An A+ For The Bucs — From Atlanta

May 4th, 2016
Bucs DE Robert Ayers

Bucs DE Robert Ayers

Perspective on a team’s offseason moves is highly subjective.

So Joe always is eager to get national takes on the Bucs, as well as those from NFC South markets.

Esteemed D. Orlando Ledbetter, Falcons beat writer for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, was all pumped up for Tampa Bay yesterday. Ledbetter penned a neat look at what’s transpired in the NFC South since the Super Bowl.

The grade for the Bucs? A+


Gains: Vernon Hargreaves III, CB (first round); Noah Spence, DE (second round); Roberto Aguayo, PK (second round); J.R. Sweezy, OG; Robert Ayers, DE; Brent Grimes, CB;

Losses: Connor Barth, PK; Da’Quan Bowers, DE; Martin Ifedi, DE.

On the schedule: The Bucs have the fifth toughest schedule (.543).

Comment: The Bucs went into the draft trying to help their secondary and pass rush. Hargreaves was considered the second best cornerback in the draft behind Jalen Ramsey and they added defensive end Noah Spence, a top-10 talent who slipped to the second because [of a] failed drug test at Ohio State. The Bucs then made a bold move by trading up to select Aguayo in the second round. He made 49 of 49 field goal attempts inside of 40 yards and was the first kicker drafted in the second round since the Jets took Mike Nugent in 2005. They also spent the second most cash in free agency on Sweezy ($32.5 million), Ayers ($19.5 million) and Grimes ($13.5).

Offseason grade: A-plus

That’s hearty praise. You’ll have to click through above to see that Ledbetter (a friend of Joe) is no sunshine and lollipops grader.

Did Jason Licht do it again, back to back great offseasons following the worst (2014) in Bucs history?

28 Responses to “An A+ For The Bucs — From Atlanta”

  1. Bucsfanman Says:

    High praise from a familiar foe! Lets hope that we don’t just serve up lip-service!
    Watch out NFC South! We’re aiming for you!

  2. Howard Cosell Says:

    Howard suspects that the Bucs will be very good in 2016. The positive karma is so thick you could cut it with a knife.

  3. mike n Says:

    The biggest and best thing that happened this off season was the subtraction of Lovie with out having to blow the whole thing up. Be able to build off of Dirk’s season is huge. 9/11 in the GA Dome can’t get here soon enough.

  4. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Look ima Nole pure corner VH3 is not second best to Ramey. He played the position one year for christ sake. What makes them even as football players is Ramey’s versatility.

  5. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Man the south on notice. Soon the entire league will be.

  6. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    Got folks rpund here talkin bout what the aints about to do cause they drafted rankins. Please I wasn’t all that inpress when he went up against my Noles last season.

  7. The Buc Realist Says:

    Its funny, A year ago the NFC south was down and out!! with a 7 win team taking the division. And after a very soft schedule Now the NFC south is walking around looking for all comers!!

    I just would like to see the Bucs leap frog the Falcons and Saints this year!! Get out of the basement!!!

  8. Nolebuc Says:

    Worst draft in history? More propaganda spewed by Joe.

    Learn how to read. Joe was not writing about just the draft, and neither is the Atlanta writer. Why the hate? Remainder of your comment deleted.–Joe

  9. Mike Johnson Says:

    We had a good draft. Solid B in my opinion. Yet and Still, Games must be played and heart displayed. Seems like we may be on the right track defensively. Come September, we will know for sure. Just like us, other teams have improved as well. Will our improvements equal more wins? We shall see. Let loose the dogs of War!!

  10. Bucamania Says:

    Almost forgot about Sweezy! Ayers is going to be a key piece to the puzzle this year. Good draft. Spence will be a terror!

  11. Aguayo2019SuperBowlMVP Says:

    Speaking of Aguayo and the Falcons, go in your home film room (i.e., YouTube) and pull up the Aguayo clips from from the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl last year. He was slipping all over that Georgia Dome turf (fell down on at least 2 kicks), missing a (53-yard) field goal, messing up a pooch kick. I’m glad there’s going to be a new stadium in Atlanta in 2017 and it’s not going to matter in 2016 because Jameis is going to throw 5 TDs.

  12. Big Marlon B Says:

    So this clown includes Martin Ifedi in the loss category, and says Tampa was second in free agency spending (when just off the top of my head the Giants, Raiders, and Jags all spent wayyyyy more). Yea…..he sounds like a pretty knowledgeable source. GTFO Ledbetter.

  13. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    J.R. Sweezy, Robert Ayers, and Brent Grimes haven’t all panned out yet.

    Props when props are EARNED.

    Bucs have been paper champions too many times.

  14. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    @Big Marlon B


    He probably meant in our division.

