The Current State Of The Buccaneers

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had the best offseason in the NFL last year, re-signing outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, in addition to using the franchise tag on outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett. Oh, and general manager Jason Licht and head coach Bruce Arians were also able to lure the greatest quarterback of all time, Tom Brady, to Tampa Bay and also trade for future Hall of Fame tight end Rob Gronkowski.

Bucs head coach Bruce Arians and GM Jason Licht

Bucs head coach Bruce Arians and GM Jason Licht – Photo by: USA Today

Those moves, plus the selection of star right tackle Tristan Wirfs and free safety Antoine Winfield, Jr. in the first two rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft culminated in the Bucs making NFL history by hosting and winning the Super Bowl at Raymond James Stadium against Kansas City, 31-9. Despite the team’s supreme success, the Bucs’ coaching staff didn’t get pilfered outside of offensive assistant Antwaan Randle El, who left for Detroit to be the Lions wide receivers coach. That’s a huge plus as Tampa Bay looks to defend its championship in 2021.

But repeating as Super Bowl champs won’t be easy if the team can’t be kept intact. That will be a challenge this offseason, as Licht and director of football administration Mike Greenberg have a lot of free agents to re-sign this offseason first. Among them are Barrett, Suh, Gronkowski, inside linebacker Lavonte David, running back Leonard Fournette and kicker Ryan Succop among others.

The NFC South appears to be there for the taking for Tampa Bay if most or all of the team’s stars can return in 2021. New Orleans is expected to see star quarterback Drew Brees retire and the Saints are in terrible salary cap shape and will have to make some unwanted roster cuts. Atlanta underwent a regime change and isn’t expected to make the playoffs again this year, and Carolina looks to be a year or two away from Matt Rhule took over as head coach last year, and is in search of a new quarterback to replace Teddy Bridgewater.

Explaining The Bucs Battle Plans For The 2021 Offseason writers Scott Reynolds, Mark Cook, Jon Ledyard, Matt Matera and Taylor Jenkins  have devised their own Bucs Battle Plans For The 2021 Offseason that feature free agent signings, trades, roster moves and draft picks designed to help Tampa Bay repeat as Super Bowl champions. Here’s my Bucs Battle Plan – let me know what you think of it in the comments section below.

Remember, these Bucs Battle Plans are how the staff members would reshape the team this offseason – not necessarily what we think Tampa Bay will do in free agency and the draft, although there could be some overlap with certain players the team may be targeting.

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

The big challenge regarding this year’s Bucs Battle Plan is that the 2021 salary cap hasn’t been set yet, although it’s expected to be between $180-$185 million, which is a decrease of about $13-$18 million from the $198 million in 2020 due to the lost stadium revenue from COVID-19. Tampa Bay has between $11 million and $19 million in available salary cap room between and

Licht and Greenberg can create a good deal of salary cap space by doing restructures to the contracts of wide receiver Mike Evans and left guard Ali Marpet, and the team can also extend the contracts of Brady, left tackle Donovan Smith and center Ryan Jensen. We’re going to assume for all of this year’s Bucs Battle Plans that Greenberg and Licht will make some or all of these moves to clear a substantial amount of room, so we won’t be using financials in this year’s free agency period due to the uncertainty.

Reynolds’ Bucs Battle Plan For The 2021 Offseason

The approach I try to take in my Bucs Battle Plans each year is to be reasonable and realistic, trying to project what Licht would or could do instead of playing fantasy football. Like the Bucs, I want to try to bring back this Super Bowl squad because I believe Tampa Bay has the chance to repeat as champions. So I’m going to re-sign almost all of the team’s free agents, add a few new pieces in free agency and target the trenches in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Bucs Trade Out Of The First Round

Licht gets an offer he can’t refuse to trade out of the first round and pick up some additional middle-round picks when the New York Jets come calling. The Jets, who have the 34th overall pick, which is the second pick in the second round, want to jump ahead of Jacksonville, which picks at No. 33, to draft Notre Dame offensive tackle Liam Eichenberg. So New York trades No. 34 and its two third-round picks (No. 66 and No. 86) to Tampa Bay for the No. 32 overall pick, the Bucs’ fourth-round pick (No. 138) and both of their seventh-rounders (No. 250 and No. 257).

