“We Just Have To Sit Down With His Agent”

January 26th, 2011

Per The Tampa Tribune, Mark Dominik doesn't want a new starting middle linebacker in 2011.

Pouring over game tape incessantly, as he is known to do, Bucs general manager Mark Dominik has reached a conclusion that he wants Barrett Ruud in the middle of his 2011 Bucs defense.

This news, sure to drive some Bucs fans to near insanity, comes courtesy of Tampa Tribune Bucs beat writer Woody Cummings, who chatted with the rock star general manager at the Senior Bowl festivities today.

“Barrett had another good season for us,” Dominik said. “He led our team in tackles again and he had more splash plays for us this year than he did the year before, which was good. Now we just have to sit down with his agent.

“And as these things always go, there’s always two sides to it. Just because you say you want to sign him and because they say they want to be back, that doesn’t mean that’s how it’s going to work out.”

As Joe wrote on New Year’s Day, Raheem Morris likely doesn’t want to part with his stated “quarterback of the defense,” even if he’s not on his way to a Pro Bowl anytime soon.

If there’s really an open checkbook from Team Glazer and a real drive to go for a Super Bowl now, then maybe Raheem wants the comfort level of Ruud in the middle and would rather invest in the positions around him.

Of course, there’s no guarantee Ruud and the Bucs will find common ground on cash.

Considering the possibility of a lost offseason program due to a lockout, Joe imagines that bringing in a rookie or outsider into the center of the defense would present a challenging task to get the guy up to speed in limited time.  

Should be a fascinating series of negotiations. Joe just can’t believe the two sides will be close together.

39 Responses to ““We Just Have To Sit Down With His Agent””

  1. gitarlvr Says:

    I bet a whole lot of people are praying that Barrett Ruud asks for way too much money. LOL!!!

  2. sunrisejeff Says:

    I’d have no prob with them bringing him back for the right price……especially until we are SURE that McKenzie or someone else can step up.

  3. bucfanjeff Says:

    Thumper or not, he’s the brains of the defense to get us lined up correctly. You can’t just plug somebody else in there and expect them to bark out the correct adjustments. How many times last year did he have us lined up or audibled correctly that we DON’T know about? You can’t just let a guy like that go. I agree the price should be right, but he’s worth a good bit of money. Not pro-bowl money, but top 8(ish).

  4. Jake Says:

    Maybe he will give Rudd a Michael Clayton type contract, after all that one worked out so well for him.

  5. Capt.Tim Says:

    I expect that Ruud will leave. He has more value in a different scheme than he does here. MLB is just not a key position in our Defense. He’s more of a Larger strong safety. Some teams would like to see Ruud as a more traditional MLB in their defense. No matter how much your payroll may be, you still want to pay the right price for what you are getting. MLB is the game breaker for us. This defense is predicated by the 3 technique DT, the weakside Lb, and the Corners. Those are the players that get the Big money in Tampa

  6. Capt.Tim Says:

    Sorry, MLB is NOT the gamebreaker in our defense

  7. jvato24 Says:

    When I read between the lines here it sounds like Ruud will not be here next season, Just by him saying it may not work out opens that to me ..

    In a previous question about Davin Joseph he had a lot more to say about his play and made no mention of it possibly not coming together ..

    The Bucs dont want to disrespect Ruud by saying he is as good as gone… They will let him test FA and would sign him back for a bargain price …

  8. ScottB Says:

    I’d let him test the market. He’ll find out there’s not a big market for under-sized, under-achieveing MLB’s.

  9. cjackson Says:

    joe no big deal or anything but the bucs just had a meeting with allen bailey at the senior bowl

  10. Tom Says:

    Capt Tim,

    If MLB isn’t very important to our defense than can you please explain how Hardy Nickerson went to the Pro Bowl 4 times (96, 97, 98, 99) and Shelton Quarles went to the Pro Bowl in 2002. It would seem hard to believe that a position that wasn’t emphasized on a defense (like say…SLB) would ever go to a pro bowl let alone five times by two different players.

  11. gotbbucs Says:

    The difference Tom is that Nickerson and Quarles didn’t get steamroled by Rb’s and Lineman on a consistent basis.

  12. Jonny Says:

    I would like to see Ruud signed, not because I am a huge fan of him, but because I look at the roster and thought of Tyrone McKenzie and/or Dekoda Watson at MLB scares me.

  13. Guest#27 Says:

    Mark Dom said “Just because you say you want to sign him and because they say they want to be back,”

    and because THEY say they want to be back… THEY as in the coaching staff.

    Truth is, it may not even be the Bucs call on this one. Ruud probably just wants to leave AND get paid. He probably is tired of the local fan bashing.

