The Countdown: 20 Worst Buccaneers Personnel Moves Of The Past 10 Years — No. 4

July 26th, 2015

zuttahfaineIt’s the countdown feature you’ve all been waiting for. Not really, but on the heels of last year’s award-winning “20 Worst Buccaneers Of The Past 10 years” feature, Joe had to deliver.

A list like this is highly subjective and toxic. Fits of rage were common during production meetings at world headquarters. Scared interns soiled their pants. Full beer bottles were smashed, and a treasured Rachel Watson poster was accidently destroyed. But order was restored.

Current and former general managers and head coaches might not like what’s coming, but it had to be done. This is what happens when your team is 30-70 in its last 100 games.

No. 4 — Trading Jeremy Zuttah

In the spring of 2015, the Buccaneers traded a solid, versatile, average-paid and durable (76 starts) 27-year-old offensive lineman named Jeremy Zuttah — for a fifth-round draft pick.

Joe’s head is still shaking.

It was an unthinkable move at the time, and the ripple effect is still being felt.

If the concept of trading Zuttah for a throwaway draft pick wasn’t a big enough red flag, then super Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome being eager to make the deal should have been a clear sign of danger.

Zuttah was a team-first, good-guy Buccaneer, and one of the smartest guys on the team. He graduated early from Rutgers with an economics degree, and Joe remembers Davin Joseph and Chucky raving about how rookie Zuttah mastered Chucky’s giant playbook at multiple positions before that 2008 season started.

Was anyone surprised that Zuttah was at the center of the Ravens’ offensive line revival last year? He was in the middle of the last two excellent Bucs running games, in 2010 and 2012.

Imagine if Zuttah was still on this Buccaneers team. Heck, he could have held down right guard last year and this year, for example, like he did in ’08 when Joseph was injured. His presence likely would have sent the Bucs in a different direction in Round 2 of the draft (no Ali Marpet) and provided needed depth through his versatility. Or, for example, the Bucs would have a better, smarter center for their rookie QB.

Yeah, all roads led to 2-14 and winning the Chase for Jameis. Hooray! But this mistake never had to happen.

When you have a good, homegrown football player, you keep him.

No. 5 — Cutting Darrelle Revis

No. 6 — Anthony Collins

No. 7 — Mark Barron

No. 8 — Da’Quan Bowers (2011 and 2013)

No. 9 — Re-Signing Blocking Icon Michael Clayton

No. 10 — Eric Wright

No. 11 — Michael “Ghost” Johnson

No. 12 Sabby The Goat

No. 13 — Free Agent Inactivity After 10-6, 2010 Season

No. 14 — Scaredy Cat Dexter Jackson

No. 15 — Firing Jon Gruden

No. 16 — Choosing — And Drafting For — The Jim Bates Defense

No. 17 — Drafting Cadillac Williams Over DeMarcus Ware

No. 18 — Garrett Gilkey: Virgin Center

No. 19 — Cutting Chris Jones

No. 20 — Failing on Brett Favre trade

26 Responses to “The Countdown: 20 Worst Buccaneers Personnel Moves Of The Past 10 Years — No. 4”

  1. Seminole bill Says:

    How about letting Penn go?? Could that be next on the bad moves list?

  2. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    C. J. Wilson is retiring because of the fireworks thing…

  3. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I know, it’s a couple days old about CJ. But the irony here is he is the first injury this off season, and it’s likely career ending. He’s not a part of this year’s free agents.

    The injury bug starts early this year. That little critter is going to be very active.

  4. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    @Seminole bill

    I get letting Penn go. He was getting up there in age and there was no way they would have gotten production that equaled pay. It was a solid business decision.

    Their choice of replacement was the issue.

    To me, letting Zuttah go was the biggest offensive line mistake. Good centers are extremely hard to find…and he was very good for us.

    It’s easier (not easy, but easier) to replace every other spot on the line, but Center, especially historically for the Bucs, has been next to impossible.

  5. DraftJameis Says:

    The silver lining with all of these blunders is drafting Jameis Winston. If having Penn, Zuttah, Revis, even led to ONE extra victory last season, it would not have been worth it. Luckily for us fans, the utter FO incompetence of the last few years might lead to a successful decade. And if that’s the case, ’09-’14 was well worth it.