Tampa Bay’s 2021 Draft Picks
Round 2 – No. 34 (from Jets)
Round 2 – No. 64
Round 3 – No. 66 (from Jets)
Round 3 – No. 86 (from Jets)
Round 3 – No. 138
Round 5 – No. 180

Tampa Bay doesn’t have a sixth-round pick this year due to a trade in a previous year, but is expected to get a compensatory draft pick in the fifth or sixth round this year. However that compensatory pick was not factored into the mock draft in this year’s Bucs Battle Plans because it’s not yet official.

Bucs’ Pay Cuts

If Cameron Brate wants to come back as the team’s third-string tight end, he’ll have to take a pay cut once again to help the team. Brate took a $2 million pay cut last year to earn $4.25 million. He’ll have to sacrifice some more this year as he’s set to make $6.5 million. A $3 million pay cut this year will help the Bucs bring back some of their more important free agent starters.

Use The Franchise Tag On Godwin

Bucs WR Chris Godwin

Bucs WR Chris Godwin – Photo by: USA Today

After using the franchise tag on Barrett last year, the Bucs will use the franchise tag on Godwin this year, as the value of the tag, which is around $16 million, is actually about $3-$4 million less than the star receiver’s free agent market value. That helps save the Bucs cap room in 2021 and gives Godwin a nice, well-deserved raise. Tampa Bay and Godwin’s agent can work on a long-term deal prior to free agency in 2022.

Unrestricted Free Agents Re-signed

OLB Shaquil Barrett – 4-year deal, $72 million
Getting Barrett back is huge, and after two very good years the 28-year old has shown that he’s worth $18 million per year. Barrett’s contract features $36 million in guaranteed money and because of it, he’ll only hit the cap for $14 million in 2021, which helps the Bucs sign other players.

ILB Lavonte David – 3-year deal, $48 million
The 31-year old David re-signs for three years, averaging $16 million, with the first two years guaranteed. The Tampa Bay legend can now retire as a Buccaneer.

K Ryan Succop – 3-year deal, $12 million
Succop is 34, but stayed healthy in 2020 and deserves a raise to $4 million per season and an extension with the first two years guaranteed.

TE Rob Gronkowski – 2-year deal, $16 million
With the Bucs expected to add another year on to Tom Brady’s contract, Gronkowski re-ups for two years with Tampa Bay so they can retire together. Gronk’s new deal is worth $8 million per year, but he’ll only count $6 million against the cap in 2021 because the contract is fully guaranteed.

Bucs OLBs Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul and DT Ndamukong Suh

Bucs OLBs Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul and DT Ndamukong Suh – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

DT Ndamukong Suh – 1-year deal, $8 million
Suh is back for another year and re-signs for the same amount that he played for in 2020.

QB Blaine Gabbert – 1-year deal, $2 million
The Bucs really like Gabbert, and I like the fact that he knows the system and looked good in the second half of the win over the Lions enough to bring him back for one more year with a slight raise.

QB Ryan Griffin – 1-year deal, $1.5 million
Because Brady will be out of action during the spring due to his offseason knee injury, bringing back another QB like Griffin that knows the offense makes sense for continuity in OTAs and mini-camp.

CB Ross Cockrell – 1-year deal, $1.1 million
Cockrell proved his worth over the second half of the season, seeing reps in the slot and providing quality depth.

DT Rakeem Nunez-Roches – 1-year deal, $1.5 million
Not sure Nunez-Roches makes the team in 2021, but I re-sign him to the same contract from a year ago and bring him back to compete in training camp.

TE Antony Auclair – 1-year deal, $1.1 million
The Bucs had success using offensive tackle Joe Haeg as a blocking tight end last year and will continue that practice with another tackle in 2021. Yet, I’ll still bring back Auclair to battle Tanner Hudson in training camp for the No. 4 tight end spot.

FS Andrew Adams – 1-year deal, $1.1 million
Adams has been a “steady Eddie” over the last three seasons in Tampa Bay. He deserves the chance to return to compete for a roster spot in 2021.

RB T.J. Logan – 1-year deal, $1.1 million
Logan may not make the team in 2021 following his knee injury, but I’ll bring him to camp to compete for the return duties and for the No. 4 running back role.

