Are The Bucs Preparing To Pursue Julius Peppers?

February 22nd, 2010

Count Tampa Tribune Bucs beat writer Woody Cummings among the non-believers, when it comes to the Bucs sitting out free agency.

In his Sunday column, Cummings explained that Bucs fans shouldn’t fall off their chairs if Tampa Bay makes a run at free agent Julius Peppers. Cummings makes the case that Mark Dominik’s priority is to improve the pass rush and recent talks with Dominik lead him to believe the Bucs’ personnel czar has a big move in mind.

Plus, Cummings points to Dominik’s track record of offering Facestomper Haynesworth a bundle of money last offseason and signing the likes of Derrick Ward, Byron Leftwich and Angelo Crowell, and inking Michael Clayton, Kellen Winslow and Antonio Bryant to big deals.

It is too soon to know if the Bucs will be more or less active this year, but if you listen a little longer and a little closer to Dominik, you have to believe he has at least one impact move on his mind.

Much as he has done with his philosophy on building through the draft, Dominik has made it abundantly clear in recent weeks he puts a premium on rushing the passer.

That, of course, is one of the Bucs’ biggest weaknesses, and a look at this year’s prospective free agents suggests the opportunity is there for the Bucs to immediately address that need.

Julius Peppers, the Carolina Panthers’ versatile yet disgruntled defensive end, is at the top of that list, and he is almost certain to be available once the signing period begins March 5.

Based on what they did last year, it wouldn’t be out of the ordinary for the Bucs to apply the money they offered Haynesworth to an offer for Peppers, or to make a slightly smaller offer to Aaron Kampman of the Packers.

While Peppers is a notorious yet reclusive head case, there’s no doubt he’s an immediate game-changer on the Bucs’ defense.

Maybe, if the market isn’t hot for Peppers, the Bucs could actually get him. Joe can only fantasize that Peppers would salivate at the chance to stick it Carolina twice a year and be motivated for another good season or two to guarantee himself a spot in the Hall of Fame.

As for Team Glazer forking over the cash, the elimination of the salary cap floor in 2010 has Joe very skeptical. But if season ticket renewals are dreadful, they might need the spark that Peppers and a stud rookie defensive tackle would provide.

8 Responses to “Are The Bucs Preparing To Pursue Julius Peppers?”

  1. Radio Mushmouth Says:

    We will pursue him , and Peppers will simply use us as leverage to get a better contract from another team , just like Haynesworth did.

    It will be just enough to get us unduely excited…

  2. Mike J Says:

    I don’t think Peppers’ recent play justifies the money he is going to want. I have been surprised at the negative, caveat emptor-type things I’ve read about him recently,allegedly from league sources.There seems to some thinking that he will get his payday, & then rest on his laurels.

  3. adam Says:

    think osi umenyiora…pull a move for osi…hes younger and dom likes trades….so get that done….if you get peppers, one day and you dont exactly know when because it will sneak up….he will be old….having lost a step…then thats it….remember kevin carter the old willy vet with an empty tank…….adam from ny

    osi and kong suh…..a quick fix to the line…………sign bad knee wilkerson on the cheap ……you have styles j fox……dump ryan sims & hovan……. maybe keep dre moore even though he is just a dissapointment so far….you got kylie minogue…i mean moore…….

    and whats up with antonio piece as he was cut….he did all the play calling in new york….if there is any plan on dumping ruud, pierce could be a short term quick fix with experience…but he does have neck issues i think.

    remember if someone has a issue give them a tissue…….

    if someone has issues give them a magazine rack……….

    adam from ny

  4. JDouble Says:

    “Are The Bucs Preparing To Pursue Julius Peppers?”


  5. mohak Says:

    As exciting as it would be to see the Bucs make a play to get Peppers I really hope the guy we DO get regardless is Kyle Vanden Bosch if he hits free agency. Chucky said that at Gaines’ first press conference that he wants Gaines to lead the league in effort and right now in his mind that guy is Kyle Vanden Bosch. Though he’s a couple years older and less physically gifted than Peppers. Vanden Bosch would be an instant leader in the locker room that we need and he’s a high effort, character guy and a very good player.

  6. jvato24 Says:

    Antonio Pierce .. Really ??? He is one of the slower LBers in the league .. People talk about fixing something that wasnt really that bad with something or someone they are clueless about ..

  7. buccsallday Says:

    The bucs can really need someone like Peppers to help the bucs D, and it could also mean that the Bucs don’t have to use there first round pic and trade up for suh, they can trade down and get more pick to help rebuild the team, it would be a major impact if Julius sign with the Bucs, tell me what yall think about that.

  8. Half full Says:

    Say NO to Peppers