Jeff Demps Chooses Family, Patriots

August 22nd, 2012

Joe just got bombarded with e-mails and Twitter messages about how, if the Bucs signed former Gators slash player and Olympic medalist Jeff Demps, why, he would be the answer to all of the Bucs ills and by golly, Greg Schiano would be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy aloft in victory come February.

Well, Demps showed up at One Buc Palace today alright, wearing a New England Patriots uniform. Demps signed with the Belichicks, turning his nose up at the Bucs citing the “family” of the Patriots, writes Scott Reynolds of

As it turned out, the Patriots won the recruiting battle and Demps, who played football and ran track at the University of Florida, is thrilled to be playing with Tom Brady and Co. and didn’t have a hard time deciding between New England and Tampa Bay. Demps traveled to New England for a workout on Thursday and flew back to Florida on Friday and signed his three-year contract, which features $211,000 of guaranteed money, according to, with the Patriots.

“Once I talked to the Patriots I got the feeling that that’s where I wanted to be,” Demps said. “Everything was family-based. It was like I was already part of the team. It wasn’t hard for me to decide to go with the Patriots.”

Simply put, Joe isn’t losing any sleep over this. For the most part, Olympic athletes rarely have the same success in the NFL as they have on the track. Earlier this week, Joe had a link of the Top 10 NFL Olympians, and Nos. 6-10 were largely forgettable.

Joe also scoffed at the notion that Demps would help sell tickets because he played for the Gators. Ahmad Black had a better career as a Gators safety. How many tickets has he sold? Seems there have been multiple blacked out home games since Black joined the Bucs.

Then there is the ugly little stat unearthed by cricket-watching, scone-loathing, Deadspin-tarred-and-feathered Peter King of Sports Illustrated that Demps was a fumbler at the University of Florida.

That’s a cardinal sin in the New Schiano Order.

52 Responses to “Jeff Demps Chooses Family, Patriots”

  1. Drew Says:

    Money is my Family?

  2. BrianW Says:

    Not fair to call him an “olympian”. He’s a football player that happens to be fast enough to be an olympian. He had a good career for the Gators and is deserving of a shot in the NFL on that basis alone.

    Was he worth a 7th round compensatory pick? Depends if he makes the team right? Most don’t. We had 2 bites at the apple and lost out, no big deal. He’s not the next Adrian Peterson anyway. Also, offensive players sell more tickets than defensive, although the Bucs defense as a whole sold a heck of a lot of tickets in the glory days!

  3. Jarret Says:

    He leaves his family in florida for the patriots “family”.

  4. TheRealVince Says:

    Gator fans are soooo delusional

  5. Donut Glazer Says:

    Demps was obviously collateral for getting the patriots to practice with the bucs, and to have Belichick teach Schiano a few basics. For Demps, Belichick even went on the local radio to praise Schiano for his disciplinarian nature. Both the Bucs and Patriots win here…

  6. Plats Says:

    yeah def payment for a Bilechick coaching clinic…

  7. robert Says:

    soooooo, a week ago he was the second coming. i.e. pointing out the track stars that made it in the NFL…..and now he’s …meh, so what if we didn’t get him-none of those track guys work out anyway.

    which is it?

    truth is anyone with 1/2 a mind would choose the pats, as they have a history of making guys stars in their system.—thats the story. good for him, but c’mon man be consistent joe.

  8. The Dutcher Journal (Pete Dutcher) Says:

    Please, lol.

  9. The Dutcher Journal (Pete Dutcher) Says:

    robert, I could swear Joe said we didn’t actually need Demps.

  10. robert Says:

    sorry, read it a lil more. LOL a fumbler, wouldn’t sell tickets etc. C’mon man. GIVE THE MAN HIS DUE! he stuck it out and won a medal and now is wth the organization that can propel his NL career. seems like a winner to me.

  11. robert Says:

    @ pete- I am not referencing what we need, rather how demps is being portrayed. and I didn’t even know who the guy was.

    just an observation from reading last week and this week. maybe my memory is bad though.

  12. aj Says:

    Robert, I could have sworn you called Joe and I ignoramuses last week for saying that Demps was probably not the 2nd coming. I think the ole memory is playing tricks on you this time.

  13. raphael Says:

    I think Demps will be good and i would like to have him in Tampa…BUT, the truth is he fits The patriots short passing game much better..he would not play as much here, mainly special teams…..No conspiracy or knock on the Bucs…BFD man !

