Free Agency Countdown: 26 Days

February 11th, 2017

Free Andre Holmes

The free agency dinner bell officially rings Thursday, March 9 at 4 p.m. The Bucs will be coming to the buffet table with a pile of cash. But how will they spend it? How much will they spend? Joe is counting down the days with a different look at a potential free agent signing.

There is no shortage of NFL receivers that would be embraced by Bucs fans.

Why? In-house names like Josh Huff, Derrel Walker, Bernard Reedy, Russell Shepard, Vincent Jackson and Cecil Shorts inspire little confidence or hope.

Therefore, intelligent Bucs fans are expecting, if not demanding, general manager Jason Licht deliver an experienced receiver or two in free agency.

America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston, needs and deserves better. The receiving corps is flimsy after Mike Evans, with all due respect to Rudy Humphries’ solid season in the slot.

So where do the Bucs turn for help?

One under-the-radar name is Andre Holmes in Oakland. He’s been playing behind Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper in the Raiders’ high-octane offense, and Holmes is likely to enter free agency.

Undrafted in 2011, Holmes turns 29 in June, and he’s caught a total of 75 balls for 1,020 yards and 10 touchdowns through the past three seasons.

Joe loves three things about Holmes:

  1. He hasn’t missed a game since 2013.
  2. He showed up in the playoffs this year against the Texans: four catches for 50 yards and a touchdown.
  3. At 6-5, 210 pounds, Holmes is a massive target who represents a deep threat.
  4. Holmes is a solid special teams player.

Nobody is going to mistake Holmes for a Pro Bowler, but this is the kind of guy you want competing on your football team, almost like a bigger, more durable Louis Murphy.

Joe would applaud signing Holmes, who won’t cost a fortune.

64 Responses to “Free Agency Countdown: 26 Days”

  1. Joeypoppems Says:

    When I saw 6-5 I thought it was a typo lol. Had no idea he was that big.

  2. mark2001 Says:

    We desperately need a WR in FA to go with some fresh young drafted talent. Please Jason, pull the Trigger.

    And gig me if you wish Joe, but after listening to Steve the last 30 years, off and on due to changes in my location, all I can say is God bless you man, and thanks for the many years of great sports talk. You have brought us smiles, laughs, curses, and many other thoughts and emotions. You have been always entertaining, I hope and pray for your recovery, and again, thank you.

  3. DB55 Says:

    Im listening….

  4. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Great find Joe. He has perfect compliment to ME written all over him.

  5. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Which in my opinion we should be looking for a compliment. Sanu was a compliment to Julio. This new guy gotta know an accept his role. ME Batman you will be Robin. Sorta like Pop and blkae.

  6. Blake_bucsfan Says:\

    I would reference any in doubt of Mike Evans distinguished professionalism, and wisdom beyond his years in this juicy, spicy quote.

    Mike Evans knows that it would be to his immediate benefit to be surrounded by as many explosive receiving weapons as possible.’

    Something tells me it’s because he has an intimate understanding of the offensive system in which he plays. And understands that legit targets down the field are what makes the proverbial engine hum.

  7. LakeLandBuc Says:

    Andre Holmes would be a good pickup for depth. But I like Robert Woods better than all of the free agent WRs.

  8. Defense Rules Says:

    We’ve got WRs for depth (like Shep); we need at least 1 WR (preferably 2) who fill a specific need I think: a deep threat. Someone who can stretch the field & keep the safeties honest. And not just someone who’s fast; someone who represents a bonafide threat once they catch the ball. No more lumbering giants who take forever to get down the field while Jameis runs for his life to buy time. And yes, a WR like Desean Jackson fits the bill in FA (there are others of course), but we also need to draft a WR with similar traits (Davis or Ross would be nice, but not holding my breath that either falls to the Bucs). More is better because injuries happen in the NFL, especially to the Bucs & especially to our WRs (and RBs) it seems like.