ILB Kevin Minter – 1-year deal, $990,000
The 31-year old Minter is a crafty veteran and was the special teams captain. He comes back on a on a league-minimum deal.

Unrestricted Free Agents Not Re-signed

Bucs RB Leonard Fournette

Bucs RB Leonard Fournette – Photo by: USA Today

RB Leonard Fournette
I wouldn’t mind having Fournette back but I can’t afford him. Playoff Lenny wants to be a full-time starter and a big raise and he’ll find that elsewhere.

WR Antonio Brown
I don’t trust Brown, who turns 33 in July, given his past behavior. Not taking a chance by re-signing him.

RB LeSean McCoy
McCoy is done in the NFL, and retires with two Super Bowl rings in back-to-back years.

CB Ryan Smith
Smith has been a special teams ace for five years in Tampa Bay, but he’s too expensive to keep.

DT Steve McLendon
The 35-year old McLendon retires with a Super Bowl ring after providing valuable reps last year inside.

OT Josh Wells
Wells has been a solid backup, but I have other plans at offensive tackle in 2021. I might sign him off the street in 2021 if there is a long-term injury at offensive tackle.

OT Joe Haeg
Haeg was a better extra tight end than he was as a backup lineman and won’t return to Tampa Bay.

OL Earl Watford
Watford helped the Bucs at the end of the season and got a ring, but I’m moving on from him in 2021.

RB Kenjon Barner
Barner is just a guy and I have other plans at running back and kick return.

LB Deone Bucannon
Bucannon was an emergency signing down the stretch and won’t be back in 2021.

LB Jack Cichy
Cichy just can’t stay healthy and it’s time to find another, healthier backup linebacker.

New Unrestricted Free Agents Signed

Patriots RB James White and QB Tom Brady

Patriots RB James White and QB Tom Brady – Photo by: USA Today

RB James White – 2-year deal, $7 million
I’m adding the 29-year old White on a two-year deal that averages $3.5 million per year to replace Fournette and McCoy on third downs as a reliable pass catcher out of the backfiel. White is reunited with Brady and the length of their contracts is synced up.

WR Breshad Perriman – 1-year deal, $3 million
Perriman signed a one-year contract with the Jets last year for $6 million, but didn’t have the production to match his contract. He re-signs with the Bucs for half of that in his quest for a Super Bowl ring and for the chance to play with Tom Brady. Perriman, who has a nice mix of size and speed, was a stud in Tampa Bay over the last half of the 2019 season and already knows the offense.

OT Demar Dotson – 1-year deal, $2.5 million
Yes, I’m bringing back one of my favorite Buccaneers to help him get a ring before he retires. The 36-year old Dotson is coming off a solid year with the Broncos and is capable of playing right tackle and even left tackle in a pinch, as he’s a better pass protector than he is a run blocker.

Restricted Free Agents Re-signed

G Aaron Stinnie – 1-year deal, $2.133 million
Stinnie proved his worth down the stretch starting at right tackle for the injured Alex Cappa in the playoffs and the Super Bowl. He returns to compete for the starting job in 2021.

Exclusive Rights Free Agents Re-signed

TE Tanner Hudson – 1-year deal, $850,000
Hudson made strides as a blocker last year, but needs to keep improving in that area. I like his receiving skills and potential enough to have him come back and compete for a roster spot with Auclair.

DL Patrick O’Connor – 1-year deal, $850,000
O’Connor continues to make strides on defense and is a special teams stalwart. He’s definitely coming back in 2021.

DL Jeremiah Ledbetter – 1-year deal, $850,000
Ledbetter has good versatility and has done enough to hang around Tampa Bay. He may not make the team, but I’ll bring him in to compete in camp.

LS Zach Triner – 1-year deal, $850,000
Triner is as solid as they come as a long snapper and he needs to return to Tampa Bay.

Reynolds’ 2021 Bucs Draft Picks

Round 2 (from Jets) – North Carolina RB Javonte Williams
Junior • 5-10, 220

Tampa Bay drafts Williams to team with – and eventually replace – Ronald Jones II in the Bucs’ backfield. Williams rushed for 2,297 yards and 29 touchdowns, while averaging 6.3 yards per carry, including 1,140 yards and 19 TDs during his junior campaign. Williams is a great pass protector and a good receiver out of the backfield, catching 50 passes for 539 yards (10.8 avg.) and three scores in three years for the Tar Heels. Williams has incredible power and contact balance, which allows him to break tackles, and the agility to slip tackles at the NFL level.

