Don’t Buy The Light-Spending Nonsense

March 4th, 2013

Over the weekend, Joe was somewhat appalled to see this headline from the Tampa Bay Times, “Unlikely Bucs Spending Spree In Free Agency.” Joe’s not buying it.

First, if the Bucs don’t score two starting-caliber cornerbacks in free agency, then rockstar general manager Mark Dominik essentially will be telling the world that he’s planning to draft a cornerback and count on him to start in 2013. Joe sees that as an extremely risky move in this draft, and very risky for any team trying to win the NFC South.

Can the Bucs get a corner at a good value in this draft? Absolutely. But they shouldn’t rely on that corner out of the gate. Joe would be surprised if Greg Schiano wants to trust a rookie before he even sees him in spring practice.

But what if the Bucs do only nab one cornerback in free agency? If that’s the case, then surely that lone cornerback signing is going to be a very highly paid, best-in-class kind of guy. And he will cost a fortune and be signed on opening day of free agency, in eight days. How could the Bucs not pay for the best cornerback available if they’re going to put a rookie on the other side of the field?

Also, the Bucs are working on trying to re-sign Michael Bennett. If he signs, he will be one of the highest paid guys of the free-agency season. If not, the Bucs will have to replace him with a proven pass rusher (motivated, versatile John Abraham would be an intriguing stop-gap), and that guy will cost big money, too.

So out of the gate, that puts the Bucs at scoring at least two big-money free agents. Therefore, Joe has no idea why the Tampa Bay Times wants us all to believe Dominik won’t be throwing around bags of Team Glazer’s cash next week.

Throw in the fact that the Bucs are $30 million or so under the salary cap, plus another $10 million or so under when Eric Wright and Quincy Black are cut, and the fact that teams have to spend a high percentage of their available money, and it’s a no-brainer that the Bucs will be strong spenders in free agency.

As Joe’s written previously, the notion of preparing for future contracts of Josh Freeman and Gerald McCoy, doesn’t add up.

The great mystery surrounding the 2013 Bucs is how Schiano and Dominik evaluated the team since January. If they feel they Bucs are ready to contend with their roster, which now features plenty of veterans, then there’s no reason not to go all-in on free agency. The new culture was established last season. The offense is built to win now. There’s no reason to wait.

34 Responses to “Don’t Buy The Light-Spending Nonsense”

  1. Buc Fan #238 Says:

    Eric Wright will not be cut. We don’t have any other CBs to replace him.

    Now, if the Bucs sign 2 starting CBs, then maybe.

    But even then, I’d still keep Wright.

    Other than that, Joe, I agree, we need to be active in free agency… and I can’t wait!

  2. DougMartin22 Says:

    Re-sign Bennett, Williams and Barber. Sign Marti Bennett, Smith and/or Lewis.

  3. @MikeInTampa2 Says:

    TE’s available (Not Franchise Tagged) Delanie Walker, Jared Cook, Martellus Bennett……we NEED to get 1 of these guys

  4. Keith Says:

    1) Don’t believe the Times
    2) If they don’t cut Wright or seriously renegotiate his deal, they’re idiots.
    3) Glad you mentioned the win now offense. Three-year plans don’t exist anymore in the NFL. They’ve got strong skill players. Put some defense on the field and go get in the playoffs. It’s not brain surgery.

  5. SilenceTheCritics Says:

    Unless I am mistaken the bucs have to spend to the cap, which means 30 million or more… thats not light spending.

  6. Vic66 Says:

    @Domonic> Keep repeating, “top corner-top corner”!

  7. FlBoy84 Says:

    If Wright is cut (and I don’t think that’s a certainty at this point), have to believe they’ll wait until after signing 1/2 FA CB’s first. Doing so prior to that would only lessen the teams leverage in negotiations with potential replacements. If Schiano & Co. saw enough in Wright in the work he put on film (which wasn’t much) and he has said enough of the right things behind the scenes, he may still be on the roster this season (though if he is, hopefully it’s at a much reduced rate). It’s rare for a rookie CB to come in and be an immediate starter his first year. Any starting tandem out of Cox, Grimes, Smith, Jammer, Robinson, Brown, Carter, Houston or McKelvin, with either a new rooking or Gaitor, Biggers or Johnson as the nickel would be a massive upgrade over what the team put out there last season.