  15. Rrsrq Says:

    I like how the Dirty Birds drafted Deion Jones from LSU to play middle linebacker, I wonder where they got that idea from (Lovie/Leslie), a fast smallish linebacker to play the middle. You think Dan Quinn saw some Kwon in his game, especially how he took the game from Atlanta in the dome.

  16. Big Marlon B Says:


    Lol yea you’re probably right. But that really boggled my mind when I saw Ifedi’s name. No mention of Bruce Carter, Danny Lansanah, Henry Melton….not that any of those guys did a whole lot last year, but they’re a hell of a lot more noteworthy than Martin F’ing Ifedi haha

  17. Erik with Clean Athletics Says:

    Bucs Superbowl Title in 2016…

    All Aboard…

  18. MadMax Says:

    Im giving this draft a solid A.

    With Caleb and Vitale plus our first 3 picks, then you throw a pretty good looking Safety in Ryan in there…, thats just too good to be true. But if so, this draft is better than the last one. Unreal!

    Keep it up Licht!! glazers WILL NOT allow you to leave, EVER.

    Sidenote: Ive been looking at the udfa’s and this cat Devonte Lambert (6’2 – 282) looks pretty good as a backup DT/DE for us. He needs to work on his reaction times to get off faster…seems he delays a half second to full second at times to get going on some plays. But when he does get off on time, he looks pretty good. Surprised he went undrafted.

  19. Pickgrin Says:

    The Bucs are heading in the right direction now thanks to Jason Licht – and most everyone can see it.

    No props for the Daryl Smith pick up Eh? Not mention worthy? He’s only the 5th leading tackler in the whole league over the last 3 years.

  20. MadMax Says:

    Didnt know that Pickgrin, thanks. Im glad we got him too.

  21. Ken Says:

    Shouldn’t the loss of Bowers really be considered a gain?

  22. Rod Munch Says:

    Licht has been a complete failure when it comes to free agency – considering how this grade is for the entire offseason and not just the draft I don’t see how you can say “did Licht do it again” as Licht has yet to have a successful offseason. Give the guy credit for the draft all you want, but also don’t pretend it was only Lovie signing FA’s and that the 2nd tier FA’s the Bucs signed this offseason look all that different than the 2nd tier FA’s that have mostly been busts so far.

  23. HIRE JIMBO Says:

    Lol the nfl network obviously hates the bucs, they have Mariota and tyrod Taylor ranked ahead of Winston. They have Derrick Carr rated worse than Mariota. Titan fans much. This is rediculous. ME13 as the 15th Wr. This is absolutely laughable

  24. Bob in Valrico Says:

    @rod munch
    they haven’t played ,yet so the jury is still out.We can say for sure every every
    player brought in from Chicago was at Lovie’s insistence and only conte was a decent
    addition. These new free agents do have the advantage of not playing for one of the worst talent evaluators and game managers in our history.
    Just one example Lovie wanted to get rid of Doug martin and Koetter talked him out of it.

  25. HIRE JIMBO Says:

    Doug is ranked 10th with Ingram, (F#cked up knee) J.Charles, and Lamar miller ranked ahead of him. Lol that’s ok. Haters will be our motivators

  26. godzilla13 Says:

    Martin Ifedi was drafted by the Rams in the 7th round. An A+ is just a bit if an stretch. If you want an A+ draft let me give it to you.

    1) CB Vernon Hargreaves
    2) DE Noah Spence
    3) K Roberto Aguayo
    4) NT Andrew Billings
    5) SS KJ Dillen
    6) WR Michael Thomas
    6) FB Dan Vitale

    I like our draft I just did not like that we did not address a playmaker at WR and still have not prioritized an elite DT/NT o play next to Gerold McCoy. I don’t like the fact that we have made such great moves at the CB position group but still have not made any moves at Safety other than Ryan Smith. This years FA signings are better than most are giving credit for. DE Robert Ayers almost did not happen and he will help the players around him. Same can be said about Brent Grimes. The two players no one mentions is Doug Martin, who we could have lost and Josh Robinson. Robinson played better than anyone is giving him credit for back in 2014 and he has a shot a being a starter on the outside.

  27. Tbbucs3 Says:


    Can’t address everything in one offseason.

  28. Capt. Tim Says:

    I draft think with Great DTs, and we didnt get one

    I want to love this draft. I really do. I loved the last one!
    But I cant

    Speed kills. Size dominates.

    Short, slow Cb. Short, Slow DE
    Then A Kicker. Which was ok I guess, but we sure had alot of dire needs
    And we had to waste a pick to trade up for him???

    Nobody else was gonna steal him away. Kickers can let you down quick
    The narrower goal post just ruins some
    Anyone remember Russel Erxslaven( spelled poorly, sorry)
    He sure put egg on an organizations face.

    Like the safety, OT, anf Fb for late rounds
    Just cant feel good about top picks.