    Problem for the Bucs, we have no replacement.

  14. ScottB Says:

    “Barrett had another good season for us,” Dominik said. “He led our team in tackles again and he had more splash plays for us this year than he did the year before, which was good.”

    Is this a left-handed complement or what? Ruud had ONE INT and TWO forced fumbles…How bad was he last year? And the MLB or ILB almost always leads any team in tackles. The only exception this year was Seattle.

    And I don’t want to hear the crap about his pass coverage. He had all of FIVE passes defensed.

  15. Guest#27 Says:

    Mark most likely got his information from the coaching staff, not the stat sheet.

    I have a feeling the Bucs have a number they won’t go over, and odds are, there are 31 other teams out there, and I’m sure there are a couple that will out bid the Bucs.

    It’s probably over tbh.

    The Bucs would have to get in a bidding war to just keep him.

  16. jvato24 Says:

    Ruud could go to another team and be a good LB … Might be a better ILB on a 3-4 team as he would get more help and is good in zones.

    Ruud is just not the ILB for the Tampa Bay Bucs .. with Faster Lighter DTs the Bucs need a Thumper …. But Ruud is not a bad LB IMO

    The main reason I would be surprised if he came back is the fact that he is not a Leader .. If Ruud was more of a commander he would probably be back.

  17. BigMacAttack Says:

    I agree with gitarlvr. I hope he demands $100 mil guaranteed and then takes a hike.

    And it isn’t personal, just time for an upgrade. Ruud plays about 10 years older than he is. He never gets injured or even slightly banged up. What does that tell you for a position that typically involves hitting on almost every play?

  18. the_buc_realist Says:

    So what is the going rate for a slow safety that can call defensive plays?

  19. Ericd Says:

    Dominick should sit down with Daven Josephs agent first

  20. thomas Says:

    You guys are so lost. You have no idea what the position MLB in the defense mandates. It is not blowing up fullbacks or pulling guards on every running play to stuff RB’s at the linne of scrimmage.

    The MLB’s job is: read steps (usually back on passing downs), get to your gap first and fill if run, and get your man or zone if pass. Most teams pass more than 50% of the time.

    Barrett is excellent at all of those fundamental concepts (especially against the pass where he is near the top in the legaue), which is why it would be a terrible decision to try to replace who you “think” is stouter against the run (who will most certainly be worse against the pass).

    Thankfully, even though Rah and Dom are inexperienced, they are smarter than you commenters and will be resigned for solid money. Unless he is just flat tired of totallt undeserved criticism that he takes for making drag down tackles down-field out of his gap (usually b/c Geno Taze was totally out of position).

  21. thomas Says:

    sorry for the typos, using a diff keyboard

  22. Pete 422 Says:

    I just find it hard to believe a MLB doesn’t have major run support responsibility. We’ll see what people actually do instead of what they say (diplomacy is part of all of this). I don’t see them over paying Ruud.

  23. thomas Says:

    The MLB has major run support responsibility on plays in his gap, and must secondarily flow to the football – that is where you guys get confused.
    If he fills his gap and then flows to the ffootball and makes a drag down tackle from behind or the side for a gain of 5 to 7 yards, that is a positive play by him and a negative play by the player who failed by either being out of position or getting blocked to make the play.

    Most of you just see Barrett making a play 7 yards downfield and assume that the play came from his gap. Usually it didn’t.

  24. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I sure do love the way Thomas has all the answers. I forgot, what team did you pay MLB for? You are totally wasting your skills on this site, you should be at the Senior Bowl with the coaches, lol. Have you really convinced yourself that you are this knowledgeable, or do you know you are full of sh!t and just enjoy pretending to be?

    Fact is, as with all our free agents, we are not going to overpay for Ruud. In his case, I’m okay with it either way. If some team is willing to pay him “elite” money, then they can have him. I would also be okay with it if we brought him back. He is not a big time player – never has been, never will be. He is, however, very consistent and dependable. I do not believe that he is a weak link on this team, but definitely not a strong link either. Like most average players, he will be better with a better supporting cast, which I think we are on the way to getting.

  25. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Just curious, Thomas, when Ruud meets a running back head on, gets run over, and the RB continues to run, is that also a positive play by him? I’m just trying to make sure I understand all the duties of a MLB, since I am so lost and confused.

  26. Capt.Tim Says:

    Oh my god! I agree with Thomas last two post! Well we’ve argued all day about it. One thing is clear. Some guys understand responsibilities in our scheme, some don’t. The one thing to comfort Ruud. They bitched about Nixkerson and Quarles too- same thing! No matter what Joe, Jeff Carlson, Mark Dominick, Raheem Morris, Steve White, or Shelton Quarles say- some guys can’t get over that our MLB is more safety than LB. Oh well, at least it’s a fun discussion!