  9. LakeLandBuc Says:

    Defense Rules….I agree with you. I like Robert Woods because he’s 24 with a ton of experience. He caught 203 passes with the Bills in 3 seasons. He’s a good route runner, has decent hands. He would fit perfectly in this offense, opposite of Mike Evans. He has 4.45 speed, but he has miss 7 games in 4 years.

  10. Mark Says:

    Many prayers coming for the Big Dog!

  11. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    I have a feeling we will be disappointed on FA day. I don’t see us going after the top guys, just more bridge players for our new rookies. You shouldn’t get your hopes up for Poe, Campbell, Jeffery, etc…. We will hit the second wave of older role players on 2yr/1yr guaranteed deals IMO.

  12. Buccfan37 Says:

    Big Dog should have tried cannabis oil or extracts to improve his condition. No side effects and good chance of improvement. This is what I’ve read.

  13. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    LakeLand, Robert Woods IS 24! I thought he was much older for some reason (beer). I’d take him on a 1 or 2 year flyer and see how his health is. Now, that’s what I call an “under the radar” signing that can pay off big! Let’s go Licht!

  14. Defense Rules Says:

    Robert Woods is interesting to be sure Lakeland, but it sounds like he’ll be looking for around $8 mil as a FA to leave Buffalo. I like that he’s younger than some of the others we’ve been talking about, but $8 mil would be a bit steep I think for someone with his 4-yr record. Even with 4.45 speed, not sure what his 12 yds/catch average tells me about his capability to stretch the field.

    And BuccaneEric75, I really hope you’re wrong about Licht only shooting for the 2nd wave of FAs. That’ll doom us to mediocrity. Bucs need to add several impact FAs to get over the hump, on defense & on offense. We NEED a WR with speed, and free agency has several that would work for us. We NEED another OLineman, and again there are several available FAs who would improve our OLine significantly. We NEED a DT to shore up the middle of our DLine against the run, and preferably a DE to go along with him. There’s 4 FAs right there who could help put us over the hump. Draft picks are nice, but the odds of finding more than a couple starters aren’t in our favor. Licht needs to open the wallet and add several impact players if we’re going to do compete for a playoff spot this year.

  15. Kevin Says:

    Woods and holmes could be something….
    We need someone thats for sure

  16. StPeteBucsfan Says:

    I’m sorry but I’m not sure what “need” this guy fills. A second WR with NFL experience…yeah…but do we need another slow 6-5 receiver with 4.53 speed?

    His teammate Taiwan Jones smoked a 4.33! VJAX in his prime turned a 4.46.
    I’d just as soon roll with him and take a chance on injuries and draft some speed.

    We freaking need some speed…we are a SLOW team! Get D. Jackson and put an end to this!!!

  17. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    I’ll say this about him tho Pete his YouTube highlights display a guy snatching everything with his hands(I like and look for that) an an uncanny ability to box out smaller defenders. If we going Samules in the second I’m good wit this guy. He’s experienced so he knows defenses and already familiar with certain DBs thrub out the league. I like speed also but Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery were quite formidable those years in Chicago mafe Josh McCown look good. ME and a healthy Vjax were as well.

  18. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    “good luck covering those Twin Towers in Tampa” quote from Josh Norman.

    Norman knew Tampa WR height was a threat, so we need another tower for sure..I like Joe’s find..Indeed a 6 foot 5 WR??

  19. Blake_bucsfan Says:


    What If I were to tell you, that we could potentially draft a 6’5 & 1/2″ tall TE that can block like a tackle and run like a Clydesdale?

  20. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    Blake, if I was a guy, I would have one giant towel wrapped around my waist..this one no one knows the excitement I have about Howard..

    I’m on Howard..just don’t think he will make it to number 19..he’s a freak beast..

  21. Tbbucs3 Says:

    I’m all in on signing Andre Holmes, he catches everything thrown his way. He can be our James Harden, where he doesn’t thrive until he goes to another franchise cause 2 stars where in front of him .

