Beware II!

February 19th, 2016

A spreadsheeter is terrified of throwing cash at DE Olivier Vernon.

You know the Bucs need an edge rusher. Joe knows the Bucs need an edge rusher. The Bucs know they need an edge rusher.

Shoot, Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht knows the Bucs need an edge rush so badly, he even invoked potential free agent Olivier Vernon’s name to make a point.

However, Bucs fans, as well as Licht, might want to tap the brakes, claims one of the lead imaginary cake bakers over at PFF, that being Sam Monson.

Typing a piece for BSPN, Monson believes Vernon is a scary target to toss Team Glazer loot in his face.

Vernon was dominant for much of the season, and legitimately elite, but when compared to his career baseline, it represents an alarming outlier in a contract season. He recorded 81 total pressures this season, 33 more than he had in any other year of his career. In addition, a breakdown of his season shows the bulk of his dominance coming in a 10-game stretch to finish the year. He showed the ability to be one of the best edge defenders in football, but teams face the prospect of handing him a contract commensurate with that ability when it represents just 10 of the 46 games he has started over his career.

So, if you can read between the lines, perhaps Monson believes this Vernon is Ghost Johnson II? In other words, he was playing for a contract?

Still, after being used by two limp Johnsons in successive years (Ghost and Sackless), surely the Bucs can’t strike out on a third defensive end in as many years via free agency, could they?

28 Responses to “Beware II!”

  1. canadian bucsfan Says:

    What about Tamba Hali? He is a free agent and KC prob won’t keep him. I think he would look great in Pewter

  2. @hands2theface Says:

    Line coach Hayes is going to be this season’s Koetter. He will be the difference between a successful DE and line.

  3. destro44 Says:


    I think you are right on. Hayes ability to get production from done of the players on our roster will be more important than any signing or draft pick. Perhaps a change in scheme and actually coaching up talent will make a difference

  4. godzilla13 Says:

    “If” is the key word. If Oliver Vernon is not franchised, he is the best DE to hit the market since the woman beater was picked up by the Cowboys. He’s only 25 years old and would be a cornerstone of our defense for the future. Vernon’s 30 quarterback hits in 2015 were more than our entire starting defensive line. It would also allow us more freedom in the draft so we don’t have to draft two DE. Don’t forget that during that 10-game stretch at the end of last year, he had more QB pressures than Aaron Donald over the same period. If you think he is another contract year wonder, just look at his stats. The bottom line is that he is going to produce between 6.5 and 9.5 sacks a year. I still like Jason Pierre-Paul way better. Vernon is the second best option at DE and Jason Licht needs to go all in on the player who hits the market.

    2012 MIA 16 32 25 7 3.5 2 O 2 2
    2013 MIA 16 57 46 11 11.5 0 4 8 0
    2014 MIA 16 46 31 15 6.5 2 5 10 1
    2015 MIA 16 61 41 20 7.5 0 11 33 0

  5. Jab83 Says:

    Surely they could strike out!!! You for get what city your in??? Striking out is what we do……. Wait this is not a Rays blog…

    I have an idea… Let’s do what we did to the OL last year…. Draft two outside the box DE consecutivly and land us a couple guys off the street still hungry to play some ball… Use FA to upgrade WR and DB… Maybe make an early season trade for one BUT………….

    We don’t need no stinking FA DE!!!!

    KEEP THAT OFFENSE HUMMING….. Keep adding the young talent to fill the obvious BIG needs and holes…. Use FA to add depth and raise the existing talent level….

    Fun time LS boys and girls…. Sure a good vibe from everyone these days about the direction of the Bucs!!!! I’m inclined to say no matter what they do it is gonna be good and it will work out nicely…. Let’s just hope that equals WINS!!!!

  6. WelshBuc Says:

    Put it this way… It would be better to take another expensive risk on another DE and he be a bust (twice under Lovie) than do a Schiano and just let a talented one walk away for nothing who goes on to win a Super Bowl!

    Mike Smith/Hayes gives me confidence anyway, but just with QBs in the draft, you keep swinging for one until you get one. We have our QB, now it’s time to get our DE or three.

    Licht, over to you…

  7. biff barker Says:

    The dreaded words, ‘contract season”. Cue Gump. Box of chocolates.

  8. Tom Edrington Says:

    Joe wouldn’t be hot after these so-called great free agents IF IT WAS HIS MONEY that had to pay them….

    Paying ineffective guys got Lovie the boot…….

  9. BigHogHaynes Says:

    THE BACK-STABBER got LOVIE the boot and it ain’t over, THE CONSPIRACY RUNS DEEP!!

  10. bucs4life86 Says:

    You have to take that risk with every player u sign. “Scared money don’t make money” I’m signing this guy in a heart beat! He is beast! More QB hits than A.Donald? and he’s only 25!!?? Bucs would be STUPID not to go after this guy.

  11. bucs4life86 Says:

    The only problem with drafting a DE is that they take a couple years to adjust to the game and O lineman so if u want production this year u gotta look to FA and theres rarely guys like Vernon available.

  12. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Other possible reasons he had an uptick in production:

    – a different defense

    – Playing next to Suh.

    – working hard in the off season to get better.

