About the author

Scott Reynolds

Scott Reynolds is in his 23rd year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds enjoys 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: [email protected]

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  1. 1


    Much appreciated Scott. Fab Five is an institution among Bucs fans “in the know”. The other more gossipy, less content-driven, sites are for the bottom dwellers (generally speaking) that focus on their feelings instead of the facts and who can’t read more than a hundred words at one time without their eyes glazing over and drool coming out of the corner of their mouths. I have to admit, though, that I wish we were still getting that magazine in the mail like we used to. Ah…the good ol’ days! 😉

    Back on topic, I’m excited about Sweezy being healthy and Marpet moving to center. With Pamphile at LG and Smith at LT this line looks like it has the potential to be absolutely dominant in the running game, and at least decent in the passing game. That’s why I agree with you that the Bucs will draft a RB in the first few rounds this year. They simply cannot pass up the chance to take advantage of this line’s potential in the running game combined with a super strong RB class in this year’s draft.

    Bring on the draft!

  2. 2


    re: Fab 2
    It’s definitely noteworthy that centers are cheaper than guards, all things being equal, but I’m also not sure it would actually save us money, unless we ultimately franchise Marpet once his deal is up. If the money is important to him, he could easily leave us for a team that’s offering him the opportunity to play guard, where he’ll make more money both in the short and long term for the remainder of his career. He’s already flashed All Pro potential there. Even if he plays center for us for the next two years, that doesn’t mean he couldn’t ultimately be back to playing guard for a totally different team come 2019 if it pays him better and/or he enjoys the position more.

  3. 3


    The only Fab 4 I strongly disagree with is Obi. I just can’t understand anyone who describes this guy as being “physical”. When he takes a good angle to a ball carrier, and when he’s entirely unblocked, then yes, he is a good tackler who can lay some big hits. The problem is how infrequently he actually gets to that point. I watched 5 full games of his film, and I literally saw him shed exactly 0 blocks. No matter who got hands on him – a OL, TE, or WR – if an opponent got hands on him AT ALL, he was completely done. It was like he vanished off the screen. When paired with his generally bad awareness (trusts his eyes way too much, ignores his keys as simple play fakes and misdirections constantly pull him way out of position), I have no idea why anyone like this guy as anything more than a 3rd round pick at the most. And that’s really only because of his athleticism. The dude’s film is mostly BAD.

    I’ll be thrilled if one of our division rivals use their pick on him, and crestfallen if we burn the 19th pick on him.

    He’s an underwear olympics champion. There’s a really good reason his hype train really only took off after his athletic testing. Coming into the draft season, he was seen as a 2nd or 3rd round pick. Why? Because his film is absolutely chocked full of troubling holes and huge problems that, if they persist, will render his athleticism completely useless in the NFL.

    Last thought on the draft threats for our rivals – the idea of John Ross playing with Drew Brees and under Sean Payton made me physically ill for a moment. I know they desperately need defensive help, and that hitting on a pick there will likely improve them most, but wow. The things Payton could do with a guy like that are terrifying.

    1. 3.1


      Have to totally agree with you too. Obi is an warrior in the gym, but his play does leave a bit to be desired. The only way I would want the Bucs to get him, is if we used our late second round pick to get him. He’s not a 1st round talent on tape. This is way I hate the combine sometimes. People put WAY too much stock into it. As for Ross to the Aint’s, I don’t think there is any way they can’t take a defensive player. Their defense has been horrible for like 10 straight years now.

  4. 4


    That’s a number the Bucs have never had to deal with before as the franchise has never signed a quarterback it has drafted to a contract extension. Not first-rounder Vinny Testaverde from the 1998 draft. Not Trent Dilfer from the 1994 draft. And not first-rounder Josh Freeman from the 2009 draft.
    Didn’t Chris Simms sign a 2 year extension in 2006?

  5. 5


    Scott you mention all of the good young players we have that will demand big contracts in the future. It’s obvious all can’t be retained for cap reasons. Is this where Licht puts in play some of the lessons he learned from his time in N.E.? What I mean by that is the Pats have been know to trade players, even pro bowlers, at the peak of their careers for high draft choices rather then pay them big money. This allows them to keep the pipeline going of good players on the cheap. The one constant of course is Q.B., that seems to be the only position they put a premium on, and rightfully so. Heads turned when they traded one of their best L.B.’s this year, didn’t stop them from winning the S.B.. Not saying it should, but the same could happen to Kwon, Smith, or any other player that could fetch high future picks. They also seem to know when to let go of a great ageing player no matter how popular rather then pay them. So guys like McCoy may never see another big contract. Hard choices, hurt feelings will have to be made in the future. That’s where Licht will have to earn his pay check, now’s the easy part, your thoughts.

