Raheem Implies Free Agency Is The Wrong Way

January 4th, 2011

Joe is fired up at the prospect of the Bucs dusting off the checkbook in March to get a big time pass rusher in the building.

It worked before with Simeon Rice helping push the Bucs over the top. And Joe surely sees no reason why bringing in a couple of free agent studs on defense should automatically impede the Bucs’ plans to build organically with youth. That’s just foolish.

If you pick the right guys, then free agency is a great friend, not the dark path Joel Glazer called it in 2009 (only a few weeks after the Bucs made a run at Albert Haynesworth).

But Raheem Morris doesn’t seem to agree with Joe, per his comments last night on WDAE-AM 620. Morris all but dug his heels in the turf and said the draft is the only way to go.

“I start my draft process here coming up very shortly. …[Mark Dominik and the staff] give me a list of people. They give me a list of the top 100 by position. And I get a chance to start breaking them down, looking at all those guys and going through the process that I like to go through in whatever format I’m feeling that day. To name names, we don’t tamper in Tampa. I can’t actually call out games of the guys you would like to have.

“We look forward to the draft. It has to be big around here. You know, we got a saying, ‘We want to draft players that we want to re-sign.’ You know everybody goes out looking for free agents. But we want to draft our guys, get’em here, let’em grow, build them, and then re-sign our guys. Let’s be right in the draft, and let’s do it the correct way.”

Frankly, Joe doesn’t see how Raheem and Dominik could dislike free agency in one breath while claiming at the same time that they’re always looking to do everything they can to upgrade the football team. Something doesn’t fit there — sort of a clash of core beliefs.

Regardless, Joe believes the head coach and general manager will do whatever it takes to deliver the best Bucs team for 2011. They’ve earned that respect after dumping Jim Bates and righting the ship in a big way.

36 Responses to “Raheem Implies Free Agency Is The Wrong Way”


    The Steelers and Pats rarely sign high-priced free agents…

  2. SkookumSmitty Says:

    Rah’s quote:

    “I start my draft process here coming up very shortly. …[Mark Dominik and the staff] give me a list of people. They give me a list of the top 100 by position. ”

    MAN, would I love to get a look at THAT list!

  3. DailyRich Says:

    I don’t think those comments preclude using free agency at all.

  4. Travis Says:

    There isnt alot of roster space for dead beat free agents, we proved we have too many young guys that have too much talent to let go. If we keep 6-7 rookies from this upcomming class, and sign say 4-5 freeagents, what 10-13 players are we cutting from this years team?

    I can see where Raheem is comming from. go get a COUPLE guys in free agency that we know can contribute, rather than sign a bunch of old dudes to take up valuable roster space for raw talent Raheem can coach up. LOGIC

  5. Guest#27 Says:

    You are right Travis. We don’t have room for free agents unless we get one stud DE or one stud CB or one stud LB or a FB.

    The rest should come from the draft. And that draft needs to be LB, DE and CB plus o-line depth.

  6. Burton Mercer Says:

    Signing a big name, expensive free agent has worked out well exactly one time in Bucs history, and that was Simeon Rice. Most of them become prima donnas when they get that big check.

  7. Chris Says:

    hindight being what it is. knowing what we know now, could julius peppers have made a nice addition to the great draft the bucs had? the point is the bucs do not have to act like the redskins and sign everyone virtually ruining team chemistry but a smart addition can take a team to the next level. I agree joe.

  8. Dave Says:

    I see them doing the same thing they did the last 2 years: build with the draft. DE & LB mainly.
    They might add a free agent or 3 but they are not going to be big names in my opinion. It would be more like a Sean Jones signing: a good, young player who hasn’t reached his prime.

    Besides, How many big name free agent signings have actually worked in the last 10 years?

  9. Joke Says:

    @Burton Mercer: I think you’re forgetting Hardy Nickerson.

    My gut feeling about big-name, expensive free agents is the same as Burton’s – busts-in-waiting. But as I think about it, I don’t know if the facts back that up.

    The Bucs really haven’t gotten that many big-name free agents. The only other one I can rememeber is Alvin Harper, who definitely was a bust.

    Is there anyone else I’m missing?

    Keyshawn wasn’t a free agent (we traded for him), but maybe he should be considered for these purposes. I’d say we probably didn’t get as much from him as we wanted, but all-in-all he was a net positive for the team. Definitely not a bust. He was a key component in the Super Bowl win. He was a bit of a distraction for most of his time with his Bucs, and then a huge distraction at the end. Kinda like Sapp.