  14. Bobby Says:

    Yeah…Joe definitely said that track stars rarely work out in his original post last week. Robert has selective memory…..relative of Thomas??

  15. Hawaiian Buc Says:



    Heh? What exactly is his due, and why does he deserve it? Nobody from the Bucs (or any NFL team) owes him a damn thing. This isn’t charity, it’s the NFL! That’s great he was an Olympian, but so what? I fail to see your logic. Trust me, if he was going to be a first round pick his arse would have been nowhere near the London Olympics, nor should it be.

  16. Macabee Says:

    Jeff Demps made his choice and I can accept that! I wish him the best. But don’t try to convince us that this was some kind of epiphany driven by family values or his belief that it takes a “whole village to raise an olympian”. My personal opinion – he thought this was the best place to pad his resume should he at some time choose to return to Pro Track. He went where he thought he had the best chance to win. Nobody should fault him for that!

  17. BrianW Says:

    Demps is a football player. Not a drafted football player, but he’s a PRO football player now. He was a college football player. Not a difficult connection to make. Olympic “track label” and debate is ridiculous.

    He won a silver medal in relay right? Do you think that’s why the Patriots guaranteed $211,000 of his salary? Yeah right. Multiple teams wanted him. Obviously. The only debate should be whether the olympics cost him getting drafted or not? And what round it might have been? Both are only hypothetical anyway.

  18. Eric Says:

    If you can play for the real Bellichick why play for the imaginary one?

    Let’s see… of the best coaches ever vs. a relative nobody from Rutgers.

    Probably had to think at least a tenth of a second on that one.

  19. JonBuc Says:

    Even as an admitted Bucs Homer, I can’t blame Demps a bit. Better coach, better team and a better chance to play regularly a la Woodhead and Welker have in somewhat specialized role.

  20. Thomas 2.2 Says:

    Guys: Demps, of course, signed the contract offering him the most guaranteed money.Not surprisingly, Rock Star flamed out again.

  21. JonBuc Says:

    ^^^legal secretary blues^^^

  22. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Tommy’s got it all figured out. We should have just thrown out as much money as possible just to sign him. No matter if he’s not good enough to warrant that kind of pay. It’s also kind of ironic that Thomas the loser whines about how much we pay GMC, Quincy Black, etc., yet wants us to open the bank for Demps. Let’s see if he even makes the Patriots 53 before you put him in the Hall of Fame.

  23. Joe Says:


    Put the whiskey down. Demps is an Olympian first. He won a silver medal. Means he is one of the best track athletes in the world first.

    If Demps was a football player (of at least the same quality as his track stardom) he would have been a first-day draft pick and wouldn’t have messed with the Olympics.

    Saying Demps is a football player first is like saying Eddie Van Halen is a drummer because he learned to play drums before he played guitar.

  24. MTM Says:

    Demps took the money plain and simple. He torches a lot of good teams in college. He is Welkers replacement. Don’t blame him a bit. If he would have had a bad knew injury a year ago. Dominick would have got his man.

  25. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Enough of this craziness. How in the hell can anyone in their right mind say he is Welker’s replacement? Are you freaking kidding me? If you had any idea what you were talking about you would realize that he primarily played RB at Florida. So you think that a former RB in a gimmicky spread offense is going to replace the leading receiver in the NFL? This guy wasn’t even half the player of Percy Harvin, and even he’s not on the same planet as Welker. Whatever you are smoking, put it down, and get back to reality, because you are making yourself sound really stupid.

    And for the record, he didn’t even run on the team that won the silver medal. He ran in the qualifying rounds, but did not run in the medal rounds. Not that it matters (he’s obviously still very fast), but Usain Bolt he is not.

  26. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Demps had 57 total career receptions in 4 full years at Florida. Do you know what Wes Welker calls that? September.

  27. Thomas2.2 Says:

    I agree that it’s crazy to compare Demps to Welker right now.

    However, most people forget that Welker was a RB at Texas Tech until his senior season when he switched to wr.

    They have similar size and both have plus return skills. Demps was a very good RB in the best college football conference – he is NFL ready.

    In football, you never have too much speed.

    Hawaiian: I am not saying guarantee him millions, but beat 211k and get him in camp near his home town. Demps will either make the 53 or protected somehow (IR designation etc).

