Will Licht Go Back To What Worked?

January 21st, 2015
Seattle guard James Carpenter

Seattle guard James Carpenter

Bucs general manager Jason Licht didn’t hide from his rough 2014 dive into free agency. But Licht also was very clear on who he thought was his big score of the year.

That has Joe wondering whether the Bucs’ brass will head back to where they were most successful in free agency.

Licht and Bucs overlord of football operations Lovie Smith snatched defensive tackle Clinton McDonald from the Super Bowl champion Seahawks. The price was fair, four years, $12 million. He was a very solid Tampa Bay nose tackle and finished with 34 solo tackles, five sacks and one interceptions in 13 starts.

“We’re going to find more Clinton McDonalds,” Licht said three weeks ago. “And we’re happy with a lot of these guys, but Clinton McDonald kind of stands out to me right now as a guy that is very passionate, wants to play football, wants to help the team win, comes from a winning environment, and, you know, he’s the type of guy that we want to be a Buc. So those are the kind of guys that we want to look for moving forward.”

So where better to find another McDonald than in the Seahawks’ trenches?

Seattle can’t pay everyone, and young guard James Carpenter will be a free agent soon, if salary-cap-squeezed Seattle can’t re-sign him. Carpenter, 25, starts at left guard, and he’ll command less than what last-legs Logan Mankins will earn.

The 2011 first-round pick has an interesting and impressive history since coming out of Alabama. Here’s a summary from AL.com.

After selecting Carpenter in the first round of the 2011 draft, Seattle installed him as its right offensive tackle for his rookie season. Nine games into 2011, he suffered a season-ending knee injury. The injury kept him out until the fourth game of the 2012 season, when he returned as a guard. Carpenter started seven games, then lost the rest of his second season to a concussion and another knee injury. Last season, he shared time at left guard with Paul McQuistan, starting 10 games. Carpenter started in the NFC championship game and Super Bowl.

This season, Carpenter had played full-time in the Seahawks’ offensive line. In the first five games of the season, he was on the field for all 304 snaps by the Seattle offense.

That’s right. Carpenter is a fixture on the Seahawks’ offensive line. He started 13 games this season and the team struggled without him. And he started in last year’s Super Bowl.

Joe suspects Carpenter is better than every Buccaneers offensive linemen.

Joe would love to see Licht and Lovie deeply study and consider Carpenter. Just like Joe wants to see the Bucs bring Clint Boling to Tampa on Team Glazer’s jet to talk. The Bucs’ O-line was so dreadful that every potential fix should be on the table.

33 Responses to “Will Licht Go Back To What Worked?”

  1. bucrightoff Says:

    Talk about penthouse to the outhouse. And that should be the concern, is he cashing in and does he really want to be here? This is why developing your own guys trumps free agency in every way.

  2. J Moné Says:

    I ain’t worried bout nothin licht knows what’s up

  3. Robert 9 Says:

    check those knees! teams don’t let 25 year old 1st round picks walk very often.

    looks good though!

  4. 87ForJameisNoMariota Says:

    “The Bucs’ O-line was so dreadful that every potential fix should be on the table.”

    Dreadful is an understatement.

  5. JJ Says:

    Joe means that every potential fix except for Richie should be on the table.

  6. DallasBuc Says:

    Of all the moves made last year the only one lapdog can hang his hat on is the largely unremarkable Clinton McDonald? My skepticism this season is going to be at a screaming pitch after the clown show this mealy-mouthed dope brought to town last year. Knives are out now.

  7. Jack Says:

    Good thinking, Joe.

  8. pick6 Says:

    last year proved that alot of these guys who stood out on winning teams were not so much superior lplayers as they were maybe the product of better teammates and better coaching. that’s what makes free agency so tough

  9. Jonny 2.3 Says:

    @Joe: Alabama fan here. James Carpenter is not a good enough player to go after in the free agency. Seattle has done well despite him, not because of him. He has been a borderline bust for them and has always been a weak link on that O-line despite changing multiple positions. PFF has graded him poorly as well. The most you can say about him is an upgrade to Omameh, but even that is arguable since we did not hear a whole lot about Omameh in the 2nd half of last season which isn’t a bad thing. I’d rather see if Collins is salvageable before I look at the direction of Carpenter. But I’d rather go in a different direction altogether.

  10. Architek Says:

    Competent is the word – can they become competent in one off-season.

    Good OLs are not built overnight it takes years and continuity. Let’s get the base right first, with people that want to be here and can play.

  11. 87ForJameisNoMariota Says:


  12. Milenko Says:

    I’m thankful

  13. tmaxcon Says:

    Standards need to be raised and this guy doesn’t fo it for me
    . Too many injury concerns for me. You’re no good on bench

  14. Old Bill Says:

    How’s about the bucs go after my University of Idaho brother Mike Iupati

  15. ruggyup Says:

    See R. Ryans comments about EJ Manuel and the whole Bills deal:

    But Ryan stressed the importance of offensive coordinator Greg Roman and quarterbacks coach David Lee, as much as any of the individual players they might be working with.