  10. flmike Says:

    Take a look at how this team is being built, Dominik & Raheem are following a blueprint that has proven results (Steelers/Pats). Take into account in Their ability to evaluate talent (an ability that has been missing from this organization for years *cough* gruden/allen) and you are looking at a sustainable formula for winning for more than just a 3 year window, you are looking at Patriot type winning for multiple years.

  11. Teflon Don Says:

    Ray Edwards or Lammar Woodley pass on everyone else

  12. Dave Says:

    For those dumping on McCoy and saying he did not live up to the hype:

    43 tackles, including six tackles for a loss with three sacks, five passes defensed, and one forced fumble

    People who were down on McCoy have to realize that DT is one of the harder positions to come into the NFL and succeed right away. Those numbers are every bit as good or better than every first year DT taken in the last several years. Don’t get me wrong, he was not a world beater, but he was good and is on target for great things. He got better as the year went.

    Please do not compare him to Suh…. Suh is an abnormality. He is a freak that comes along once every couple decades if that.

    I can’t wait to see Brian Price in the mix next year. If you recall, he was the most productive in the offseason and preseason.

    I am also liking what we saw from Okam in the short time he was there.

  13. Guest#27 Says:

    Patriot type winning for years to come? Come on, talk about over doing it.

    If the Bucs finish 8-8 next year it wouldn’t surprise me at all, with the tougher schedule and all. And it wouldn’t even be a disaster. It would be par for a rebuilding team against a tough schedule.

    I would wait to see the Bucs actually make the playoffs and beating good teams more consistently first than claim they are on a Super Bowl run.

  14. d-money Says:

    For every one Simeon Rice there are a dozen Alvin Harpers.

  15. lakeland bob Says:

    Teflon Don-Perfect list,I would reverse the order but would be happy with either one.

  16. Oahubuc Says:

    “@Burton Mercer: I think you’re forgetting Hardy Nickerson”


    Aside from Hardy’s play, his leadership was HUGE to that young defense.

  17. Teflon Don Says:

    yea honestly thats all we need a good DE i dont care if its Edwards or Woodley i would prefer Woodley also but either one is an upgrade.. and add a DE in the first.. we’ll be pretty solid up front

  18. Thomas 2.1 Says:

    Free Agents: Brad Johnson, Mike Pittman, Keenan McCardell, Randall McDaniel, Jeff Christy, Simeon, Shelton Quarles (from the CFL I believe), Roman Oben, Ken Dilger, Warrick Dunn (the second time) I can probably keep going if you like.

    The point: you must supplement the draft with solid (not necessarily luxury players) but solid players.

    This team desperately needs passrushers and run stuffers – they are out there.

  19. bucfanjeff Says:

    When a player signs a nice FA deal, the odds that he feels “he’s arrived” is big and they have tendencies to rest on their laurels. That’s why FA is a bust a lot of times. Just look at a lot of last years FA’s – what impact did they have as a whole? Minimal.

  20. Chiefbucsfan Says:

    Mark Dominik and Raheem Morris are not going to spend money on free agents. The reason is that they realize that in a few years they will need the cap space to resign Freeman, Blount, Williams, Benn, McCoy, Price, etc.

  21. McBuc Says:

    Thomas 2.1 beat me to it. He is right on this one. You guys are over looking a bunch of guys that helped this team out over the years. I would have added Joe Jerivisiuos (or however you spell his name)., but Thomas’ list is pretty solid. There were others as well.

  22. McBuc Says:

    The winning record will help bring in the FA guys as well. I bet if Fat Albert was in FA this year, he would pick the Bucs over the Skins.

  23. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I don’t give a damn how we do it, but I want some people that can rush the passer next year. Until/unless we regress, I am going to trust this regime to get that done. Have they not yet proven to us that they can get it done?

  24. jEsTer Says:

    Robert Mathis,Logan Mankins thats all we need!!!

  25. RastaMon Says:

    I have not read a reply to this thread…..but I will say that it started with #56….the Bucs didn’t go after Simeon and Keyshawn until all else was in place including the team culture
    LB’s are weak….DE’s then RB…..STFU…..this roster is one play away from NO freak’n running game
    so I’d draft 2 RB’s
    2 DE’s
    2LB’s in no particular order can go to camp

  26. Joke Says:

    “For every one Simeon Rice there are a dozen Alvin Harpers.”

