Bucs Better Sweat If Donald Penn Doesn’t Show

June 28th, 2010

Like Anwar Richardson of the Tampa Tribune pointed out last week, fellow Bucs beat writer Stephen Holder of the St. Petersburg Times explains how the Bucs, thought by many to be cheap, would save money by meeting embattled left tackle Donald Penn’s contract demands.

Holder is convinced Penn will not be in attendance when the Bucs hold their first training camp practice at One Buc Palace July 31.

That’s when the Bucs better start sweating. They need to improve their fortunes after a 3-13 season. And after last offseason’s many shakeups, they’ve seen first-hand what unexpected changes can do to a team (changing coordinators, quarterbacks, etc.), and they would be unwise to compound those mistakes.

For a team that is betting so heavily on quarterback Josh Freeman, it makes little sense to leave his blind side protected by a second-year project, Demar Dotson. And even if Penn were to ultimately cave, the question remains how much is gained and lost under such a scenario?

Ask yourself: How many blows is Freeman subjected to in the meantime as the club quickly gets into its preseason games? How much cohesion is lost among the members of the offensive line because one of their key components is missing? And what, exactly, is the long-term plan at left tackle, a position that has been unstable here for too many years? For all the talk about building for the long term, the decision not to sign Penn sure seems short-sighted.

For those that claim Joe is posting too many Penn articles, Joe suggests people point fingers at the parties involved in Penn’s contract talks. To quote Holder, Penn’s contract status “represents the biggest issue facing the Bucs.”

Don’t blame Joe!

38 Responses to “Bucs Better Sweat If Donald Penn Doesn’t Show”

  1. Louie Says:

    For a guy who allegedly has no leverage, Penn can wreak havoc with those first 3 regular season games. If he holds out until just before the season opener, then winning those 3 games is going to be difficult. If the Bucs don’t come out of the gate 2-1, it’s going to be real tough to win 5-6 games many are predicting.

  2. Eric S Says:

    If Penn doesn’t show up, the Bucs will be in trouble.

  3. Steve from Oregon Says:

    The problem is…..let’s say the Bucs cave and give him the long term deal he is looking for, your basically telling the quarterback of your defense “Barret Rudd” that Penn is more important that he is(Although that may be true) that would cause some serious.

    This is getting worse by the minute, I wish there was some way to just give him an upfront bonus without having to sign him to a long term deal right now.

  4. Steve from Oregon Says:

    serious issues….sorry..typing while talking on the phone.

  5. RahDomDaBest Says:

    It’s simple… unless Tampa want’s to become the Florida Marlins where they don’t re-sign their young, then we will become a farm team as such.

    They need to lock up Penn AND Ruud… that is all to obvious. It’s not going to hurt the Bucs to sign these guys to 3-5 year deals. It won’t HURT Tampa at all.

    The Glazers claimed they want to draft and re-sign their young, well, DO IT.

  6. BamBamBuc Says:

    1 player does not make or break a team. There are 10 other guys on offense that will have to step up, plus his replacement and the coaching.

  7. TJ Says:

    Was wondering Where is Xavier Lee in this all you hear about is Dotson as the replacement

  8. Joe Says:

    Was wondering Where is Xavier Lee in this all

    Um, maybe quarterbacking some semipro team in Italy?

  9. TJ Says:

    Oops Joe I meant Xavier Fulton

  10. Joe Says:

    Oops Joe I meant Xavier Fulton

    LOL Oh, OK. Was wondering there if you had continued your weekend into Monday. 🙂

    Haven’t heard an Xavier Lee blast in a long time.

  11. bucfanjeff Says:

    Sign him, since – well, the Penn is mightier than the sword.
    I’m here all week! Bada Bing!

  12. Louie Says:

    Steelers just lost their LT for the year. You think Dominik would be willing to deal Penn?

  13. Bucnjim Says:

    Since the Bucs have close ties with the Steelers; I’d say you may be on to something….

  14. JimBuc Says:

    No one is intrigued by the fact that Penn has not demanded a trade and the Bucs have not moved to replace him?