    1. 5.1


      I think Licht would be smart to take that approach. If I were the Bucs, I’d trade MCcoy right after next season and get a 1st for him. Of course you have to replace that with a pick this year or next, but it’s something to look at. I know I’ll catch hate for the MCcoy trade suggestion, but I wouldn’t mind it one bit for a 1st.

  6. 6


    Rick Stroud of Tampa Bay Times seems to have a different take on what the Bucs told him about Mike Evans – that the fifth year extension means the Buc’s won’t worry about a long term contract for Evans at all this year, and that the Bucs are also perfectly prepared to franchise Mike after next year. That could be just posturing – but it’s pretty unlike Jason Licht to do a lot of posturing.

    Jameis Winston will certainly get paid well enough, though again, like Mike Evans, the Bucs may decide to simply exercise his fifth year option, and then possibly even franchise him later on. None of that has anything to do with his obvious value to the team – it’s just business. And Jason Licht is very business like in the way he runs his front office.

    As for Adrian Peterson, I am not necessarily a fan of bringing him to the Bucs … but in his remarks posted online this week he stated unequivocally that salary is not a motivator for him .. he strictly wants to go to a team where he can help them win a championship. Working out with Jameis could just be coincidental, but certainly not necessarily. Dirk Koetter’s remarks to the media this week that he’s “very anxious to hear Jameis’ opinion of his workout with AP”. and Koetter’s statement that he has always loved AP as a player, ought to signify interest.

    We’ll see .. most likely AP and the Bucs will wait to see what comes out of the draft. If we take someone like Cook in round one, that makes it virtually impossible to bring AP here … but if we don’t take a running back til the middle rounds, and with Doug Martin having to sit out the first three games of the season, which are critical to getting off to a good start … and if AP were willing to take a modest salary (I don’t know what that would be … maybe $5M give or take?) … there could be a deal to be made.

    1. 6.1


      I see it as if the Bucs sign AP, they wouldn’t have to worry about RB in round 1. Now they would definitely draft another good one, he’ll maybe even cook if he’s there in round 1. Look what Tennessee did last year. They signed the veteran and drafted a RB as well and it led to the number 1 running game in football. We’ve seen that Licht likes to bring a veteran in for a stop gap and draft a player the same year. I personally really like the strategy.
      Now much like yourself this would hinge on AP taking “friendly” deal and he would probably only see a 2 year deal. Heck if he’s in shape, and he’s kind of freak, cut Doug and give him Dougs 7 mill. That way you aren’t paying anything more out. It is interesting to say the least, but it does appear that Coach is genuinely intrigued about AP.
      At first I was totally against the move of bringing him in , but in the right circumstances, I’m slowly coming around on it.
      Heck bring in AP and maybe get someone like Howard, or Njoku in the first and Kareem hunt down the line in round three and that’s some nasty shit. My head is spinning with possibilities.

      1. 6.1.1


        You bring up an interesting connundrum, cg … sign AP now and then wait till later in the draft to take a running back … or wait to see if Cook is available, should the Bucs decide a RB in the first is a good pick (I’ve always been iffy on that one, as you know), and if not then sign AP.

        It could go either way. If it becomes a pre-draft decision to sign AP, I’ll take a wild assed guess and say that Jason Licht will probably wait til the last minute before the draft to make his move, maybe to see how the winds are blowing on their draft board as well as how much interest other teams are showing for AP.

        Buckle up … I’m expecting a very interesting month of April here in Buc-land.



          Why do you folks keep referring to Adrian Peterson as “AP” as his name would suggest? His nickname is AD as in All Day. What ever he is called, I would be very cautious with a likely very short remedy to our RB situation.



            The Bucs (Coach Koetter) are clearly concerned with a short term situation at running back this season.

            They’ve got a known factor of Doug Martin, their leading rusher of the last 5 seasons, being suspended three games at the beginning of the season. For a team needing to make the next step up – making the playoffs for the first time in 10 seasons – those three games are vitally important to not just write off.

            Secondly, even if Martin is back to his old form from 2012 and 2015, he is still subject to injury as he so often was in 2013, 2014, and 2016. So a quality alternative to Martin is also vitally important.

            Given all that, so what if AP isn’t a “long term solution” … the Bucs problem is not long term, it’s this year.