  27. Capt.Tim Says:

    Buc Realist- not much, especially since Ronde Barber can call the plays. That’s the problem for Ruud. His market value is waaaay more than he’s worth to us. He can do alot more than we need him for. That’s why I predict we will lose him in FA. Because , other than Play calling( not that difficult!), the skill set needed for our MLB isn’t hard to find!

  28. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    @Captain Tim,

    It is a fun discussion, and I have a funny feeling we will be having it many many more times.

  29. Tom Says:

    What Thomas appears not to mention (or be aware of) is that Ruud has a bitch of a time shedding blockers and maintaining his gap. I don’t know if you saw the Detroit game where they were running up the middle at will but that’s what happens when your MLB gets stood up and washed out of a play and naturally it’s happened with Barret lots of times (Wash, StL etc).

    Being good against the run is not about making a bone crushing hit, hell if he never did that once but was able to stop the RB by giving up only 2/3 yards because he wasn’t glued to an O-lineman then THAT is success. Not this 5-7 yard “positive play” BS. He is not a safety, nor is he supposed to play like one in Tampa’s D.

  30. BigMacAttack Says:

    Okay, you guys have convinced me that an undersized MLB with spaghetti arms and marginal speed is not a necessity in Raheem’s defense. As long as he gets the where and when part of the equation, that is good enough. He just needs to get his hands on the RB and slow him down enough until 3 or 4 other players can get there and help make the tackle. 4 passes defended and one interception on a season is great. He did cause that fumble against the Saints near the goal line. That may have been his best play of the season and to think he saved it all the way until game 16t. I get it now, bend but don’t break. Bungee up and call it good.

    Who wants a defense like the Steelers anyway? And that Dick LeBeau guy just doesn’t get it. He should take note and make a play for Barrett Ruud to shore up his defense. After all he will be a Free Agent.

    Come one, come all, come sign the best MLB of all. Ruuuuuuuuddddd…. oh yeahhhhh.

  31. Pete 422 Says:

    I like this. “Flow to the runner & MLB makes the tackle.” At the same time, “Runner runs through MLB’s gap & get run over.” But that’s OK.

  32. adam from ny Says:

    most likely you should resign ruud and upgrade the 2 guys on his left and right…if you have a couple potential pro bowlers next to ruud you have a perfect linebacking crew….and if your back ups are hayes and black (black could be gone) or hayward, that works…and monitor the development of mckenzie….that should be the plan,,,,adam fro ny

    ps and of course draft a backer or even 2 in the draft

  33. grasshopp427er Says:

    jvato nailed it. we’ll take him back if no one else will pay him anything. so if he ends up back here next year it tells you what the league thinks of him.

  34. k1ngAdroc Says:

    Until we have a better option we have to attempt to sign him for reasonable amount. He isn’t the best MLB but he certainly isn’t the worst, either. We watched him get juuked out and run over… he also made a FF on the goal line to keep us in the playoff hunt.

    By the way, Nickerson was a thumper and everyone knew we meant business when the Bucs got him in FA to build a D around… It doesn’t necessarily have to come from Rudd, but we need more physical play from our front 7.

  35. Capt.Tim Says:

    Ruud is considered one of the top 10 free agents. He is projected to get major money thrown at him, more than he is probably worth to us. He will excel in most defenses, and will probably look for a defense that features the MLB, unlike our defense.

  36. Architek79 Says:

    Capt.Tim you said,” He will excel in most defenses, and will probably look for a defense that features the MLB, unlike our defense.” Man are you smoking something? Ruud feature? That comment alone is a disgrace to the great MLB that has played in this league. Even the past Bucs MLB’s that were better and more physical than this clown.

  37. Bucworld Says:

    I love it when they say “Ruud is the brain of our defense and he knows our system”. As if no one else could come in this off season and learn the defense. But I guess Ruud is the only smart person in the NFL that could pick it up. Give me a break.

  38. gotbbucs Says:

    ruud has had two consecutive contract years and he’s underperformed in each. anybody who says he played well either hasnt payed close enough attention or doesnt have a clue.

  39. tha truth is... Says:

    people act like Ruud is tha only player with intelligence who can call our defense. It is what it is Ruud is slow and not physical. His tackle #’s don’t mean $H1t.

    @ Joe
    Can u by any means find out of all his tackles this season, how many were at tha line of scrimmage vs downfield? I think that’ll help solve tha problem far as Bucs fans being divided in opinion as 2 keeping or releasing him.