Not Buying Smokescreen Theories

August 27th, 2014


It helps that this past spring and summer, FOX brought back Jack Bauer and “24” for (at least) a season. It gave people who like espionage and conspiracies all sorts of fresh firewood for the noggin.

Since the Bucs brought in sleazy Richie Incognito for a five-hour dinner and chat Monday night, the Bucs reportedly threw in the towel on acquiring 49ers guard Alex Boone but did pull the trigger on a deal to bring in All-Pro Logan Mankins for a price far less than Boone’s ransom demand.

Joe has read where some believe bringing in Incognito was nothing more than a smokescreen to either strong-arm the 49ers or to bluff Bill Belicheat, or vice-versa. Joe thinks both conspiracicies are hogwash.

Simply put, the Bucs had zero leverage. The Bucs were the ones who were playing the part of Amerigo Bonasera, needing a favor (Joe could just hear Bill Belicheat asking, “Why did you go to the police?”). Both Trent Baalke and Belicheat would have laughed themselves out of their chairs if Bucs general manager Jason Licht tried to strong-arm them with the threat of Incognito. In both cases, they likely would have told Licht to enjoy blowing up his locker room and watching his quarterbacks get maimed.

If Licht had any leverage, it may have been using Mankins against the 49ers. Licht admitted yesterday he had been talking with Belicheat since late July about prying Mankins out of New England.

In the end, as several publications have reported out of San Francisco, the 49ers aren’t going to trade Boone unless someone is willing to part with at least a second round pick, and Boone didn’t want to be traded, either.

Regardless, the Bucs got their guard, a damned good one. And Bucs fans may be happier than Josh McCown with the result.

27 Responses to “Not Buying Smokescreen Theories”

  1. SteveK Says:

    Great work Joes!

    Who knows, we are possibly still looking at Incogbito.

    One more OG needed.

  2. Major Says:

    Yep, screw the media pansies, lets sign Incognito too!!!

  3. Eric Says:

    Probably right but I like the idea of Lovie wasting Incognito’s time if he brought him in with no intentions of signing him.

    That would be hilarious.

  4. Buc Neckid Says:

    Maybe not a “Smokescreen”
    But it is tough to negotiate when the other party think they are your ONLY option.
    Glad to see Mankins in,
    But why is everybody forgetting about Rishaw Johnson who the Bucs traded for LAST week and thinking that the BUCS are still short one guard and NEED Incognito?

  5. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    The one piece of leverage I could see is Tim Wright. Maybe Bellicheat really wanted him. Doubtful, but you never know. They love their tight ends in Foxboro, especially ones that don’t murder people.

  6. RastaMon Says:

    Joes buddy south of the SkyWay that writes for the “Mullet Wrapper”…is calling for Richie….he said “if you have two broken locks on your house you fix both of them”….Dell

  7. Theodore Says:

    “Licht admitted yesterday he had been talking with Belicheat since late July about prying Mankins out of New England.”

    As happy as I am to have two decent guards now, I can’t get over the fact the this position was bungled by L&L. Our two starting guards won’t play together till Week 1.

  8. Bob Says:

    It’s amazingly on how our local media all took a big sigh of relief after this trade but the national media are all wondering why. Although the o-line got better it could have been as good if not better without giving up anything by signing Incognito. Of course our tree hugging local guys thinks the we need a bunch of choir boys. I hope the Pats sign Incognito and he goes to the pro bowl to show how stupid our guys are and for making such spectacles of themselves. The only one and I mean the only one that didn’t raise a fuss was the Big Dog. I don’ t always agree with everything but on this one we are in the same page all the way. I just hope Lovie and a Licht didn’t buckle to the dumbarse’s in this town that claim to be writers and reporters. And heres to hoping we still sign Incognito to turn the O-line into a nasty, dominate, force to be reckoned with. For all the other tree hungers which includes you Joe should be embarrassed.