  22. LakeLandBuc Says:

    We can draft Ricky Seals-Jones 6’5 240 WR from Texas A&M. We could get him in the 6th or 7th round.

  23. LakeLandBuc Says:

    But he’s probably better suited as a TE in the NFL.

  24. StPeteBucsfan Says:

    I’m with Lakeland and no thanks Blake…we simply are not desperate for a TE.

    Is Howard an upgrade over Brate…sure…but Brate led the league for TE TD’s…and he’s just beginning to come into his own.

    If we weren’t desperate at RB and WR I would consider him…he’s just a fix for a position that really isn’t as desperate as other spots.

    The spots I feel best about…QB…and then TE. We could use more depth in both lines and even LB’s…we may be weak at safety and we are desperate in our backfield. If there are great RB’s to be had in later rounds there will also be great TE’s available. ALL players in the later rounds are a 50-50 or worse gamble.

  25. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    A weapon is a weapon is a weapon.

    O.J. is a weapon. And one that would fit into Dirks offense perfectly.

    O.J. would benefit every facet of our Offensive attack. Him, Plus Curtis in the Second. And Perine, Mixon, or Wayne Gallman in the 3rd round would be Mucho Armas Por Yameis.

  26. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    Blake..I’m not sure he will be there at 19..

  27. StPeteBucsfan Says:


    If we get Samuels in the 2nd I would not be unhappy with Howard…especially if he can block which means some two TE sets. Brate has earned the right to get some snaps at this point…and Samuels would provide speed.

    Again to be honest as we’ve all agree we’re putting the cart before the horse in terms of the draft until we see who we can land in FA. If Licht decided to snag two WR’s and one of them was a blazer like D Jackson that would change everything.

  28. LakeLandBuc Says:

    St.Pete I agree with you.

  29. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Give me a smart player over a talented player anyday- Jimmy Johnson and Bill Belichess. Brate comes from Harvard.

  30. Joeypoppems Says:

    So does that mean you would take McCaffrey over Cook then? McCaffrey went to Stanford.

  31. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    H3ll no. Those are they’re words.

  32. Joeypoppems Says:

    Just checking. Seemed like you agreed with them

  33. macabee Says:


    4th time I’ve seen this. Never say never!

  34. LakeLandBuc Says:

    Ed McCaffrey also went to Stanford.

  35. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Mac I think it makes since. Can I guarantee it no. I just can’t understand why so many seem to oppose it. I can’t be the only person feeling like it would make for a good marriage. Will see draft night as continue saying. I just find it hard to believe that a talent like that wouldn’t be noticed by our brass considering our RB situation. Some don’t like the idea of a RB round one,I get it. But for a special talent I feel those rule go out the window. Thanks for the link tho bro. And again if my draft wish does not happen I won’t kill myself trust me people.

  36. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Going over it tho Mac I really hope Solo Thomas doesn’t land in Carolina.

  37. NFLNut Says:

    I’d be thrilled t see Jameis have TWO receiving tight ends to work with ala Tom Brady, so I’d be happy with OJ Howard at #19 … however, honestly David Njoku is even more of a freak and may be an even better “weapon” at least in the passing game so I’d be okay with him at #19 too.

    David Njoku:

    Evan Engram is also a GREAT receiving TE and could be had in the 2nd, maybe even the 3rd round:

    The thing that perhaps separates OJ from Njoku and Engram is his “blocking”, however if you’re looking for a great all-around TE that you don’t have to spend a 1st round pick on, JORDAN LEGGETT could be a great pick in the 3rd or 4th round:

  38. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Mac the one you just posted, when you read the commentary of they are saying makes the most since in relation to the breakdown of team’s needs and reasons for them. What it says about Dalvin and the Bucs is exactly how I feel bro. I can’t be alone in obviously in my sentiment. Who ever wrote that could probably give a rats about the Bucs.

