Pricey Vets On Thin Ice

February 20th, 2010

NFC South beat scribe Pat “Vacation Man” Yasinskas, of, chatted with his minions Friday and the subject of Bucs roster cuts was brought up.

That’s when Vacation Man raised the excitement level among many Bucs fans. He agreed with a chat room commenter who believes Michael Clayton will be cut soon, among other veterans.

Kevin (Scranton)

Pat, Which veteran players will the Bucs release in the coming weeks? My moneys on Clayton, Ward, Leftwich, and Hovan.

Pat Yasinskas

Think you’re pretty much spot on with that list. Say hello to all my family and friends in Scranton.

Joe would be quite surprised to see the Bucs release Clayton,  as it seems the Bucs still owe him $3 million guaranteed. Plus he has so little, if any, trade value.

As written here previously, Joe suspects Hovan will be gone, and Leftwich leaving town is a given. As for Ward, the reality is he had very limited opportunities last year and had some minor injuries.

A decision on Ward surely hinges on some monstrous questions at the running back position:

1) Is Earnest Graham the starting fullback in 2010? Or will they bring back B.J. Askew to compete with Chris Pressely. If Graham is the fullback, then that changes the game greatly and it’s unlikely Ward would be dealt or released.

2) Joe’s not sold the Bucs will offer restricted free agent Cadillac Williams a deal in the coming weeks. That offer has to be over $2 million, as Joe understands the RFA rules. And despite his success last year, Caddy is damaged goods.

3) Regardless of their decision on Williams and Graham, the Bucs have an old stable of backs. Are they looking at drafting a running back in the second or third round? That will also weigh heavily on their call with Ward.

Joe suspects the Bucs will keep Ward unless a great trade offer for him arises.

12 Responses to “Pricey Vets On Thin Ice”

  1. Eric Says:

    If they cant land Suh, perhaps trade down and grab either Dez Bryant or Spiller, making Clayton or Ward or Caddy expendible. Go heavy on D in round two…………surely Leftwich is a goner no matter what.

  2. Eric S Says:

    I would keep Caddy. He did a hell of a lot better than Ward did behind the same mediocre OL. Caddy will always have injury concerns, but I feel he still has several good years left in him.

    Wouldn’t mind Clayton being cut. He has done nothing since his rookie year. They do have to get more WRs though.

    Ben from Tampa is an idiot.

  3. Radio Mushmouth Says:

    There was never a game when we ever gave Ward a chance to get in a rhythm…i wouldn’t write him off so soon. He is a solid player if given the carries.

  4. Mike J Says:

    I think the minimum tender for Cadillac is $1,226,000. The Bucs could just let him walk, or try to re-sign him to something above the league minimum, I would think. They don’t have to tender him.
    Either Ward or Williams needs to go, IMHO.

  5. larryed Says:

    If Clayton is due another $3,000,000 guaranteed there’s no way they can afford to release him. Yeah he takes up a roster spot but he is a great blocker.

  6. thomas Says:


    the fact that clayton has no trade value supports outrght releasing him. it makes zero sense to say that you would be surprised by a release of a player who had no trade value. the only choice is to eat all guaranteed money and cut your losses.

    if you were to argue that clayton may not be cut b/c dom and rah would be admitting a colossal mistke and waste of money – i would agree.

  7. Joe Says:


    Ego plays a factor too. Mark Dominik’s ego.

    Joe pointed this out as recently as yesterday. Dominik admitted to Tim Ryan and Pat Kirwan on Sirius NFL Radio’s “Movin’ the Chains” just last August that he took a gamble on Clayton.

    Dominik’s not going to admit to such an expensive mistake and let Clayton walk with all that cash. Dominik — and the Bucs — are determined to get something from Clayton this season with that contract, even if it’s only a stellar opening-season game.

    Unless Clayton shocks everybody and makes a Pro Bowl, it will be his last season in Tampa Bay.

  8. d-money Says:

    “Unless Clayton shocks everybody and makes a Pro Bowl, it will be his last season in Tampa Bay.”

    I don’t care if he scores 20 touchdowns, makes the Pro Bowl and gets Joe a date with Rachel Watson it had better be his last season here.

    Even if he has a good year he wont reapeat it the following year.

  9. Nick Says:

    Joe, A little off topic but i am planning a trip to Tampa this summer. Could you or any else tell me when fanfest is or if they even announced it yet??? Thanks in advance whoever answers….

  10. Thomas Says:


    thanks for the response. i understood you to be in favor of giving the current regime another chance, yet you acknowledge that only “ego” serves as the basis for retaining Clayton.

    I understand the org will have to eat his 3 million guaranteed either way, but quality orgs make tough economic decisions to keep the best 53.

    The next person who argues that Clayton should be kept b/c he can block should be slapped. An offense does not succeed b/c of blocking receivers – a-holes. How well do devery henderson, lance moore and robert meachem block?

    Receiving threats do more to open the running game than receivers blocking.

  11. Tristan Says:

    I say since he’s primarily a blocker, put him at tight end. At least then, we’ll be getting what we expect from him.

  12. RastaMon Says:

    Clayton was not even wearing a helmut when he scored his first NFL touchdown !
    he was the 5th WR taken in his draft…..and that was with the 15th pick….
    I will never get over that reasoning…..