  9. Gus Says:

    Well I still think it could have been a smokescreen. Yes , Bill might have laugh when Licht threatened him, but then realize that he would losing of on an opportunity to finally have a suitable replacement for Hernandez. Honestly it’s the best of both worlds for both teams on paper

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    It could have served several purposes…..backup plan if the Mankins deal failed….smokescreen….actual interest in Richie (perhaps still).
    The Bucs took some real heat for even inviting him in so they must have been serious….I think if the brought him in now there would be much less heat and far more excitement that the line has been fixed.
    Having Mankins, EDS, Collins, Dotson on the Oline as teamates….I think Richie would have trouble finding someone to bully.

  11. Eric Says:

    Incognito single handily destroyed the dolphins season last year.

    No thanks.

  12. biff barker Says:

    The smokescreen theory is a bit of a reach but you do have to consider the rather curious timing. They had months to speak with Incognito and did nothing until the Mankins discussions were well underway.

    No matter now, the Bucs got their guy.

  13. BFFL Says:

    Joe, it was obviously a smoke screen and it worked. Give Licht some credit. I even called it. Just because you and big dog fell for it too doesn’t mean it’s not true.

  14. Patrickbucs Says:

    Eric Says:
    August 27th, 2014 at 8:13 am
    Incognito single handily destroyed the dolphins season last year.

    No thanks.

    I don’t think he single handily destroyed the Dolphins, they were doing quite well a couple of weeks before they played the Bucs and Martin made it public. He was asked to toughen up Martin which he attempted. Right or wrong the players on the Dolphins seemed to have his back more then Martin’s. I am not defending him but I think that is an inaccurate statement. I think the Bucs should sign him now (assuming he’s in shape and interviewed well) for a year veteran minimum with some escalators. I would not wait until after the 1st game to sign him to avoid guaranteeing his salary, he then may not be ready for weeks or may be signed by a different team. They may want to see how the KC guard does at that spot though as well first.

  15. BucNasty!!! Says:

    I could almost bet bellicheck wanted Wright badly can u not see all the butthurt new England fans and players he was signed at a decent pay I might add to protect Tom for atkeast 3 more year which means he has production left. How much production left is another question but I’m willing to vet if they didn’t need another receiving threat for Brady they’d have no problems riding mankins to 3 more pro bowls. The fact is Tom terrific hasn’t had a lot of great skill players since welker left and Wright n gronk can b all the offense he needs to get them back to form but if u want u gotta give. With that being said it’s been a long time since we’ve got a great return or the better return on a trade and I’m just ecstatic we didn’t get fleeced like normally when the rockstar made the calls. Lovie and licht for president!!!!!

  16. Eric Says:

    I doubt the Dolphins telling him to toughen the guy up included the lunatic approach incognito took. Or assaulting the woman on the golf course or abusing the equipment guy.

    As a grown man, able to make choices.

    Picture Leroy Selmon’s response if asked to do such things. Or McCoy. Or Brooks.

    Bush league crapola our young team does not need exposure to. Our new man is a consummate professional, leader, non scumbag.

  17. DallasBuc Says:

    ’24’ is garbage television. Have some taste!

  18. jo_mama Says:

    Why do you call Richie Incognito Sleazy?

    Since being in the NFL he has not been arrested.

    He did say a naughty word. He took his shirt off in a bar. He talked smack with his teammates and he redesigned the hood of his car.

    Who would you want your daughter to date Ray Rice or Richie Incognito?
    Who would you want to baby sit your dog Michael Vick or Richie Incognito?
    Who would you want to drive you home from a Bar Big Dog or Incognito?

    Richie Incognito’s only crime is being a bad ass.

  19. Cobraboy Says:

    I disagree with Joe. From folks I know in Boston Belichick (through Schiano) have coveted Wright for months, and approached the Bucs numerous times because Gronk still has physical problems-note the Pats have numerous Rutgers alum on their roster. I suspect the though of Incognito going to the Bucs would kill any trade. Hell, even Revis said one of the first things BB did with him was grill him about Wright months ago.