    The fact he was able to become an elite pass rusher is good enough reason to sign him. We haven’t had a guy with real pass rush ability in a very long time. he isn’t a 100 mil kind of guy, but he would certainly fetch 10 mil a year for 5 years. Pay the man!

  13. Tiny Tim Says:

    I said say no to a DE with only one double digit sack season. I said that stat is all too familiar to us buc fans. I said it on your very first article about this guy being a possibility for the bucs. You could have wrote this article a couple of weeks ago from my post.

  14. Tiny Tim Says:

    Michael Johnson the sequel. No one heard of michael johnson until he was considered the best DE in free agency. The same thing is happening for vernon. Just because you are considered the best DE in free agency doesn’t mean you are elite. When simeon rice was a free agent, he was already a 3 time pro bowler. He was already elite. Signing vernon hoping he becomes elite is idiotic. Say no to a player with only one double digit sack season.

  15. unbelievable Says:

    His age is right. But the 1 good season scares me off. You can’t pay him like we did with Ghost Johnson. But I would still try to sign him. We have tons of cap room

  16. pick6 Says:

    he was part of an unusually talented unit last year also, not unlike michael johnson and george johnson when each of them caught the bucs’ eye. i’d proceed with caution

  17. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    That is why you sign him AND draft a DE with the first pick.

    All Free Agents come with risk.

  18. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    It’s not rocket science.

    Sign WR Jermaine Kearse
    Sign WR Marvin Jones
    Sign DE Olivier Vernon
    Sign SS Eric Berry
    Sign DE Jason Pierre-Paul if can buy low due to injury

    Franchise Doug Martin
    Convince Mankins to play 1 more year

    1st Pick – Draft DE
    2nd Pick – Draft OT or OG
    3rd Pick – Draft CB
    Rest of Picks – BPA

    The free agents, other than JPP, are young, mid level talent that have the potential to explode. Eric Berry would be depth with the potential to explode. The WRs have reputations for solid hands…and drops are the biggest issue with our WRs. Good route runners too.

    Jason Pierre-Paul will get paid, but not nearly as much as he would if the hand were not an issue. A team is going to get some sort of bargain on him…may as well be us.

    I find it ironic that people here are saying how its a bad sign Olivier Vernon improved in a contract year…yet those same people want to give Doug Martin a big contract.

  19. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Michael Johnson had 12.5 sacks the last 3 years.

    Olivier Vernon had 26.5 sacks the last 3 years.

    Vernon is MORE THAN DOUBLE.

    ’nuff said.

  20. Pickgrin Says:

    What good is it to have a ton of $ available for Free agency if you aren’t going to use it to try and fill your team’s biggest holes?

    Bucs will have at least $20-$25M available for FA spending this year.

    FA is a crap shoot for every team every year. Do your research and sign whomever you deem the best player(s) available to try and fill that need.

    Whether that is Vernon or JPP or whoever – You gotta try.

    We need pass rushers desperately – and the Bucs need to keep drafting and keep signing guys until they find the right players to help McCoy put pressure on the QB.

    Once accomplished – everyone will be amazed how much better our current DBs look…

  21. John McKillop Says:

    You are quite the wordsmith Joe, Two limp Johnsons. That was beautiful. We do need some defensive ends, Vernon seems ok, but don’t overpay. I am always leery of high priced free agents, they work out sometimes and more often than not they don’t. I like free agency more for depth purposes. Vernon is a very good football player, I’m just saying be careful. Free agency can be fools gold!

  22. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    two limp Johnsons

    Man there is nothing worse than a limp Johnson!!!

    And sadly the Bucs can’t simply take a blue pill to “stiffen up” their pass rush.

  23. RustyRhinos Says:

    Sure bring Mr. Oliver aboard! He looks like he can do the job at DE, very well. Has good experience, has shown production every season, some better than others.
    How do we know if we over paid him? If Mr. Oliver has 7-9 sacks next season, will that be good, average or poor for what his services cost compared to what we expect to receive. Not sure what the word from the capsalaryoligist are on how much those services could cost us this season and next.
    I do hope if we do sign Mr. Oliver we get what we are expecting nothing les$. If it where my fund$, I would expect the most Bang for my Buc$.

    Go Bucs!

  24. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    StPeteBucsFan Says
    “Man there is nothing worse than a limp Johnson!!!”

    I’ll have to take your word on that…


  25. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    The thing to keep in mind is that Olivier Vernon did not just have a good contract year. He’s had 6.5+ sacks every year, and had 11+ two years ago.

    That’s not playing for the contract, that is consistency.

  26. Getaclue Says:

    Vernon was born in Miami,played for the university of Miami and now the Dolphins. A lot of teams will be interested in him but if Miami can not keep him we are the closest team to where he has been his entire life and we have the cap room and the need

  27. Getaclue Says:

    It’s always nice to say sign this guy but they have to want to come here too and that’s a selling point if he doesn’t stay in Miami

  28. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:


    Did you really just say Eric Berry would be signed for depth????? He was the best safety in football this year. And basically every year he has played. Wow bro, that comment really surprised me coming from you. But there is 0 chance he leaves KC.

    On topic, Vernon would be worth it IMO. I would also look at an incentives based deal for Chris Long. If he can stay healthy, he can be productive and cheap. The best of both worlds.