Round 2 – Alabama C Landon Dickerson
Senior • 6-6, 325

The Bucs didn’t plan on drafting Dickerson, but he falls to Tampa Bay at the end of the second round. Dickerson is coming off a torn ACL in the SEC Championship Game in December, which affects his draft stock, in addition to a torn ACL and ankle injuries from his days at Florida State. But he did start 24 straight games at Alabama prior to his latest knee injury, which is a good sign. Dickerson has tremendous size and strength, a great football I.Q. and a super personality and leadership qualities.

Round 3 (from Jets) – North Carolina State DT Alim McNeill
Senior • 6-2, 320

McNeill is a run-stuffing force at 320 pounds and has a great bull rush as he enters the league. He played three technique as a sophomore and nose tackle as a junior, which cut into his pass rush production. McNeill had 17.5 tackles for loss and 10 sacks in three years at N.C. State, including 5.5 sacks in 2019. McNeill had five pass breakups, two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and a pick-six in his Wolfpack career. His pick-six showed off his great athleticism, as McNeill played running back in high school – just like Tampa Bay nose tackle Vita Vea.

Round 3 (from Jets) – North Carolina ILB Chazz Surratt
Senior • 6-1, 227

Surratt began his Tar Heels career as the starting quarterback as a freshman, but lost his job during his sophomore season. Surratt then moved to defense in 2019 where he recorded 115 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks, two pass breakups, one interception, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in 13 games. His production was similar in 11 games last year, recording 91 stops, 7.5 tackles for loss, six sacks, three pass breakups, one interception, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. Surratt is a very good athlete and has great closing speed and a solid football I.Q. He’s still learning how to play linebacker, but his downhill style is a great fit for Todd Bowles’ scheme.

Round 3 – Northern Iowa DE Elerson Smith
Senior • 6-6, 262

Tampa Bay stays on defense for the third straight pick, drafting Smith to eventually replace Jason Pierre-Paul. Northern Iowa’s 2020 season was cancelled due to COVID-19, but he showed well in the Senior Bowl with two tackles and a tackle for loss in the game. Smith recorded 63 tackles, 21.5 tackles for loss, 14 sacks, five forced fumbles, four pass breakups and two blocked kicks as a junior in 2019. The year prior Smith logged 19 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks and a forced fumble. Smith wins with great length and hustle and has a big upside as an edge rusher.

Round 5 – East Carolina OT D’Ante Smith
Senior • 6-5, 291

Smith was injured in the 2020 season opener and missed the rest of the year. He practiced one day at the Senior Bowl before injuring his thumb and was dominant. Smith played left tackle at 274 pounds at East Carolina, but has added 15 pounds of needed size over the past year. He still needs to add an additional 10-15 pounds at the NFL level and is not ready to play as a rookie, but Smith is a great technician and has all the tools to eventually start as early as 2022. Smith could serve as the Bucs’ blocking tight end as Joe Haeg did in 2020 to get some needed experience as a rookie.

Reynolds’ “Way Too Early” Bucs 53-Man Roster Projection


QB Tom Brady

QB Blaine Gabbert

QB Ryan Griffin

Analysis: With Brady out for the offseason while he rehabs his surgically-repaired knee, Gabbert and Griffin know the playbook and the offense doesn’t miss a beat in the spring as a result. The Bucs like Gabbert and he could be in the mix to eventually succeed Brady in a few years.


RB Ronald Jones II
RB Javonte Williams
RB James White
RB Ke’Shawn Vaughn

Analysis: Jones is the starter and is in a contract year. He’ll be pushed for playing time by Williams, who is the Bucs’ top pick this year. White takes over as the team’s third down pick due to his reliable hands as a receiver out of the backfield. The Bucs don’t know if Vaughn can be a part-time contributor or a spot role player, but will find out in 2021.