  28. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    The 211K is just the guaranteed money,no? We don’t know how much the total contract is worth. We also don’t know what his demands were to Tampa. It is highly likely that his demands were different for the two teams. We will never know, but I find it impossible to believe that after all the money we spent this offseason we got cheap when the “next Wes Welker” was available. Obviously they don’t think as highly of Demps as you do.

    As for Welker, he had 259 receptions in college. That’s a little more than 57. He only had 80 career rushes at Texas Tech. He had many more catches than rushes every year. Obviously he always had great hands, and receiving was his biggest assets. Can you say the same for Demps?

    As for never having too much speed, perhaps you don’t remember Dexter Jackson. He was extremely fast. However, just like Demps has the reputation for, he didn’t like contact. Not saying speed is a bad thing, but speed is only a small percentage of what it takes to be successful in the NFL. And he wasn’t even the best running back on the Gators, so calling him very good is a bit of a stretch. If he was “very good”, then he would have been a early pick and track wouldn’t have even been on his radar.

    Obviously he may end up being a Hall of Famer. However, by looking at his college tape, reputation (for not liking contact), and the odds, he won’t be. That’s great if you want him (hell, I wanted to give him a shot too), but to claim as if Dominik made some major screw up is just plain Thomas. Just curious, if he doesn’t pan out, are you going to admit that perhaps just once Dominik was right? Nah, of course not.

  29. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    “Demps was a very good RB in the best college football conference – he is NFL ready.”


    Do you want me to go down the list of better college RB’s from the SEC that weren’t NFL ready? It won’t be very difficult.

  30. Thomas2.2 Says:

    You didn’t watch Demps. He isn’t afraid of contact.

    I agree that he wasn’t Trent Richardson. I love Rainey but they were very close players. In 08, if you compare Harvin to Rainey to Demps – the stats are virtually identical. Yes Harvin is a better prospect bc he is much bigger.

    Before bypassing the draft for the Olympics, Demps was projected a 5th round pick – 3 rounds a head of the undrafted Welker.

  31. BrianW Says:

    @ Joe

    -Just because he’s better at track than football, doesn’t make him a track guy trying to play football. That’s all I’m saying. I’m not trying to say he’s going to be a good NFL player. Just that he’s always played football, not a newbie convert. He’s no “soft” track guy. He’s an SEC RB. The only football he skipped for track was this off season. The entire rookie class of the lockout had the same amount of time off by comparison.

    -Nevermind the technicality that first day draft picks are only the 1st round. I assume you mean top half of the draft? You know better, half the league was picked on the second day or not at all……. so were a lot of Hall of Famers

    -Eddie Van Halen should be left out of this arcane football, rookie FA debate. He’s a music legend for goodness sakes!

    All I’m saying is that he wouldn’t get guaranteed money from a good organization, if he wasn’t a football player. My guess is that they figure he can return kickoffs, maybe punts for a rookie salary. That’s a lot cheaper than Devin Hester, so if he’s good at it they have a deal. He’s got a year to prove it. That’s the NFL, you know it.

    I never even said the Bucs should sign him. We don’t really need him. Just defending the kid from the “soft” implications of being called a “track guy”.

  32. Macabee Says:


    The Jeff Demps contract:

    8/17/2012: Signed a three-year, $1.451 million contract. The deal contains $211,000 guaranteed — an $11,000 signing bonus and $200,000 of Demps’ first-year base salary. 2012: $390,000, 2013: $480,000, 2014: $570,000, 2015: Restricted Free Agent

  33. Mr Lucky Says:

    Demps went to the better team.


  34. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Thanks Macabee, I didn’t know the details but I knew it was for much more than 211K as Thomas claims.

  35. Hawaiian Buc Says:


    Wait a minute, 2008 stats are very similar? Are you an idiot? First of all, rushing stats are similar. Receiving stats, not even close. Harvin had nearly 700 yards receiving and 10 Receiving TD’s. Demps had 140 yards and 1 TD receiving. What a stupid argument! You are ridiculous the way you try to spin things. And you still didn’t answer my question, but I knew you wouldn’t.

    As for him being the same as Rainey, so what? What does that prove? Is Rainey going to be a great player in the NFL? Doesn’t look like it. He’s not even a lock to make the Steelers, especially if he keeps fumbling. So even if he is the same as Rainey as you claim, then even more so I’ll pass. Your argument is a joke, yet you will continue to try to spin facts to attempt to influence any idiot to side with you.