  8. FlBoy84 Says:

    As far as the Times article, having an article stating the cap would be flat at $121 million for 2013 & 2014 two days after it was reported that the 2013 cap alone would likely be at $123 million shoes what kind of research and thought goes into some of this stuff.

  9. FlBoy84 Says:


  10. The 300's Says:

    A few items of note here:

    1. The CBA requires each team to spend 89% of it’s salary cap. That means the Bucs can spend a minimum of $109.5M or about $16.5M additional from Joe’s estimated $30M available.

    2. Consider the release of Wright and Black what it will cost to sign our draft picks so we are sill at $16.5M minimum to spend.

    3. Bucs are looking at extending Mike Williams contract, which is currently very cap friendly rookie contract.

    4. Bucs have said all along they will sign their core players, which Michael Bennett is one of. So take another $9M to sign a player you already have…. no splash moves. So now we are down to $7.5M minimum.

    5. What was Eric Wright’s cap hit last year…….. about $7.5M for a mediocre cornerback that wasn’t overpaid too much for a salary bloated position.

    Just my view from the cheap seats.

  11. Andrew 1 Says:

    I have know idea where the times are getting there info because all signs lead to us spending in free agency. It probably wont be as big or lucrative as the last free agency but im sure we will be getting some quality players once the dinner bell rings. It will be interesting to see what route we take in free agency.

  12. Andrew 1 Says:

    Maybe the Times knows something we dont…

  13. Capt. Tim Says:

    The times!! Lol

  14. Andrew 1 Says:

    glad I could be of some amusement. you can scoff but you never know.

  15. FlBoy84 Says:

    +1… Capt Tim

    While I wouldn’t like to see the team go overboard with a Gruden and Allen Part Deux, if Dominik was able to sign a couple guys out of Abraham/Freeney at DE, Smith/Barnett at OLB, Grimes/Brown/Jammer at CB or Reed/Woodson at S at reasonable deals, it could really help the development of the younger guys at those positions while still providing solid play at those positions. Much like Jackson has doe for Williams at WR.

  16. Macabee Says:

    I don’t know how much they will spend in FA, but they’ve got the cash and it keeps going up. A little quick math.

    They were sitting at 30.1mil. The cap came in at 123mil instead of 121mil, so right away cap space goes to 32.1mil.If they cut Quincy Black as expected at 5.5mil, then cap space goes to 37.6mil. If they pay an injury settlement, it does not come out of cap money. If they cut Eric Wright at 7.75mil, then cap space goes to 45.37mil. If they keep Wright, you pick a fair number and add that back to 37.6mil and it won’t be 7.75mil.

    What if they cut Blount, Benn, and/or Lewis? You get the picture. We’re LOADED! Dominik just has to buy wisely! Now if they’re hoarding cash expecting to sign Freeman to a Flacco-like contract after we win the Super bowl this year, then that’s another story! lol

  17. 4everBucsFan Says:

    They have to spend, it just depends on what and how they spend it. Every team in the league has to spend money this year so its going to very hard to lure FA’s to Tampa without competition for the same FA. The question is does Dominik have the testicles to go head to head with the bully GMs for the better FA’s or is he going to play a meek behind the shadows type GM and pick-over the scraps.

  18. Macabee Says:

    Some of you are under the impression that the Bucs must spend because of the salary cap floor required by the CBA in 2013.It is only one factor, but not the primary factor because it is not a hard floor. It is instead a four year average of minimum spending, not required to be spent in any one year.