    “But it starts with a system,” Ryan said. “You’ve got to have a system that’s flexible and plays to the strength of, not just your quarterback, but all your players. And then make sure you’ve got the right guys that are teaching. I’m certainly not going to teach the position.

    My confidence shrinks in whether our Bucs can shoulder up and figure out such mind numbing exercises routinely understood in Pop Warner.

  16. Barry Says:

    Licht just needs to understand he’s Smith’s boss.

  17. Buc-O's 82 Says:

    What type of season ending knee injury? ACL ?

  18. gotbbucs Says:

    The draft needs to go QB, O-Line, O-line. We have got to start drafting some of our better players and using free agency on players with something to prove rather than paying for past performance.

    I want to see some of these guys do something good on the field for us before they get big money.
    Carpenter is damaged goods, think Davin Joseph and his knees. Im done with these Alabama players on top of that too.

  19. Scott Says:

    Licht is not Lovie Smiths boss it is actually the other way around

  20. Robert 9 Says:

    all these guys who play for NFL teams are professional football players.

    you can not tell me that there are not guys out there with all the skills who just need to be taught properly.

    problem is our coaching turnover and apparently they can not teach.

    so sick of hearing we don’t have talent when our guys get shipped off to become valued contributors to other teams with good coaching.

  21. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    “Barry Says:
    January 21st, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    Licht just needs to understand he’s Smith’s boss.”

    And that’s the problem. It’s my understanding that Lovie has final say on personnel. So, it’s a little hard to critique Licht when we don’t know what say that he actually has on said moves.

    That’s why I shake my head when I see people bashing Licht or calling him “lapdog”. If that’s the hierarchy that the Glazers defined, then, he’s just doing his job.

    Now, why would the Glazers give Lovie, of all people, final say on personnel? No clue….

  22. Phil Says:

    Did anyone see on PFT that Brad Johnson said he paid someone $7500.00 to doctor the footballs for the Super Bowl the Bucs won?

  23. theodore Says:

    Brad Johnson scuffed footballs and now the Lombardi Trophy is being returned and Brooks and Sapp are getting kicked out the HOF.

  24. unbelievable Says:

    Seems like he is injury prone. I would pass unless you’re signing him for depth.

  25. DallasBuc Says:

    L&W Dunn- “That’s why I shake my head when I see people bashing Licht or calling him “lapdog”. If that’s the hierarchy that the Glazers defined, then, he’s just doing his job.”

    That is exactly why I came up with “lapdog” because he has no traditional GM authority in making personnel decisions. He is Lovie’s lapdog GM that runs his mouth too much for a guy that is part of the greatest failure of the 2014 season. What diminutive GM duties this guy retains he clearly isn’t getting the job done. Spare me the excuses. The FA class was one of the worst in NFL history. Beats Dominik’s first year that included Michael Clayton and Derek Ward!

  26. Mike10 Says:

    Unfortunately life isn’t a rap song J mone

  27. BirdDoggers Says:

    Too many free agents have signed in Tampa and loafed after taking the money. The team needs to draft and develop their own players. Creating a grass roots winning culture will take the team much farther than paying big contracts to players for their past performances with other teams. It’s fine to supplement the roster with a few key free agents but it’s not the way the core of the roster should be built.

  28. ddneast Says:

    DallasBuc offers yet another negative comment. You have to wonder about these posers who always post something negative even when you are talking about a very positive players who put up respectable numbers. Some fan.
    Where is your real favorite team, DallasBuc.

  29. Buctebow Says:

    A scuffed ball helped Gannon’s grip as well as Johnson’s, so no foul, plus this is not new information, it is a non-issue to me.

  30. Newbucsfan!!! Says:

    Forget offense, take as many Seattle defensive players as possible!

  31. DallasBuc Says:

    ddneast- glad to see you are on positivity police patrol. Don’t bother to argue the points made just toss out 8-year old names like poser to drive your point home!
    My favorite team is in Tampa and they suck my asshole with 14 losses on the season. The won 2 games. That positive enough for you?

  32. Pickgrin Says:

    Pass. Forget about signing over-priced free agents who probably won’t amount to much anyway. After QB pick at #1, draft Oline early and often. I would like to see 3 OL picks come from somewhere among the 2,3,4,5 and 5 picks.

    + it sounds like this dude can’t stay healthy or lock down a position. Maybe if he’s cheap for competition – but otherwise – No Thanks.

  33. JoeBucsFan.com » Blog Archive » Free Agency Dinner Bell Rings In 36 Days - Tampa Bay Bucs Blog, Bucccaneers News Says:

    […] angles on free agency. Joe’s already taken a brief look at Bengals guards Clint Boling and James Carpenter, among […]