    Obviously many teams made a mistake drafting Welker, but that means squadoosh for Demps. If you can’t compare them, then don’t. There’s a ton of undrafted players that end up being great. But guess what, there’s even more that never play a real game. More often than not, the people who get paid to do this get it right.

  36. Bobby Says:

    Can’t blame Demps or anyone else for signing with the Pats. You play to win Super Bowls and New England is a regular at the dance. I’m hoping the Bucs get to that point but let’s face it…there are 32 teams in the NFL and how many have multiple Super Bowl victories? I don’t care how many videos Belichick took of opposing teams…he’s arguably the greatest coach of modern day football and if you get a chance to play for him, you should probably take it.

  37. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I actually have watched Demps, many times. Gators are still my favorite team, although I admit I don’t get to see them every week. There have been many in Gainesville that have claimed he doesn’t like contact. When the first talk came about in us signing Demps, I immediately called up my cousin, who is a major booster at UF. First thing he told me is that “he’s afraid of contact. Kind of a p**sy in my opinion”. He said many others share that opinion. Obviously they could be wrong, but that wasn’t the first I’d heard of that. So I went back and watched some “highlights”, as well as some regular games. Not one time did he even break more than a light arm tackle. All of his plays are him in the open field running away from people. That won’t happen every week in the NFL. He goes down almost immediately upon contact, and he loves running for the sidelines. If I’m lying, show me otherwise. Bet you won’t do it, because you can’t.

  38. Eric Says:

    My cousin told me he was great!

  39. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Nice one Eric. I knew I was going to get it for that statement, but I was just telling the story. Had he not made that statement, I wouldn’t have went back and watched him play. Initially, I was very excited and hoping we would draft him, but I joined the real world and realized that his odds for success aren’t that great, and he certainly doesn’t need to be touted as the next Wes Welker. If he wasn’t in the Olympics and he wasn’t from Florida, would any of us be having this discussion?

  40. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    ***Not draft him, but sign him

  41. MTM Says:

    @ Hawaiian Buc

    Your right running backs can’t learn to catch and basketball players make lousy tight ends. That’s right Welker was a pro bowl receiver when he came to New England.

  42. teacherman777 Says:

    Who wouldnt choose the Pats!!???

    They are the best organization in the NFL!

  43. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    That is the exception not the rule. Not everyone can learn to catch. And not every basketball player is a great TE. Besides, catching passes as a WR is a million times different from catching passes as a RB. Welker may not have been a Pro Bowler before he came to NE, but he was pretty damn good for the Dolphins. Maybe you should look it up, because you are making yourself look silly.

  44. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    But most importantly, you can’t make players all of a sudden start breaking tackles when they can’t even break tackles at the college level. I’m still waiting for someone to argue that he breaks tackles.

  45. MTM Says:

    @Hawaii 5.0

    Your right Belicheat is an idiot to pick up Demps. Dominick dodged a bullet once again.

  46. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    That’s not what I said. Bellicheck also picked up Chad Johnson and Albert Haynesworthless too. Ive never once heard him compare Demps to Welker. He’s a great coach, but even he makes mistakes, and quite often. Want proof? Look at his drafts. Not as great as you probably think. We will have to wait and see, but you are giving Demps way more credit than he deserves. For the third time, show me him breaking tackles. There’s no Kentucky in the NFL, there’s not even Alabama.

  47. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Then again, you are probably one of those guys that believes a great college team can compete in the NFL.

  48. OAR Says:

    Same Belicheat that picked up Galloway, Haynesworth, Sammy Morris, and Ocho Stinko, just to name a few. He make mistakes too!

  49. OAR Says:

    You beat me too it! And, your right about his drafts. I wasnt even going to mention them, just his non-draft signings.

  50. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    And down goes MTM. Out for the count. I think MTM is finding out its very hard to win an argument when you are completely wrong and have no facts (just isolated exceptions) to back yourself up. Better luck next time.

  51. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Damn, that’s twice in one week I beat you to it. I’m getting pretty good at this. Now if only I could master your humor, I’d be in really good shape.

  52. OAR Says:

    Glad this isn’t the old west, cause I’d be pushin up daisies with your quick draw!