    The real impetus behind spending in FA is the need to be competitive quickly because jobs may be on the line. A coach or GM may not be around to see draft picks make a real difference in the NFL. It would be astounding if we had another draft and got 3 starters. FA makes sense when it’s done right!

  19. Eric Says:

    Win now?

    My wouldn’t that be a refreshing change. But let’s not rush things, we’re only in the fifth year of the rebuild.

  20. 4everBucsFan Says:

    @ Macabee

    Where in the letter of the law and framework of the new salary cap guidelines, you are exactly right, but, I still guarantee you will see every team close to or above 89% of the cap this year.

  21. Andrew 2 Says:

    Free Agent Aditions(Notable Only)

    Sean Smith – Buccaneers are looking to play smash mouth football. Sean Smith is an ideal corner for the Schiano & Sheridan defensive scheme we saw last year. 6’3 218 lbs, he will definitely *** some size and skill to the worst secondary in the NFL last year. Projected Contract 5 years 43 million dollars

    Dashon Goldson – Tampa double dips into the free agent DB market. This time going after a member of the NFC champion 49er defense, one of the best in the NFL the last couple of years. Goldson, 6’2 200 lbs, is another big, strong, hard-hitting defensive back who will really help to improve our secondary. One of the most ideal candidates to pair with Mark Barron. He should allow Mark Barron to play the true SS role he was so great at in college. He should also be able to be a role model for Barron and help his development. Projected Contract 4 years 30 million dollars

    Martellus Bennett – Martellus and Michael are a package deal. It just so happens this is a great deal for the Buccaneers. Martellus is a young strong physical tight end who is a great blocker and above average at catching the ball as well. He should help Greg run the ball with The Dougernaut and be a reliable target for Josh over the middle and up the seam. Projected Contract 5 years 30 million dollars

    2013 NFL Draft
    Buccaneers recieve:
    #31 Overall(1st Round)
    #34 Overall(2nd Round)

    49ers recieve:
    #13 Overall(1st Round)

    1. Johnthan Banks CB Mississippi State – Best CB available at the end of Round 1, dropped due to concerns over combine number. Buccaneers war room very happy that he is still available when they pick. Comes in and starts across from Smith on Day 1.

    2. Arthur Brown LB Kansas State – Played inside at Kansas State, has the speed to play outside at the level, has the instincts and sheer athleticism to play inside. The Bucs move Mason Foster outside, where he played in college, and put Arthur Brown in the middle to pair with Lavonte David on all 3 downs.

    2. John Jenkins DT Georgia – The big man from Georgia 6’4 346 lbs falls right into the Bucs lap. Roy Miller caught an attitude, John Jenkins is a huge run stuffer who will leave Bucs fans asking, Roy who? He should have no problem being only used on 1st and 2nd down, this will maximize his ability.

    3. Quinton Patton WR LA Tech – One of the most underrated WRs in this entire draft. He will be a matchup nightmar with Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams on the outside and Martellus Bennett at the TE position. Has the ability to play outside if either starting WR goes down and is more than capable of playing the slot.

    4. Will Davis CB Utah State – Very good 4th round corner who should come in and compete with Leonard Johnson for the nickel corner job. I would imagine he bests Leonard Johnson but either way it adds depth at the corner position that is much needed.

    4. Marcus Lattimore RB South Carolina – There are concerns about his long term health, they are valid. Both knees being blown up is a bad thing for a RB, the Bucs medical staff knows knees very well tho. He will not be asked to be the primary every down back, rather part of a rotation with Doug Martin. Win-Win-Win for Doug, Marcus and the Bucs. Should be one of the best backup RBs in the NFL when healthy, should be ready to go for training camp.

    5. Shamarko Thomas SS Syracuse – Backup SS He is a great choice to backup Barron and replace Cody Grimm. He is a max effort guy who I expect to see in on all areas of Special Teams. Zero character concerns, has really excelled through the draft process. Very similar to Mark Barron in terms of play style, just wasnt born with Marks size. Bucs fans can rest easy at night knowing if Barron misses any time Shamarko Thomas will be ready to fill in for him.

