Ball Is In Your Court, McDougald

March 13th, 2017


It seems clear Bradley McDougald — or his agent — may have grossly miscalculated his worth.

One might even suggest McDougald is overrated.

Joe is not trying to bang on a guy who very possibly could be an ex-Bucs player. Just think back to two weeks ago. We all thought McDougald, a free agent, was likely the best safety on the Bucs. Learned NFL analysts seemed united, saying McDougald would likely be a steal in free agency as he likely wouldn’t break the bank but would provide solid play.

Nearly four days after the free agency dinner rang, McDougald is still looking for work. That either tells Joe many, many, many folks overvalued McDougald, or he — specifically, his agent — is trying to heist some NFL owner and hasn’t yet found a sap.

Over the weekend, Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht was coy about McDougald’s future. But after signing two safeties this past weekend, it is clear to Joe: McDougald will return only under Licht’s terms.

49 Responses to “Ball Is In Your Court, McDougald”

  1. Wausa Says:

    I’d like us to resign him on a 2 year Buc friendly deal.

    He can compete for his old job and help out on special teams.

  2. JabooBuc Says:

    Can’t blame the guy for trying to cash in. However, at the end of the day he was an UDFA and an average S under Mike Smith. If he stays here in this system and continues to develop he might cash in on his next contract. He’s only 26 and shows some promise. Come on back, give us some depth at a position of need and be a part of a SB contender. That’s what will get you paid.

  3. Defense Rules Says:

    Personally don’t think Bucs will re-sign McDougald. With Tandy, Conte & now JJ Wilcox on the roster, gut feel is that Licht will draft a safety in middle rnds to make the 4th, then let them all battle it out for starting spots.

  4. Architek Says:


  5. Miko Says:

    tandy, wilcox and conte are backup safeties. period…this position is trouble!

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

    This position is perfectly fine. With a fresh 8 man rotation up front the play on the back end should be fine. You people act as if all-pros are gonna be at every spot on team. Not. Still waiting on one of you to tell me the named of safeties from the giant team that beat the undefeated pats in the superbowl wit out hittin google. I bet you could tell those D linemen quite quickly tho.

  7. Stpetebucsfan Says:


    Agree completely! If the Bucs make it to the SB all the borderline players become good…all the good player become great and then they can cash in for checks well above their true value. SB participants frequently get overpaid in FA.

    Just win baby!

  8. RawBucFan Says:

    He & Tandy seemed to work well together in tandem. Competition within is the root of all good/great teams. Hopefully, he’ll come back & add to the competition, if not draft is safety deep. Front office seems to have learned from previous mistakes & are now building a winning TEAM!!!

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

    I watched each our safties make plays last season. I seen them all get a few picks, I seen them all keep a few potential scores from being scores. I watched a safety go down and another one came in and made game closing ints. It took the entire D half the season to become comfortable with the scheme. Some of you act like because you witnessed Troy P in the steel city and Ed Reed in B more play like what they are future HOFrs that that is the norm. It isn’t. These dudes were good enough to make a roster in the nfl and people come a site and call them garbage. Imagine that he’s in the league And you post comments but that guy is garbage. Wow.

  10. Spacebuc Says:

    You got that right, nos-bos!
    I’ve been bangin the front 7 will make your DBs all pro drum for weeks now.
    Crush the QB on the pass rush and watch the picks rain down.

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

    Memo to you all “everyone gets beat every now and then”. Just ask Richard Sherman after facing ME for the first time last season.

  12. mike10 Says:

    I’m on board w/ Miko – we got a boat-load of backup safeties and we need a captain anchoring the secondary.

    (that was 4 pirate puns, you’re welcome)

  13. Topdoggie Says:

    NoleOnSat you are correct. Some think this is fantasy football. You get a probowl player at every position.

  14. Miko Says:

    tandy’s been a backup for years, wilcox bumped to bench last year, conte misses tons of tackles…the best of the bunch is mcdouglad and he might walk…that’s a downgraded group without mcdougald…and hard to fix with rookies…

  15. louis Says:

    With the anticipated pressure expected from our new front 4, defensive back dont have to smother the receivers beyond 5 seconds. A stout d line makes the d backs look good!

  16. Joeypoppems Says:


    There is a lot of middle ground between all pros and average players which is what our safeties are now, including Wilcox and McDougald. They’re just average.