    2. 6.2


      Cook is not a bell cow RB in the NFL. He is a 12-15 touch per game back. He is a 3rd down back who could replace Charles Sims. That is it. He is not Leonard Fournette or Adrian Peterson. At 5’10 / 210 lbs he’s lighter than Doug Martin who is 5’9″ / 223 lbs. At the combine Cook ran a 4.51 and in 2012 Martin ran a 4.55, so the speed is about the same. Doug Martin is STILL the better option as the primary RB in Tampa. His suspension hurts the team in the short term and they are disappointed obviously, but Martin is entering his prime and it would be a mistake to cut him in favor of a lighter rookie back with QB protection issues, injury issues, and his own close calls with the law.

      1. 6.2.1


        BucWilde – I’m not advocating cutting Martin. As I’ve commented many times in the threads here, it makes perfect sense for the Bucs to keep him until “D-day” – the day after the third week of the regular season, when his four-game suspension will be completed. See how he holds up in pre-season practice and games, then they can decide whether they have a better alternative to Doug, or not.

        But it is clear that the Bucs are not satisfied to stand pat and depend 100% on Doug Martin being the Martin of 2012 or 2015. They WILL bring in more talent in the running back corps – either through free agency, a trade, or in the draft, or some combination thereof.

        Adrian Peterson is clearly an option for the Bucs – he’s free, he says he’d like to play here (his first choice amongst his options), and our quarterback enjoyed working out with him, and our head coach says he wants to hear from his quarterback about Peterson’s play.

        We can bring in AP, if a reasonable salary can be negotiated, try him out in pre-season and the first three games of the regular season, and probably also draft at least one RB … and then may the best man get the most snaps. Or maybe both or all three of them



          Naples: It’s AD not “AP”. If you’re going to pimp the guy at least know enough about him to get his nickname right.

          Of course he and even coaxing “Beast Mode” out of retirement are options. I just don’t see either as viable ones with their likely salary demands, guaranteed amount and the concerns about them being able to regain their former skills given their age. I think we’ll draft a RB in the first three rounds and just sit tight with Doug Martin and see what he brings to Training Camp.

          You say running backs are a “dime a dozen”. I’d just rather spend the dime elsewhere.



            His name is Adrian Peterson, and like all other players I use their initials, not some dumb “stage name” or whatever promoted by fans who are not Bucs fans.

            You really need to get over your fixation on your “thing”, which isn’t a “thing”.

            AP is Adrian Peterson.

      2. 6.2.2


        Haha, this coming from the guy claiming McCaffery is a generational talent. You claiming that his speed is similar to Doug’s speed is the same finishing the joke with a nice cherry on top. I mean I have to ask, do you drink heavily before commenting?

  7. 7


    I agree with @naplesfan on not discounting the 5th year options and franchising for Evans and Winston. With DJax being a short-term (expensive) rental, I suspect that some of this (Evans in particular) will depend on how well DJax performs this year – if he falls off the proverbial 30+ year old WR cliff, then Licht will probably cut him and use that salary to pay Evans. If he still has legs left, then perhaps all of that gets delayed a year (I don’t have DJax’s deal in front of me, but I don’t recall it having potential dead-cap money after this year).

    As for Winston, barring a disastrous 2017 I don’t see how he signs for only $20m/yr. The comparisons in the table above (absolute salaries) is not how the NFL works anymore. Agents (and consequently GMs) look at percent of the total cap. So if Eli Manning (the 9th highest paid QB) singed for $21m in 2015, that was roughly 15% of their total cap. 15% of the total cap in 2018 might be nearly $25m. Then his Agent will favor guaranteed money, which has been going up too. And of course, if Winston has a good year, his Agent will claim him as a top-5 QB (discounting anyone over the age of 35-ish)…and you can see how there would be little chance of us getting Winston signed long-term for only $20m/yr.

    As for paying Pamphile $8m/yr…not a chance. Marpet yes. D Smith, with any luck we will have moved on from him and be paying a LT on a rookie salary deal.

  8. 8


    Thanks Scott for your fab 5, I think all PR readers were grumpy this week with not having it last week 😳!

    Agree with the line shuffle to get the best 5 on the field. Also 2 TE that are threats helps that line too.

    I little off topic but questions for you before mock 4.0:
    Mcaffery is more of a better Simms replacement than an every down RB. Simms is who he is and don’t think he back unless. Heap.

    How likely is Licht to trade out of 19? (Up or down). We’ll see how the drat rolls but 19 could be the fring of round 2 (like players)

    Why has there been no chatter on Maye as a round 2 option at S?

    Trevor report on Miami TE concerning on effort – heart. No passion & grit = ASJ.