Bucs WR Breshad Perriman

Bucs WR Breshad Perriman – Photo by: Getty Images


WR Mike Evans 

WR Chris Godwin
WR Breshad Perriman
WR Scotty Miller
WR Tyler Johnson
WR Jaydon Mickens

Analysis: Evans and Godwin comprise the best 1-2 punch at receiver in the league. Perriman returns on a one-year deal to replace Antonio Bryant in an attempt to win a Super Bowl ring. He’ll compete with Miller and Johnson for playing time as the third receiver. Mickens is back to return punts and kicks and to see some occasional snaps on offense.


TE Rob Gronkowski
TE O.J. Howard
TE Cameron Brate
TE Tanner Hudson

Analysis: The Bucs re-sign Gronkowski to start along with Howard, who is back from an Achilles injury and is in a contract year. Brate is back after taking a pay cut to provide solid depth, while Hudson continues to develop as a pass-catching tight end and special teams player.


LT Donovan Smith
LG Ali Marpet
C Ryan Jensen
RG Alex Cappa
RT Tristan Wirfs
C-G Landon Dickerson
G Aaron Stinnie
OT D’Ante Smith
OT Demar Dotson

Analysis: Tampa Bay’s starting offensive line returns intact for a second straight season. Dickerson is a future starter at either center or guard and offers depth once he returns from ACL injury. Stinnie is a starting-caliber guard and could compete with Cappa for the right guard spot. D’Ante Smith and Dotson have the ability to play left tackle and right tackle in a pinch, respectively.

Bucs NT Vita Vea

Bucs NT Vita Vea – Photo by: USA Today


DT Ndamukong Suh
NT Vita Vea
DE William Gholston
DT Alim McNeill
DT Khalil Davis
DE Patrick O’Connor

Analysis: Suh is back to team with Vea and Gholston for another run at a Super Bowl. McNeill has the ability to play nose tackle or the three tech spot and has the size to play right away, while Davis is still developing as a defensive tackle. O’Connor is a special teams star and is capable of playing defensive end to spell Gholston.


OLB Shaquil Barrett
OLB Jason Pierre-Paul
OLB Anthony Nelson
OLB Elerson Smith
OLB Cam Gill

Analysis: Barrett is back to pair with Pierre-Paul to terrorize quarterbacks for another year. Nelson continues to develop and is pushed for playing time by Smith, who has better athleticism and pass rushing ability. Gill will compete for the No. 4 OLB role and will continue to star on special teams.


ILB Devin White
ILB Lavonte David
ILB Kevin Minter
ILB Chazz Surratt

Analysis: White and David, who is re-signed this offseason, are the best 1-2 linebacker tandem in the league. Minter is back on a one-year deal to provide veteran depth and special teams help. Surratt will be an impact player on special teams while he learns Tampa Bay’s defense and continues to develop as a linebacker.

Bucs CB Carlton Davis III

Bucs CB Carlton Davis III – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR


CB Carlton Davis III
CB Jamel Dean
CB Sean Murphy-Bunting
CB Ross Cockrell

CB Herb Miller

Analysis: Tampa Bay’s cornerback quartet returns with Davis entering a contract year and Dean and Murphy-Bunting looking for more consistency in 2021. Cockrell showed his value in the slot and is back for another year. Miller earns a role on special teams and is a developing defender.

FS Antoine Winfield, Jr.
SS Jordan Whitehead
FS Mike Edwards
SS Javon Hagan

Analysis: Winfield is an emerging star. Whitehead, who is entering a contract year, and Edwards will compete for a starting spot. Hagan makes strides in training camp to replace Andrew Adams on the roster as the final safety.

K Ryan Succop
P Bradley Pinion
LS Zach Triner
Analysis: Tampa Bay’s special teams battery returns for another season with Succop’s re-signing in free agency. Pinion is a very good punter and a great kickoff specialist. Triner is as solid as they come in terms of snapping.

What Did You Think?

Did you like my Bucs Battle Plan for the 2021 offseason? Does it adequately address Tampa Bay’s needs? Which additions did you like best? Let me know what you think in the article comments section below.

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Scott Reynolds’ Bucs Battle Plan For The 2021 Offseason

Mark Cook’s Bucs Battle Plan For The 2021 Offseason

Jon Ledyard’s Bucs Battle Plan For The 2o21 Offseason

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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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10 months ago

Nice work Scott. I like what you did with the contracts for bringing back the Bucs FA’s. I also like the White signing but don’t care for the 1st pick RB because of that. Anyway, I’m starting to beat a dead horse.