  17. Bucsfanman Says:

    The defense is symbiotic, interdependent on each group; DL,LB,CB,S. Upgrades to the DL take pressure off of the CB and S group. It works the other way too but the DL in this case has more of an impact than the safeties. Short of having an Eric Berry type, every position on both sides of the ball can always be upgraded. It’s just extremely rare to have All-Pro level talent at EVERY position.
    We’re OK, possibly better than average if we get pressure on QBs.

  18. Joeypoppems Says:

    And yes, a good pass rush makes life for DBs easier. Also good coverage makes life for the DL easier. It works both ways, they compliment each other the same way a strong passing game helps the run game and vise versa.

  19. Eric Denman Says:

    I’d rather have Conte over McDougald any day. We will draft another safety in this draft for sure now.

  20. JabooBuc Says:

    Miko- they aren’t backup safeties just because you say they are. All of them have been starters for extended amounts of time and 3 of them for this team, which played well defensively for the 2nd half of the season. Keep in mind the change in system with Mike Smith. Once they became confident in what they were doing they performed well. You could argue that both McDougle and Tandy played at a very high level for last quarter of the season which is why he is trying to cash in.

  21. THETRUTH Says:

    Did anyone notice Conte had to game saving touchdowns where he ran down the player and prevented touchdown. He had 2 picks that made a huge difference. Remember NO ONE PLAYED GOOD first half of season on defense.

    Not saying he is great but cut the guy a break.

    Prefer McDougle back and develop players.

  22. Not there yet Says:

    NOOOOOOO YOU right he was the best safety in this roster and and glad Licht doesn’t agree with you,

  23. Bobby M. Says:

    I had this happen to a client once….agent pumped his head full of nonsense and he had overestimated his value so much, that he risked being on the street vs securing the guaranteed millions. I understand wanting to pull in as much as possible but there’s also the risk of not cashing in because you were so focused on a few million more then what was on the table.

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

    TRUTH they’ll act like they don’t recall those type of plays.

  25. Miko Says:

    conte couldn’t get his job back from tandy late in the year…ya’ll are delusional…i sense a high pick will be spent on free safety position in the draft, 1st round even, if right player falls…

  26. Joeypoppems Says:


    Drafting a Safety early would be a wise move imo

  27. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    JabooBuc Says
    “However, at the end of the day he was an UDFA and an average S under Mike Smith.”

    Average? I disagree.

    He came as a rookie and each year after that, his stats took a leap forward. Last year, he was a top ten safety at his position according to the stats. TOP TEN.

    That’s not average.

    The Bucs need to sign him to a 4 year deal. Pay a little more. The kid is turning into an elite Safety and this might be the year he makes that jump. If the Bucs sign him to a 2 year deal, they risk losing him sooner. Sign him to a 4 year deal, with a little guaranty and lock him up.

    $16m for 4 years would seem fair, with $8m guaranteed. That way if he doesn’t pan out, the Bucs can drop him after two years have passed.

  28. Joeypoppems Says:

    Top 10 acording to what stats? Tackles? Lol

  29. briandorry55 Says:

    “We” thought McDougald was the best safety on the team? I don’t know if people forgot already…but Keith Tandy was the best player on the whole damn defense over the last month of the season. Not sure how it happened…but he was.

  30. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    NosBos is correct. It’s about the front 4 not the back 4. Great qbs can still pick apart great secondaries if given time but if you have a front 4 that qbs fear that they have to pay attention to before the snap their eyes will be focused closer to the los at the snap. Great even imagined pressure can lead to mistakes but have a mediocre front and back 4 it’s a long hard day at the office.

  31. Defense Rules Says:

    Never expected safety to turn into a hot issue, but looks like it is. Last yr all of our safeties were average. Each one of them they made some outstanding plays, but lest we forget, each one of them got burned a number of times also. That’s not a good thing when safety is your last line of defense. None of them are particularly slow, but none of them are particularly fast either, and so without a great defensive scheme and excellent technique (good angles, tackling, etc), they’re all average safeties at this point. One or even two might break out this year, but at this point would rather draft a safety and let them all battle it out for starting slots. Seriously doubt Bucs will use a #1 pick however on a safety; too many other higher priority needs. But … stranger things have happened (not referring to last yrs draft obviously).

  32. Defense Rules Says:

    DavidBigBucsFan99 … “It’s about the front 4 not the back 4.” I think it’s really about all 11 playing as a TEAM. I remember several games last yr where our safeties stepped up BIG and kept us from losing those games. Same thing for our CBs. I remember games where the DLine was on fire, but other games (like the 1st Carolina game?) where we had GMC, McDonald & Ayers all out for the game. Stuff happens, and others need to step in and the TEAM not miss a beat. Firmly believe that’s what it takes to get to the playoffs in this day and age.