  39. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    On the link Mac just posted they have Ozzie taking Howard. Might be too much for the HOF former TE to pass.

  40. NFLNut Says:

    NOSBOS … that mock has Jonathan Allen going #11 to the Saints … which seems … absurd. I’d discount the mock entirely.

  41. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @NFLNut Njoku Appears to be an explosive receiving weapon, but his blocking technique is unrefined. And O.J. looks like the more fluid runner.

    I’m not too high on Engram, looks like an over sized receiver.

    Leggit is Solid all around but the worst athlete out of the group.

    O.J. Howard can do it all. Reminds me a lot of Greg Olson/ Travis Kelce.

  42. macabee Says:


    Discount all mocks. The reason they’re called mocks is that they are not real. I posted that one because I know how much NoSBoS wants Dalvin Cook for the Bucs. Mocks are only good for the fun and commentary they generate.

    But anything can happen though. Never in your life would you have thought that we would trade up in the 2nd for a Kicker. It happened! I have no wish for any particular player in the draft and I do mock drafts having no expectation that they’re going to do what I think. Hasn’t happened yet.

    BTW, aside from QB, I haven’t seen anybody in a 1st round that wouldn’t help the Bucs. lol. Just have fun man!

  43. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Mac I’m saying Jarret and Watson going to Cleveland they feel the same. We are fans but when you look at rosters we can get close. First one saying Dalvin to the Bucs. The summer is young,sure it won’t be the last.

  44. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    They are mocks and don’t mean anything but when you look from a distance we as fan can get close now.

  45. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Cmon Joe, Why has my comment been in moderation for 30 minutes?

  46. Joeypoppems Says:

    on the topic of TEs if Jake Butt really falls to day 3 because of his injury like the rankings say. I would like that pick.

  47. macabee Says:


    I would love to have Dalvin, But I would be happy with Corey Davis, Mike Williams , TEs Howard or Njoku. My point is never say never in a mock draft. When NFLNut says he discounts the mock because he fell to the Saints at 11. I would have expected more like they already got Sheldon Rankins in 2016, so getting Jonathan Allen doesn’t make sense. But Allen can Fall to 11 if a picture of him with a gas mask on or he falls out of a second story window from smoking weed. lol.

    Last year DT Andew Billings was in every 1st round mock, but got picked in the 4th. Freak FS Javon Kearse/Clemson was in every 1st round mock, he got picked in the 6th round. So anything can happen!

    A run on QBs which could happen and will certainly push Dalvin toward the Bucs. It could happen and the Bucs could pick someone else. You just never know. My advice – enjoy Mocks but don’t bet money on one simply because it agrees with your preference!

    Enjoyed the convo, have a good evening fellas.

  48. Joeypoppems Says:


    “My advice – enjoy Mocks but don’t bet money on one simply because it agrees with your preference!”

    Too late for some people on here lol

  49. Oxycondoms Says:

    Seems like koetter has a hard on for speed who would fit that bill the best in the first round?

  50. LocalJoker Says:


    That would be WR John Ross/Washington. 4.28/40

  51. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @LocalJoker John Ross is definitely a speedster, but he can’t beat press coverage, and he’s not a hands catcher, he catches almost every deep ball by pinning it against his body.

    Those are 2 big negatives for a WR to have if you’re going to spend a first rounder on him.

  52. NFLNut Says:

    The mocks I’ve been reading have been killing Cook and it sounds like he may indeed slip to #19 as they’re saying he has a drinking problem and a posse of gang-bangers he runs with … I can see even a lots of Bucs fans being scared 2 draft him and wanting Mac, Foreman or even Perine or Kamara by draft day … crazy.

  53. Joe Says:

    The mocks I’ve been reading have been killing Cook and it sounds like he may indeed slip to #19 as they’re saying he has a drinking problem and a posse of gang-bangers he runs with … I can see even a lots of Bucs fans being scared 2 draft him and wanting Mac, Foreman or even Perine or Kamara by draft day … crazy.