10 months ago

If all of that happens, I’ll be pretty stoked! But I fear that Shack won’t be returning… but we shall see, said the wise man! Demar coming back for depth would be great and I bet he’d take the minimum for a shot to play with TB12 and make a run at the SB!

Pete Wood
10 months ago

I love this plan, especially trading down to the second round. I’m a little bit nervous about our running back situation. I could see if boiling down to Jones and White with the Bucs scrambling to find a free agent in the fall. Not sure I entirely trust Vaughn.

Captain Sly
10 months ago

Nice work Scott. I’ll start by saying the Bucs won the SB because talent sure but “Hungry Talent”. So with that said I have small disagreements with your strategy. Love Shaq but offering a 4yr $18mil deal may reduce his hunger (D. Lawrence, D. Ford, K. Mack, V. Miller). My strategy would include tagging Shaq having him chase a Big Payday one more year. Love the Ryan Succop signing and I am on board with trading out of the 1st rd. Those mid round picks this draft will be Golden. Cheers!

Reply to  Captain Sly
10 months ago

I think at least 3 of the 4 guys you mentioned didn’t lose their hunger. Von Miller has, I think, pretty clearly entered into an age-related decline phase. He signed his deal in the summer of 2016. Put up 13.5, 10, 14.5, and 8 sacks the next four three seasons. Then he missed last season with a badly busted ankle that required surgery. Demarcus Lawrence put up an 88.5 PFF grade last season. His sack numbers were down, but so too was the quality of his teammates and the defense as a whole. He got a lot of extra attention… Read more »

The Wall
10 months ago

I don’t have any stats to prove it but at times our special team punt and kickoff coverage seemed pretty weak. I think Smith was our best special team player so I would resign him. I would pass on Dotson unless they really believe he could be a quality backup. It’s a big no on Periman for me. Otherwise, great job Scott. I hope it happens.

Reply to  The Wall
10 months ago

Replace Periman with Edelman from NE

Reply to  Eddie
10 months ago

Not sure he’s a good fit in this offense.

Reply to  The Wall
10 months ago

Dotson doesn’t and never has made sense as a backup, as he can only play ONE position at a remotely acceptable level. Put him anywhere other than RT, and we’d absolutely be better off with most available UDFA’s. A player like him only makes sense as a starter. Teams typically carry only 8 offensive linemen, so flexibility is crucial for backups on the line.

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

i agree, he drafted a tackle in the fifth round but ig he’s not good enough to beat out a 36 year old dotson that can’t run block, not a fan of most of this draft tbh

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Dotson would be a backup swing OT. He had reps at LT one offseason/ training camp/ pre-season and did fine. If they draft another OT and bring in Dotson he could help in the development of a rookie OT.

Reply to  The Wall
10 months ago

I’ve been asking about our coverage teams and FG blocking for the last few weeks…even asking if they thought we needed a new ST coach but no response so far.. I saw one stat saying we were worst in the league

10 months ago

how does your 5th round pick not even make the team

Reply to  Tyler21
10 months ago

It’s possible he could be retained by being signed to the practice squad.

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Hope they keep practice squads the same. Loved the flexibility of the covid PS.

Reply to  Tyler21
10 months ago

Exactly! If you’re going to pick a guy in the 5th round who doesn’t make the team, why not draft another PK?

10 months ago

I don’t think it’s bad. I only have a couple of problems. I know we are all humans and we tend to let our feelings get in the way. It’s obvious that you don’t like AB and I don’t think it would matter how good he was last year you would still leave him off the team. I believe that the team will be better with AB. I’M also Considering the fact that Brady likes AB and they have good chemistry together. A good camp and I can see AB having a 1000 plus season next year. The second thing… Read more »

Reply to  Jay
10 months ago

AB will probably be in jail before next season is over. His rape case is set for trial in December.