  20. Bobby Says:


    “Picture Leroy Selmon’s response if asked to do such things. Or McCoy. Or Brooks.

    Bush league crapola our young team does not need exposure to. Our new man is a consummate professional, leader, non scumbag.”

    I agree Eric. I want to win too but chemistry is huge as witnessed by the debacle with Josh Freeman last year. I think the Mankins trade was brilliant and brought in a quality individual both on and off the field.

  21. Patrickbucs Says:

    @ Eric

    Good points, if he really is a cancer then no point in signing him. I just remember his teammates backing him which to me said a lot. I don’t think there was much leadership on that team top down, now in the Bucs I do.

    Either way, maybe the KC guard we got will work out but I’m thrilled with the trade.

  22. VeeJay Says:

    I think they had option A,B and option C; with Boone & Mankins being A & B respectively. Bringing in Incognito was them being prepared just in case the other options fell through. Option A’s cost was obviosly too high. Option B was able to be consumated so there was no need for option C. I find hard to believe that the Bucs bringing in a player Incognito’s character would make the Patriots jump and say we need to do this deal since I don’t think the Patriots would’ve had a problem finding another trading partner for Mankins. Of course no one really knows what went down but the Bucs but is not possible that after meeting with Incognito, Lovie decided he wanted nothing to do with Incognito and told Licht to complete the deal for Mankins. When you hear that this deal was being worked on for a month.. I have to believe the Patriots had already told the Bucs what it would take to complete the deal. Let’s not forget the Bucs were the desperate team here and waited as long as they could hoping someone would emerge in camp. We all know how much they value draft picks.

  23. Cobraboy Says:

    The Pats were also “desperate” for a receiving TE, and didn’t want Wright to get away.

  24. VeeJay Says:

    This is probably true Cobra but still suggests that the Bucs were iffy with the Pats asking price. Did anyone notice that L & L were raving about Wright until a week ago and at the same time Stocker is praised.. A week later Wright is shipped to NE. I think once Lovie became comfortable with Stocker and Wright started to make mistakes on the field; the Bucs were willing to satisfy the Pats’ asking price.

  25. Kaptain Morgan Says:

    If the two teams were talking deal for a month, perhaps the one thing that was still left to decide upon was the draft pick for compensation. I’m sure NE wanted a higher round pick. Maybe…just maybe, drudging in Incognito made NE nervous that the deal might be off and they won’t get their tight end they coveted so the deal was consummated quickly after Incognito didn’t sign. Doubtful if we’ll find out for sure.

  26. VeeJay Says:

    Oh and did I leave out once they saw how bad teir current guards were. There is no better motivation then seeing QB #1 on his backside a couple times.

  27. Chuckamania Says:

    For those Rishaw Johnson fans, don’t forget that he has played in 3 games with one start. That is an unimpressive amount to think that he is the answer to one of our guard spots. The Bucs may not find anyone better after the rosters are cut to 53.

    There may not be a better option at guard than Incognito. He is a proven commodity talent-wise and yes, he has the reputation from last year. Before the Bucs made the trade for Mankins, I would not have been as in favor of bringing in Incognito.

    Now I am rethinking. Mankins has the leadership, temperament and the experience to keep him in his place. Being a fellow lineman that is important. Plus, there is strong leadership from Gerald ‘The Real’ McCoy and Vincent ‘Fort’ Jackson that will not allow for Incognito to disrupt the locker room.

    We haven’t had a winning record since 2012 or made the playoffs since 2007. Our last playoff victory was our Super Bowl victory in January 2003. Worst case scenario is we sign him, he causes trouble and then L&L cuts him. Best case scenario is he (paired with Mankins) makes our offense credible. I will trust Lovie Smith and Jason Licht to do their homework.