    Jason Licht does his homework on perceived problem children. Licht was the guy who did the background checks on Honey Badger in Arizona. Clearly, Licht did the research on Jameis. And naturally, Licht was satisfied with Noah Spence’s turnaround as a human being. So if Licht drafts Cook, that tells Joe the investigation on Cook came up positive.

  54. cmurda Says:

    Free agency is one thing but life is another, much more important thing. No matter what anyone says about Big Dog, he is a passionate man and I respect that. I want you to know Joes that I’m sending good thoughts and much love to Steve Duemig. Get well Steve. I’m pulling for you sir.

  55. Joe Says:

    O.J. is a weapon. And one that would fit into Dirks offense perfectly.

    You now this how? Joe has never seen O.J. Howard take one snap in the NFL, not even in practice.

    So you are saying a tight end who led the NFL in touchdowns doesn’t fit Dirk Koetter’s offense? LOL That’s a stretch. Pretty safe bet if Brate didn’t fit the offense, he wouldn’t play.

  56. NFLNut Says:

    Joe …. I hear ya on Licht’s background checks and Dalvin Cook and I think Cook is a special talent … but … Licht is also the guy that re-signed Doug Martin …

  57. Joe Says:

    Joe …. I hear ya on Licht’s background checks and Dalvin Cook and I think Cook is a special talent … but … Licht is also the guy that re-signed Doug Martin

    Sure, and Licht covered himself with the void of the contract if Martin got popped.

  58. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Joe Says:
    February 12th, 2017 at 2:05 am
    O.J. is a weapon. And one that would fit into Dirks offense perfectly.

    You now this how? Joe has never seen O.J. Howard take one snap in the NFL, not even in practice.

    So you are saying a tight end who led the NFL in touchdowns doesn’t fit Dirk Koetter’s offense? LOL That’s a stretch. Pretty safe bet if Brate didn’t fit the offense, he wouldn’t play.

    That’s a pretty big Jump in logic you just made. By no means would O.J. need to be a replacement of a Cam Brate, And I never inferred such a thing. I do happen to believe he would be a valuable addition, as it’s evident to me that Howard is much faster than Brate, See the last 2 National championship games as evidence.

    I would judge his skills as a blocker to be well above average, seeing that in his game tapes he regularly stonewalls top tier DE/OLB prospects on tape, Like Myles Garrett and Derek Barnett. And I see him routinely spring runners free for big gains as a lead blocker.

    Also, the argument of never seeing him take a snap in the NFL, practice or otherwise, is pretty weak Joe. Because you can literally make that same argument for each and every single draft prospect. Including your beloved Dalvin Cook.

  59. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    A 2 TE set of Brate and Howard would provide some much needed versatility to our offense, Specifically our Redzone packages. My logic behind this being that both of them can do basically everything well. And I see Dirk scheming up some great plays involving the 2 of them.

    I am also a firm believer that the TE position as a whole has evolved into a role of greater importance in today’s NFL. Just look at the offensive attack that Bill Belicheat attempted to construct for his team this year. Sure, they have a solid group of wideouts, But they already had a guy who many consider to be the best Tight end playing today ( when healthy ), and they still went out and signed another top 10 tight end in Martellus Bennett.

  60. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    My last comment in this thread has been in moderation for over an hour. Cmon dude.

  61. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    *almost an hour*

  62. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Emphasis on “lead the league in TDs by a TE and just coming into own” like always wise words Pete.

  63. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    A league with Tyler Eifert,Zach Irtz and Greg Olsen to mention a few.

  64. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @Nosbos If Joe would actually let my comments through, you would see my well reasoned argument behind the effectiveness of 2 tight end sets.

    And why having 2 high octane, do everything TE’s would be a massive benefit. And it’s something that Bill Belichick has already done twice now.