10 months ago

How does all this happen? Is this really a “plan” if the “how” isn’t remotely explained? I count roughly $75M in new money on the books for 2020. I’m no math genius, but I’m pretty sure that just lowering Brate’s pay by $3M this year doesn’t quiiiiiiiite get us to a place where we can do that as of now. Also, and maybe this is just me, but I don’t think Lavonte is worth $16M per year, or all that close to it. Love the guy, and he’s still a stud, but he’s 31. You don’t pay for yesterday’s production… Read more »

Last edited 10 months ago by toofamiliar17
Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Brady’s upcoming extension is how this is going to get done. Agree that $16m is way too high for Lavonte. No team is going to offer him anywhere near that. And he has every motivation to stay here. He loves the team and lives in South Florida. I don’t see any reason not to keep AB. There isn’t going to be a big market for him and he wants to stay. Also Josh Wells should stay. He’s a competent and cheap backup.

Reply to  tiapanda
10 months ago

Brady’s extension alone isn’t even nearly enough to make these moves happen. Seriously, it’s not even close. We currently sit at an estimated $27M in cap space. The signings listed here plus Brate’s pay cut = $75M in new money. Then another $7M needed to sign our draft picks, so really, $82M spent here. So unless Brady’s cap number is going to go from $25M to -$57M, yea, we’re going to need to do a LOT more than just extend and restructure his deal. We could, to go with that, also knock Evans, Marpet, Donovan, and Jensen down to literally… Read more »

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Spot on toofamiliar 17! PR is using fuzzy math again..

Reply to  tiapanda
10 months ago

Wells or a rookie would be good on the PS.

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Exactly toofamiliar17! Scott and the other writers lack knowledge of the business world.

10 months ago

Love the plan, Scott. Although Perriman doesn’t make me believe we have an upgrade. And I’m starting to think you like Williams out of NC. Lmao Worst kept secret. I love it and go bucs.

Mike Pengelly
10 months ago

Saw the tape on your RB draftee…looks amazing and well worth going after at #32 or #34. Good explosive running and good pass catching is a good combination ! Jones will probably leave in 2022 for big bucks if he has a good year this year.

Keith Henderson
10 months ago

I like, but I would be shocked to see the Jets give up that many high draft picks.

Reply to  Keith Henderson
10 months ago

The trade SR presented here isn’t even all that close to being in line with the going rate for such a move (trading back from the 1st round into the early 2nd). Last season, the Pats traded the 23rd pick for the 37th pick plus one third rounder. In 2019, the Colts traded 26 to get back 46 and one second rounder in 2020. The Seahawks traded 30 for 37 and fourth and fifth round picks. The Rams traded 31 for 45 and one third rounder. In 2017 (there were no similar trades in 2018), the Seahawks traded 31 for… Read more »

10 months ago

Great article. Are you planning on following Mike Maycock into a front office position somewhere. Only have a couple of problems with it and that is the money you want to dole out to some if the players due to your emotional connection to them. When making personnel decisions it is best to keep the Bill Belichek approach which worked superbly for years except for one time. Your paying Lavonte David to much money. He has been compensated well during his time here. He is at the end, not the middle of his career. Bringing back Demar Dotson is a… Read more »

10 months ago

Scott, if you DID resign AB what would it be for… I understand where you’re coming from even as he’s given no problems anywhere so far

10 months ago

Have a few issues with this. As a few have already pointed out, doesn’t seem like the money is going work with the amount you’re spending. But here are my thoughts 1) Love Lavonte, but no way am I paying him 16 per. I’d go 2 for 25. Feel confident he’ll take that to stay here. We already have White, who is a star in the making. And it’s a very underrated draft for LB talent 2) I would ask Suh to take a slight discount. He wants to be here, and we could get away with 1/6 3) love… Read more »

Reply to  Dave
10 months ago

I’m with you on most of this. Really strong comment. I don’t see a spot for Dotson as a backup. He can literally only capably play RT. Now, if we had an injury at tackle and RT opened up and we needed a starter, 100%, I’d be down for giving Demar a call. But having one of your 3 backup linemen pigeonholed into ONLY being useful at one of the five positions just doesn’t make sense from a team-building standpoint. I’m right there with you on points 1-3. What I’ll say about White is that if I’m in the Bucs… Read more »

Reply to  toofamiliar17
10 months ago

Yeah Licht has a bad habit(regardless of whether it worked out with Wirfs or not), of reaching for a player he loves. Williams is almost unanimously viewed as a player that will be available in the mid to late 2nd, if not the be beginning of the 3rd. If we traded back and took him in the mid to late 2nd, i wouldn’t have as much of an issue with it. But taking him at 32, or 34 in time mock, is just not smart drafting, when he should he available later in the 2nd As far as White, I… Read more »

Kevin Marbley
10 months ago

I really love your set up, but if we can also bring back Adam Humphrey instead of mickens, and I also agree with resigning Breeland.