    Thanks as always Scott, in Licht we trust- GO BUCS

    1. 8.1


      Mudman – Maye in round 2 is probably going to require a trade up from our spot to the upper half of round 2 … but if we trade down in Round 1 then that certainly becomes do-able at a reasonable price. Good safety talent this year, and we need more talent there, so a safety in the first two days of the draft seems like a very good possibility.

      1. 8.1.1


        Naples I agree with you. Safety needs to be addressed in the first 2 rounds, but all the safeties thrown around will not be there at pick 50. Maye the most likely to be the latter between baker & Obi (whom I’m not in love with).

        So then the BUCS would have to use 19 to get one of the which I’m I. Favor. I would much favor jockeying down & around to get one of the S.

        I truly believe the Bucs need to get playmakers on offense first and foremost. They are very very thin at WR, dicey at RB and need another passing threat at TE. Safety to me is less of priority in rd 1.

        I hope they move up to get playmaker WR but mostly move down to get an extra pick or 2 to maneuver in rd 2 like last year

    2. 8.2


      Why do some folks keep adding an extra “m” to Charles’ last name? It’s Sims not Simms (like Phil and Chris)

  9. 9


    Excellent Fab 5 Scott. There’s a lot to digest with the 29 million cap money left as about half of it will be used for draft picks and free agents after the draft? My guess is they keep the maximum they can carry over for 2018 and I don’t know what that might be? Anybody know? I’ll just say for right now say 10 million for 2018 carry over, which doesn’t leave much yet to pay for Free Agent acquirement before this draft .

    I love the Marpet move to Center. I’d rather keep Evan Smith over Hawley. My whole past point with Hawley is he wasn’t good enough in protecting Winston and still is. I hope they keep Gottischalk, but if we draft a Center in the later rounds I’m fine with it.

    As to the other NFC South teams with the draft,I hope we don’t move up; stay put or trade down.

    1. 9.1


      For your sake my friend, I’m pulling for Gottschalk too.

  10. 10


    Nice work, Scott. With two minor personal exceptions (mentioned below) I think you met your standard. Great job on Fab 4 in particular and the NFC South picks. I agree with your picks. And any real Bucs fan gets queasy when they consider the potential threats going to division rivals, particularly players we’d love to fall to us. Hey, isn’t that a foreign concept of late? Players falling to us because we’re drafting in the lower half of the draft? Hopefully that trend continues.

    My quibble is with the first two Fabs and their focus, almost entirely on player salary. Between Fab 1 and 2 only there were ~ 31 (!) line items relating to player salaries alone! We get it, some raises are coming up and cap scrutiny is important. So basically Fab 1 is about Winston cashing in (with an uncomfortable emphasis on the conjecture that his performance is solely linked to his desire to cash in; he’s getting paid regardless and doesn’t seem the type to quibble about dollars) and Fab 2 is about Marpet cashing in to a potentially lesser extent (moving from 12M to 9M annually necessitates watching that grocery bill just a bit closer). My point it you could have covered all of that as one subject – cap awareness – instead of using 2/5 of your Fabs to do so. And I only mention that because we all look forward to your Fab 5 and perhaps I’m alone here, but I much prefer the human interest and/or draft intrigue angle you typically portray (Fabs 3-5). As I said, cap awareness and scrutiny is certainly important but I would prefer a separate non Fab article to cover this (however suferdude’s comment is an interesting and salient one and worth exploring further IMO). And if I’m the lone voice out hear suggesting this, and from a quick glance at the comments it seems I might be, I’m sure we can look forward to more of this in Fabs to come.

    But not to make too fine a point on that, I enjoyed your hard work here as always. We’re all getting antsy as the draft is now less than a month away.

  11. 11


    I also like the possibility of signing AP if it is for a 1 or 2 year deal at a reasonable price. Doesn’t kill the cap. “If” he has some left in the tank that would scare defenses. Minn line was bad last year & they couldn’t throw (no threat). The Bucs can throw well so it takes sole focus off AP., and off Jameis.

    Obviously at right deal

  12. 12

    Buc 1976

    AP needs to walk off into the sunset while he still can walk

  13. 13


    if Jameis performs at a true pro bowl level (not alternate) and leads the team to the playoffs, he will probably add at least $3-4 million a year over a 5+ year deal to his value

  14. 14


    Thanks Scott. I had nightmares about Brees and John Ross just then. I thought your players for our division rivals was spot on. Great read.