    6. Quanterus Smith DE Western Kentucky – 2nd draft pick who tore an ACL this past season. Had 12.5 sacks in his senior season, including 3 against Alabama. Guy with a lot of upside and should come in and compete with T’eo Nesheim for his spot as the #4 DE. Smith will add depth to the D-Line.

    7. Reid Fragel OT Ohio State – Big time OT from a big time school in a big time conference. He has his flaws which is why he is here in the 7th round. He has a lot of things that you look for in a good OT, he just isnt the complete package at this point in his development. Bostad should be able to work with this kid and maximize his potential. Could push Dotson in Year 1, doubtful but possible. Could develop nicely down the road.

    ^^^This is my take…and I think we would be impoosible to stop

  22. 1976Buc Says:

    Trade Blount plus a 4th round pick to Philly for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

  23. Macabee Says:


    I support your desire to trade Blount, but you can’t trade for UFAs. But, nice try!

  24. Macabee Says:


    Well done! There is lots here that I could disagree with but that’s not the intent of my comment. There was a lot of research and thought that went into your post and as a Buc fan, I’m impressed.

    One thought in jest is just being able to get it pass the spam filter is an accomplishment all by itself.

    Again, great effort and I hope some of your ideas come to fruition!

  25. 1976Buc Says:

    Well damn!!! I was certain he had another year on his contract, my bad. Been working to much lol. Let’s keep each other on track.

  26. BOb Says:

    he was talking about cromartie. not blount! #cofeebreak

  27. BigMacAttack Says:

    At least we get some action next week. The Times was likely given some bad info to keep the spin going. Dom never tips his hand. The Times’ report is all BS, as usual. I never go to their site for anything. It is a complete waste of time.

  28. jarrett Says:

    Andrew2 that was alot of work,good job i think goldson is more of a strong safety but good research and post

  29. SirustheVirus Says:

    Bucs should let Wright go to pick up a Sean Smith or Keenan Lewis. With what Wright was owed and what he missed out on we should be able to get one of these guys. Then pick up a risk reward guy in Derek Cox(which his 12 games were better than all 16 games our CBs played). John Abraham would be nice on a 1 year deal outside of that not to interested in any other free agents.Jarvis Jones/Sheldon Richardson/D.J.Fluker one of them should be here at 13 take your pick, but no CB.

  30. Big Marlon B Says:

    I totally agree with Macabee….impressive post Andrew 2. Just like Mac said, there are a couple of things I see a bit differently, but the fact that you actually put that much thought and logical reasoning into everything is a breath of fresh air not often seen in the comment section. There are very few posts I look forward to reading, Macabee and teacherman being in that group…so I thank you for re-affirming my faith that there are actually intelligent Bucs fans out there lol.

  31. Alan Bucs Says:

    I’m not quite sure why we haven’t heard any interest from the Bucs on Ahmad Bradshaw? Doug Martin/Ahmad Bradshaw sounds good to me. I think he is worth a look even with the injuries. Any thoughts?

  32. Big Marlon B Says:

    Alan, I thought the same thing especially considering the Sullivan connection and Bradshaw’s 3rd down capabilities. I just think there are a lot of RB needy teams that could make him a bigger priority and throw more $ at him despite the injury concerns.

  33. Andrew 2 Says:

    Ahmad Bradsah is fragile, hasnt shown at all he can stay healthy and has fumbling issues and has been benched more than once because of them. Realy doesn’t seem like a Schiano kind of guy.

    Draft: Lattimore, Graham, Stacy, Davis

    FA: Stephens-Howling, Ronnie Brown, Torrain

    I think guys like this could be in play for our backup role. They also could sign Blout for cheap and make him be a safety net for one more year.

  34. FunkYxMunkeY Says:

    I like the idea of drafting Lattimore around the 4th round. He is way ahead of schedule with his knee injury and would be a great 3rd down back to compliment Martin.