Reply to  Kevin Marbley
10 months ago

Pass on Humphrey. Loved the role he played but he’s not a great fit in this offense and he’s tacked on a lot of hard miles. Would take reps away from Tyler Johnson.

10 months ago

Bring back Dotson, really Scott? We held on to him to long as it was. I think it’s better we find a younger option. The Bucs should tag Godwin, then try to trade him for a first rounder. Then I’d rather have two first rounders then trading with the Jets. Sorry Scott, that 5 year first round deal is to sweet to pass up to trade out of.

10 months ago

Hard to believe a RB would be better than a swing tackle at the top of the draft.

10 months ago

I like your thinking, Scott. The question I have is if the Jets would make the draft pick deal, as the picks they’d be getting have a value of under 700, the picks the Bucs would be getting is over 900 in value (according to the draft pick value chart, if the NFL even uses this). The media in NY would probably skewer the Jets for making this deal, IMHO.

10 months ago

“If Cameron Brate wants to come back as the team’s third-string tight end, he’ll have to take a pay cut once again to help the team.” Okay, I’ve heard enough of this crap narrative. Brate was the second tight end for the vast majority of the season and the playoffs. Brate was the best tight end on the team for years before Gronk showed up. OJ Howard can’t stay healty. The greatest ability in sports is availability. Brate plays through injuries, Howard gets sidelined by them. Will Brate take a pay cut? Probably. But the future matters too. Gronk can’t… Read more »

Reply to  AlbJack65
10 months ago


Reply to  AlbJack65
10 months ago

Yeah sure. In a significantly lowered salary cap season, let’s pay our 29 year old( turns 30 in a couple months) 3rd string TE, who can’t block, nearly 7 MIL dollars. Sure. Makes perfect sense. You talk about Howard being a bust, but what has Brate ever done? In 7 seasons, he’s hit 50 catches once, 600 yards once, and 7+ TD’s once. Yet he’s making almost 7 MIL per season. He’s more expensive than Howard. Saying we should resign Brate at 6.8 MIL, as our 3rd string TE, who can’t block, and doesn’t play ST’s, is probably the most… Read more »

10 months ago

Well, the off-season speculation and the conjuring up of very uncertain roster moves is in full swing. Thank goodness this year it didn’t begin before Halloween. I can surely appreciate the effort Scott and others make in forecasting free agent signings, Draft selections and even some unlikely trade scenarios. Sort of like going into Hooters and fantasizing which of the ladies you would favor and be most likely to give you a chance at a date if only you had enough available cap space. Then of course there would be the inevitable friendly criticism suggesting that you should have gone… Read more »

10 months ago

Scott, you had me until your first draft pick is a RB. I know the draft is thin in DL talent, but we need to younger both in the middle and on the edge. I like your emphasis on O Line.

10 months ago

I like the plan but I do not believe that Barrett will return for 18 Mio/Year. Maybe he will accept 19 but there will be Teams (e.g. Jets) that could offer him about 20-21 Mio/Year

Bradenton BucFan
10 months ago

Big mans game and i like the Tar heel RB, Chazz could be stud.

10 months ago

We need more hungry Buccaneers; not pacified senior players. You’re keeping too many declining players and paying as if this was their first ever 2nd Contract. Big mistake. Brady is the key and he has proven he can adjust. Barrett, Godwin, David, Suh, Gronk are all being overpaid.

Reply to  Horse
10 months ago

Gee Horse, being a somewhat “pacified senior” myself I’m going to show a little more of my youthful side by becoming offended. Not going to cancel you though. LOL!

Reply to  scubog
10 months ago

Right, ha. Getting experienced older players at minimum deals is ideal with the current cap and helps improve depth, granted at the expense of developing some draft picks. But you can do both I feel Horse and still be better off over all.