Bucs Could Change Approach To BennettFebruary 19th, 2013
Joe talked to oily yet very cordial superagent Drew Rosenhaus this morning, but Rosenhaus said he won’t comment on Michael Bennett’s contract negotiations with the Bucs, or anything related to Bennett. So that leaves Joe to speculate.
Given the fresh legal troubles of Da’Quan Bowers, who could get sacked big time by New York City courts, it’s reasonable to wonder whether that situation will affect the Bucs’ approach to re-signing Bennett. He’ll be on the open market in 21 days if the Bucs don’t ink him to a new deal or tag him as a franchise player before the March 4 franchise deadline.
Joe has to think Bowers’ gun shenanigans won’t radically change the Bucs’ plans but will at least make them a little more likely to franchise Bennett. They simply can’t afford to lose Bennett for 2013. Per BSPN, Bennett played a stunning 84 percent of defensive snaps, and every Bucs fan knows he played well. The Bucs aren’t good enough or deep enough to wave goodbye to Bennett. Plus, they have the cash to spend.
While the franchise tag would cost the Bucs in the neighborhood of $10.5 million for 2013 — and inflated rate for Bennett — it at least lets them avoid guaranteeing Bennett $20 million over, say, three years, which is likely what he’d be seeking in a new contract.
Joe has no clue how this might shake out, and Joe couldn’t press Rosenhaus into any hints.