18. The franchise tag contract is worth $15.983 million. It is unclear how much money Godwin is seeking to make on an average, per-year basis, but it is likely between $16-$18 million per season. Fellow Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans currently averages $16.5 million per season.

A team official told Pewter Report that there is still a chance something could get done by Thursday, but the situation was described as “not optimistic.”

Bucs WR Chris Godwin

Bucs WR Chris Godwin – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Godwin is coming off a season in which he caught 65 passes for 840 yards (12.5 avg.) and scored seven touchdowns in helping Tampa Bay win Super Bowl LV. He battled a hamstring injury, a concussion and a broken finger last year and Godwin’s statistics didn’t quite measure up to the breakout season he enjoyed in 2019. Godwin made his first and only Pro Bowl that year in leading the Bucs with 86 catches for 1,333 yards (15.5 avg.) and nine touchdowns – all career-best numbers.

The Bucs placed the one-year, franchise tag on outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett in 2020 after he had a breakout Pro Bowl season in 2019. Barrett, who signed a one-year, $4 million prove-it deal with Tampa Bay, led the league with 19.5 sacks in 2019 en route to his first Pro Bowl. That broke Warren Sapp’s single-season sack record of 16.5 sacks.

Barrett followed up the next year with just eight sacks in the regular season, but had four more in the postseason. He notched three at Green Bay in the NFC Championship Game and one in Super Bowl LV prior to getting a four-year, $68 million contract extension this offseason that averages $17 million per year.

Godwin may have to take a similar route and play this year on the franchise tag, especially since he has just one 1,000-yard season under his belt. What helps Godwin’s cause is that he plays slot receiver, which is the featured position in Bruce Arians’ pass-first offense – and plays it exceptionally well.

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About the Author: Scott Reynolds

Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at:
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3 months ago

I was wondering why there has been no chatter on this subject. Bucs need to extend Godwin, should be #1 priority. With the cap going up he will cost closer to 20 million next year. Evans and Godwin under contract the Bucs will have the best WR core for the foreseeable future.

3 months ago

Let’s see how the year shapes up. Would be hard to see Godwin in another uniform.

3 months ago

Godwin needs to be a Buc for life. Licht knows his value, and I know we can count on Jason to do what’s right for the team.

3 months ago

How does Godwin make more than Mike’s 16.5 mil? Until he can put back to back seasons without injuries then it will be troublesome in terms of team chemistry if he makes more than Evans. Is potential really worth more than actual stats?

Reply to  bucballer
3 months ago

He doesn’t make more than Evans

Reply to  Dave
3 months ago

if he signed a long term contract he would. U know what I meant!

Reply to  bucballer
3 months ago

Mike is ok with taking restructuring on his contract to keep the level of his team high. He played on so many horrible teams and is paving his way to the Hall of Fame. Godwin might be interested in the money bag instead. All depends on if he wants to be a WR1 on a team like the Ravens or Raiders and maybe make 1 or 2 rounds of the playoffs, versus riding this train with the GOAT and go for 1 or 2 more Super Bowls.

Reply to  eaustinyoung
3 months ago

Restructuring as long as he gets his most deserving cash. Sure he’d take it as a roster bonus or similar cap space strategy, but he won’t take less than his current contract allows for. And he shouldn’t have to.