  15. Louie Says:

    The Bucs have failed to make a lot of moves they should have made. So, that side of it doesn’t surprise me at all.

  16. RahDomDaBest Says:

    Well first off the Bucs would have to sign him before any trade….. but actually, tradibg Penn for a 2nd or 3rd rounder would be far better than just letting him walk in 2011 for nothing.

  17. JimBuc Says:

    Pretty sure he cannot walk in 2011 for nothing, absent a change in the CBA

  18. JimBuc Says:

    I think you maye be missing the point of my question. All the other players is Penn’s situation (there are only a few left) have demanded trades or the team has brought in a replacement. Why not with Penn and the Bucs?

  19. eric Says:

    Moving to replace him would cost money.

  20. JimBuc Says:

    Eric — so will signing McCoy and Price and Benn etc. So did signing the Eagles safety even though we have Sabby, etc. etc. etc. The money for a replacement is not the issue. I know you are angry, but you can do better.

  21. Louie Says:

    @JimBuc: They HAVE to sign their draft picks, but they eased the pain by cutting Hovan and AB (among others). Also, do you really think Jones’ contract is huge? Hardly. Signing a quality LT is not going to be cheap. The Bucs won’t do it unless they can unload Penn.

  22. JimBuc Says:

    Man, you guys are hopeless. Cannot even address a simple (positive) point because the “Bucs are cheap” and “we hate Glazer” mindset rules the day.

  23. eric Says:


    Because the rest of us do not appreciate the positiveness of the Penn situation.

    In between working as the towel boy for the Glazer’s Day Spa, take a deep breath and look at things with a bit of perspective, sir.

  24. JimBuc Says:

    Eric, you of all people should never lecture anyone about perspective. Your love for Gruden/hate for Morris blinds you to even the most obvious facts. Unfortunately, you are not alone.

    In any event, all but the most ardent angry fans, should be capable of picking up on the one positive I was alluding to. Problem is we have a lot of ardent angry fans, so let me state it clearly (so all the ardent angry fans will no what facts they are ignoring)

    If the Penn situation was as dire as many try to make it out to be, then Penn would have already asked for a trade (he has not) or the Bucs would have already brought in a replacement (Louie, it would not have to be an expensive replacement. To prove their point with Penn they would have brought anyone in). If you take just a couple seconds to look around the league, you will see that the very few players that have taken Penn’s stance are players that are arguably at an unbreakable impasse with their team. Most are players whose credentials exceed Penn’s and most, if not all, have demanded a trade (and, in fact, did so before the tender deadline). On the other side, most of the teams with players like Penn have brought in other players to fill the void (either practically or symbolically). So, why has Penn not yet demanded a trade? Why have the Bucs not brought anyone in yet? One reason would be that the two sides are not actually that far apart philosophically. In other words, Penn understands his situation is tied to the CBA (He already said so explicitly) and the Bucs know that Penn will play.

  25. JimBuc Says:

    McNeil is a 2 time Pro Bowl left tackle with the Chargers. He is taking the same stance as Penn. This is how the Chargers responded:

    “On Wednesday, the Chargers signed three-time Pro Bowl tackle Tra Thomas to a one-year contract. The Chargers have bolstered their offensive line with the free agent signing of three-time Pro Bowl left tackle Tra Thomas. Thomas provides the Chargers with valuable depth and experience at left tackle”

    Thomas is 35 years old, Louie. He is not very expensive but he was signed to send a message to McNeil

    How about the Patriot and their guard Mankins. Just like Penn, he refused to sign his tender. Here you go:

    “New England Patriots left guard Logan Mankins, a restricted free agent, didn’t sign his contract tender by midnight Monday and asked to be traded, according to ESPN.

    Along the way, he ripped Pats owner Robert Kraft, which is never a great idea: “After the 2008 season, me and my agent approached the Patriots about an extension, and I was told that Mr. Kraft did not want to do an extension because of the (uncertain collective bargaining agreement),” Mankins told the site. “I was asked to play ’09 out, and that they would address the contract after the uncapped year. I’m a team player, I took them at their word, and I felt I played out an undervalued contract.”

    He went on to say, “I don’t need to be here anymore. This is about principle with me and keeping your word and how you treat people.”