  6. Buccinfan Says:

    We wouldn’t have a nice rookie qb if we kept zuttah he would’ve helped solidify our o-line which probably would equate to better run game pass game and more wins. Bucks tanked before the season even started! Conspiracy thought

  7. Buc1987 Says:

    Buccinfan….(rolling my eyes) We already went over this yesterday in here. lol

  8. Maze Says:

    Zuttah at 4? Yeah right

  9. BlogTalkFootball Says:

    I would have to agree with the Joe’s.

  10. The Buc Realist Says:

    In that Steelers and Ravens playoff game ( the only game I saw zuttah play ) Zuttah was manhandled when he was left alone. Only when the Guard would assist was Zuttah not moving backwards!!!

    Was trading him a downgrade at center? yes
    But it is in no way near the 4th worst personal move by the Bucs!!!

    ( I knew this list would be created to protect the “rockstar”!!! and it makes me sad that I am right!!!!)

  11. Buccfan37 Says:

    Did anybody in the Bucs upper hierarchy ever give an explanation as to why Zuttah was traded away? I must have missed it.

  12. Pickgrin Says:

    L&L made a # of personel mistakes last year. I understood the reasoning for all of them. Except this one. Trading Zuttah was a bad decision. Not because he was a great or even a good player – but because the talent level on OLine was so poor (Thanks Dom!!) and we needed his stability and versatility up front.

    All the “bad decisions” led to Jameis though – so its useless to rehash. Once this series is done, its time to look forward to the future with hope and positive expectation. Hopefully Kenny Bell will turn into a good solid receiver and that 5th round pick we got for Zuttah will have been well utilized.

  13. Howard Cosell Says:


    He wasn’t worth the money (allegedly).

  14. Howard Cosell Says:


  15. drdneast Says:

    Od all the horrible moves the Bucs have made over the last ten years you put this at No. 4?
    Your prejudice is showing Joe.
    Zuttah is an average blocker in a zone blocking scheme which the Bucs don’t use but the Ravens do.
    Quit trying to make HOF players out of guys who were barely average here.
    The guy plays on a line that has 2 All pros and you make it sound like he single handedly carried the unit.
    It would be nice if some of you people who belch out your irrational emotional outburst were already aware of these facts.
    But crazies like to be told things that just reenforce their irrational beliefs. Getting actual facts is to bothersome and also makes them feel stupid.

  16. WS99 Says:

    Revis is still worse than this, I’m confident the current regime came in with a clear goal which was to get rid of all schiano loyalist.

    Hey on the bright side we now have Chris conte on the team. YEY

  17. SteveK Says:

    ( I knew this list would be created to protect the “rockstar”!!! and it makes me sad that I am right!!!!)


    Dominik better somewhere at the top. It really is sad to see Dom get a pass.

  18. tdtb2015 Says:

    If Jameis ends up being a franchise QB, then that trade is o.k. with me.

    Remember when trading for Gruden we lost tons of picks. But as fans we got to experience winning a Super Bowl baby! Many teams have yet to accomplish that. Most of those teams are older than the Bucs.

    Toe to leather Baby!

  19. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    tdtb the bucs are in terrible shape w jameis maybe 3-4 years but 5-11 in 2015 sucks

  20. mac Says:

    This was a total head scratcher… We should have kept Zuttah, Penn and Larson…

    But then again we may not have Winston if we did… We may have gone 3-13 instead of 2-14…

  21. Buc1987 Says:

    Realist is sad…

  22. Jbeachbuc Says:

    Whatever, Mr. Know it all. It was a horrible move . Easily worthy of this lists top 5.

  23. Mike10 Says:

    Did we ever catch Lovie’s follow-up as to why he made that move?… and then like a “sorry Bucs fans”

  24. Buccinfan Says:

    My bad I guess I was late to the party. But all I know is we can’t be any worse than last year boys. So put your shades on the future is poking bright

  25. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    This list keeps getting better and better, as we get closer to number 1.
    Mark Dominik has got to be coming up soon on this list, and hopefully up at number one.
    Yes he is a nice guy, yes, he was loyal to Tampa Bay, but I can think of no one person who hurt the Bucs more then the “Rockstar”.

  26. Lord Cornelius Says:

    To me this was the worst of all the L&L moves. I could understand the logic with every move except for this one.