    In Bucs’ history?

    Name them.

  27. Patrick Says:

    We need free agents!

    Just look at our schedule next year. It’s brutal. We’ve got the whole NFC North (Bears, Packers, Vikings, Lions, who will be good next year) our division, Dallas (they will bounce back), SF, Colts, Texans (they’ll be better as well), Jags, and then the Titans. All those teams could be very good. We need to making a playoff push next year and the only way we’re going to do that is by digging into free agency. We need serious help on the D line and that’s going to be the key for next year. There’s people like Ray Edwards that will be free agents next year. Our line is already young enough and ineffective enough as it is. Get a pair of rookie DE’s and there’s a great chance that they won’t do crap next year. Time will drag on and we’ll have to just wait for them.

    Also, we need to make the talent better around Price and McCoy. Moore, Crowder, and White? Bennett? We need an established, proven pass rusher out of free agency.

    We already have our young core from 2 drafts in place. Now is the time to add on in free agency and put us over the top.

  28. gitarlvr Says:

    @d-money- you have no clue what you are talking about. How many bad free agent pickups were made during the Dungy era? Simeon? Brad Johnson?
    Trading for Keyshawn? Thats all pro free agency people are talking about. One or two blockbuster free agents. Even Gruden started off making excellent free agent pickups like mccardell, jurevicious, and Roman Oben- which is exactly what put Tampa over the top to win that super bowl. Gruden doesn’t go out and sign those guys? Tampa doesn’t win a super bowl in 2002. Guaranteed. Did Gruden lose his way and overreach, out of desperation, for aging free agents to keep the train moving since he the draft had not yielded the necessary players? Yes. This is an entirely different situation and the people that don’t see that obviously don’t like to use pesky things like thought and logic.

  29. gitarlvr Says:

    @DailyRich- I agree that nothing in Raheems statement sounded like any kind of denial that the Bucs would be active in signing any big free agents. Every team signs free agents. The Bucs signed a few free agents last year and will sign at least a few this year. Thats guaranteed. The only question is whether those guys will be cheapo free agents meant to compete with the bennetts and crowders as stopgaps in the event that the guys drafted to fill those holes aren’t ready for prime time year one, or whether they will be big name guys who will guarantee the Bucs a shot at making a playoff push NEXT YEAR regardless of how next years rookies progress.

  30. Pete 422 Says:


    Who will be the available DE/DT free agents that we should go after?

    Conversely, who should we target in the draft?

  31. gitarlvr Says:

    @pete 422


    Here you go dude. Its pretty comprehensive list of the free agents at all positions with analysis of the top guys at each position as well as whether they are their teams are likely to try or even be able to resign them or not. Ray Edwards, Mathias Kiwanuka, and Charles Johnson look like the prize guys. I would say the risk is too high on Babin being a one year wonder even if he doesn’t resign with the Titans. I’ll tell you two free agent DE’s the Bucs don’t need to sign- Tim Crowder and Stylez White. The fact is free agency haters- there is no reason to resign either of those guys and there is no reason not to sign replacements for them with at least one of those guys being a “big name”. Counting on a rookie DE or two to come in and start and help lead this team to the playoffs or even the super bowl is kinda a longshot to say the least. I mean we got McCoy at #3 in the draft and he didn’t even really come on until over halfway through the year. You guys want to bank on a DE drafted at #20 to lead us to the promised land next year?

  32. Pete 422 Says:


    Thanks for the link. I agree with you about signing a couple veteran DE/DT to help lead this team. build with the draft and fill a few holes with free agency. I do however, believe it’s important to draft a potential stud DE for the future. What they do with MLB is of key interest to me. I see Ruud more as an OLB.

  33. 2 Buc Bill Says:


    i totally agree. DE should be handled via FA. LB, CB, OL should be handled via the draft…and I don’t mind drafting a DE, but not until the 3rd round or later (jared allen, elvis dumervil, justin tuck, and trent cole were all 3rd-5th rounders)

  34. jEsTer Says:

    Mathis would be a great fit,already knows the system had 11 sacks.Mankins still the most respected guard by D-linemen. Make a trade for A.J. Hawk he is much better suited for the T.2.

  35. Jerry Says:

    In other words the Glazers said no money for the Bucs again this year…

  36. ARMY BUC Says:


    Free agency is great but we need to trade up and snag Cameron Heyward from OHIO State. He was a monster in the Sugar Bowl!