    Anyone here Penn say anything even remotely close to Mankins even though he is in exactly the same situation??

  26. eric Says:


    One reason does not equal the only reason.

    The fact that you are probably right does not make it a non-story. Beacuse of the importance of Penn to this team, it makes it troublesome.

    Thus, it aint a positive. Potentialy a huge negative.

  27. JimBuc Says:

    Eric — never said that the Penn story was a non-story, just a story with a near certain outcome BECAUSE OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES. Penn could still do soemthing crazy, but it does not look that way.

    Man, it is going to make some of your cohorts angry that you said this: “The fact that you are probably right . . .”

    Here comes Thomas and Capt Tim and BigMacAttack to set you straight Eric!! 🙂 🙂

  28. Joe Says:


    Joe Twittered about that earlier this afternoon.

  29. gotbbucs Says:

    Penn will show up for training camp, he’s a team player and understands what it would do to the rest of his teammates if he were to miss the season. He’s just trying to prove a point to the organization and evidentally working out on his own this summer. Everybody just cool it.
    I think you’re probably pretty close in thinking that the FO and Penn have an understanding about the rare circumstance that the entire NFl is in right now. The CBA will hopefully get settled out before the 2011 NFL calendar year starts and Penn and Ruud will both get their deals.
    Does everybody really think that Dominik is going to let half of the team walk away next year in Free Agency? Of course he doesn’t want that to happen, but his hands are kind of tied just like almost every other GM in the NFL right now.

  30. Capt.Tim Says:

    Nah, JimBuc, I’m fairly close to agreeing with you on this one.but Penn sitting out til opening day is still a big problem, as the line won’t have worked together all off season. Penn can’t force them to sign him, but can still make them wish they had!

  31. Bucnjim Says:


    Good post! I like the way you support your arguement with actual facts. I don’t agree every time, but this time you make a very good point.

  32. Bucnjim Says:

    I think if Penn holds out much longer it may hurt his value with the Bucs or possibly another team next year when he looks for a new contract.

  33. Capt.Tim Says:

    Eric thinks the Glazers are out panhandling on Dale Mabry. I’m sure they get a pretty big kick outta that, while they are slurping down $900 dollar bottles if Wine at “Berns” this weekend. Meybe Eric could hold a bake sale, or a fund raiser, ta help the poor guys out! “buy a Pie, ta sign Penn”
    Eric worrying about the Glazers “money trouble”! Oh, yeah, that one still cracks me up! After he straigtens out those poor Glazers, hope he can swing by and take a look at my Stock portfolio. Really want an “expert opinion”, lmfao

  34. Capt.Tim Says:

    JimBuc and BucnJim- holy Christ, he’s multiplying!!!,call the Army, sound a red alert
    Still think both of ’em are “joe’s” secret identities! Lol

  35. Bucnjim Says:


    I’ll say it again; you’re one funny dude. Actually I was bored with the lack of intelligent conversation on CBS. The arguements here are so much more entertaining. Rahdomdabest is a comic to say the least.

  36. tampa2 Says:

    Why would it hurt Ruud’s feelings if Penn Pens a new contract? I like Ruud too, but they are both grown men and Have chosen different paths to gain whatever they can from the Bucs. The Bucs have more to lose in this than Penn does. Because if Penn doesn’t show and Freeman gets hurt, the Glazers can only blame themselves. What then? JJ has to run for his life every play too? I personally think that Penn will show sometime before the start of the season. But like others have stated, how time will it take Penn to get in Playing shape? Not to mention the O-line’s cohesiveness.
    Domiik needs to grow a set and tell the Glazers that he is going to sign Penn to a contract that they can all live with.

  37. JimBuc Says:

    “The Bucs have more to lose in this than Penn does.”

    Oh boy . . .

  38. Capt.Tim Says:

    Psst, don’t tell RahDomDaBest he’s funny! I know he’s hilarious, but he thinks he’s actually making serious post ! If he finds out we’re all laughing at him, it’ ‘ll make him cry! Then he’ll stop posting! We are all in on it, he’s the only one that doesn’t know!