  15. 15


    I replied to the original Marpet story when it broke but I did it on my phone so perhaps it never went through.
    Horse, why in the world would your want a bench warmer playing center over a starter. What kind of logic is that.
    Hawley came in and made the line better from the start when he replaced Smith who has yet to get his job back.
    It’s also nice that Scott Reynolds is so casual with Marpet’s money. I wonder how he feels about it.
    We had areal good center/guard play here back in the 90s who the Bucs wanted to play guard while he wanted to play his natural position of center.
    What happened?
    The first chance he got to play center he signed with the Panthers and we never saw him again.
    I’m sorry I forgot his name.
    You might take that under consideration unless you plan on making a center your franchise player and then there goes the money savings.
    Besides, moving Marpet to center doesn’t cure the biggest ill of the Bucs which is left guard.
    I know the Bucs like Pamphile, but if you watch any tape of the offensive line last year it is pretty apparent he is the weakest link on the line.
    The two biggest indicators of that were on Winston’s big scramble play against the Bears where Pamphile failed to pick up a stunt and the 3 yard TD run by Martin in the home game against the Falcons when an Atlanta player blew past Pamphile and almost tackled Martin in the backfield who escaped and was lucky to get the TD.
    Finally, the only difference between the Bucs solid O line In 2015 and the barely average line in 2016 was Pampile replacing All Pro Logan Mankins.
    So how does moving Marpet to center correct that malady. I say let JR Sweezy earn his keep and play LG and let Pamphille learn how to play RT if he is up to it.
    If not, let him go sit on the bench with Smith, where they both belong.

    1. 15.1


      Dr. D: Are you referring to Tutan Reyes? He was a former Buccaneer who went to Carolina but he played OT for them not center.

  16. 16


    Gee Dr. D I was hoping you could remember the guys name who left here and apparently did little in Carolina since he’s not their center now and must have had a forgettable career. At first I thought you were thinking Zuttah but he went to Baltimore not Carolina.

    I think Marpet was drafted with the intent of eventually putting him at center. He was a tackle at Hobart. I’m no fan of either Joe Hawley or Evan Smith as the long term answer at the pivot. It’s easier to find a decent guard than a quality center. With five centers on the roster already it looks like it will be a competition for back-ups at both positions. We already have Sweezy to play RG whose healthy presence last off-season would likely have resulted in Marpet’s relocation then.

  17. 17


    I’ve been guilty of calling Sims, Simms, or is it Simms, Sims? Maybe he just hasn’t made enough of a name for himself on the field. At any rate, maybe after the draft I can forget his name altogether.

  18. 18


    As I stated earlier the player in question left in the 90s.
    To be more exact, I think he wad signed in the Panthers first season.

  19. 19


    The players name in question was Jim Pyne.
    I was wrong about where he went after he left the Bucs. He actually signed a FA contract with the Detroit Lions where he played center.
    He was then left unprotected by the Lions in the supplemental draft and the expansion Cleveland Browns in 1999 picked him up and moved him back to guard. He was voted the teams best offensive lineman. He ended his career with the Philadelphia Eagles.
    He was quite a find for the Bucs who drafted him in the seventh round and he started his first year at the left guard position.
    Was referred to as Pieknee around the locker room.

    1. 19.1


      I should have figured that one out since my oldest daughter and he were friends and even went on a couple of dates. Never got to meet him.

  20. 20

    Buc 1976

    The Dallas Cowboys did not build an all star O Line with 4-5 Rd picks! Bucs just draft a darn C in 2nd Rd like Elfin from​ Ohio S.

  21. 21


    Scubog, too bad she didn’t get hitched to him.
    As a fellow father of two daughters, he looked like he would have been a pretty good catch.
    His dad, who played in the AFL, did pretty good for himself after football.
    It looks like the apple didn’t fall far from the tree.

  22. 22

    Rusty Rhino

    All For Mr. Winston to earn more money, I am just not a fan of the 100+ million dollar QB’s it makes it so much more difficult to have a good to better than good football team around these Qb’s.

    I am All for guys getting paid, this is a tough sport. But to the tune of 100+ million dollars for one player how much is this a % of the team cap over the course of the contract? To me anything over 23% sounds like to much. 20% would be better. When you do have 51 other players on your roster who also play and get that same opportunity with their play to earn themselves more money.

    Tough call either way. We pay Mr. Winston and it puts us in a situation like New Orleans. Big QB contract makes it difficult to improve overall team because of financial restraints. This causing other players to need to be let go, players you have trained and help improve their game and your team. Yes it also happens with other teams and positions and some teams play that game very well, Hello! New England.

    I am very glad have Mr. Winston on our team, a very vocal in your face leader who works his craft as hard as he can to improve his own skills. We need more of that. Please.

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