  33. DB55 Says:


    Luv ya bro but Conte is HOT Garbage. He’s like a treadmill cuz peeps be running all over him. And sure he made a play to win a game but he gave up more game losing plays than that.

    We need a safety that instills fear like “we don’t want to throw it to his side” or a safety that hits so hard RB are scared to hit.

    Until this def instills fear we won’t get over the hump.

    What good is it to be ahead by 10 in the fourth if the d is just gonna give up the booty every time? Just like the raiders game.

  34. Bucsfanman Says:

    @DB55- Imagine if Conte had some help. For instance, ANY QB pressure or RBs that are not untouched through the second level. “Hot garbage” is a little harsh considering the defensive unit, as a whole, did not play well through half the season.
    Same with McDougald, this is a TEAM game.

  35. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    Nole Nole Nole!!!

    You hit the nail in the head !!!

    Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:
    March 13th, 2017 at 8:08 am
    I watched each our safties make plays last season. I seen them all get a few picks, I seen them all keep a few potential scores from being scores. I watched a safety go down and another one came in and made game closing ints. It took the entire D half the season to become comfortable with the scheme. Some of you act like because you witnessed Troy P in the steel city and Ed Reed in B more play like what they are future HOFrs that that is the norm. It isn’t. These dudes were good enough to make a roster in the nfl and people come a site and call them garbage. Imagine that he’s in the league And you post comments but that guy is garbage. Wow.

  36. DB55 Says:


    Conte should have retired after this play. Any man with any pride in fact. Sh1t any coach with any pride should have cut him for his own health and well being.

  37. DB55 Says:


  38. DB55 Says:

    Should I continue?

  39. Bucsfanman Says:

    EVERY player gets burnt. Go look at Lynch versus Barry for the 80 yard run.

  40. DB55 Says:

    I wouldn’t be embarrassed is Barry Sanders made me look stupid. I don’t think anyone would.

  41. Bucsfanman Says:

    Alright, not the best example!!! You know what I mean though!

  42. I'm a Tandy Man Bucs Fan Says:

    Miko & Mike 10….Are you guys twin Brothers cause you both are out in left field. Were you guys watching the last 5 games of the season when Tandy was playing at a high level at the Safety Position? He is an excellent Safety that will again play at a high level in 2017 now that he has gained the respect of his Coaches and should be in the starting position from day 1…… Come back and talk to me when the season is over and tell me Tandy is an average Safety at best. Also it will be the end of his contract with the Bucs and they will sign him again for bigger money or he will be gone somewhere else because not just Buc Nation will know who Keith Tandy is at the end of 2017….The entire NFL will know who he is because he will become and All Pro…..Write it down and tell everyone you heard it from me first. I know how the Dude is wrapped and I can tell you he is a Bona Fide WINNER!!!!!!

  43. Pickgrin Says:

    Awww – Bonzai has him a little man crush on McDougald.

    9th best safety in the league eh? Um – NO. 29th? Maybe… – 39th? more likely.
    He played both free and strong so I’m not sure which “position” you are attributing those stats to. Doesn’t matter. Its not true. McDougald is not a top 10 safety at either position and if he was – he would not be out there practically begging someone to throw $5M per at him. The Bucs have likely offered a similar deal to McDougald as the one Conte signed. 1- year $3M. They know his skillset better than anyone in the league and the decision is they do not want to sign McDougald to a very expensive nor long term deal. That was the decision last year and is the decision this year as well. So that right there should tell you where we stand at safety. Needing an upgrade. McDougald and Conte both are way better than average back-ups. But they are worse than average starters. The Bucs not being willing nor prioritizing a long term commitment to either proves it.

    If McDougald does come back – it will be on the Bucs terms and price.

    This McDougald situation does give me the strong indication that we plan on drafting a safety this year – as well we should. This draft is loaded with safety talent down into the 3rd and 4th rounds. Guys with all pro potential level talent like Peppers, Melifonwu and Budda Baker may even be available in the 2nd round.

    I personally would love to see us trade up 10-15 spots in the 2nd to get a Budda Baker type player if the board falls that way. Great value for a clear 1st round talent IMO if we could make it happen.

    1st rd – Cook/ Davis/ OJ Howard / Njoku/ McCaffrey

    2nd rd – S- Melifonwu / Budda Baker / WR – Zay Jones

    3rd rd – RB Kareem Hunt / C- Ethan Pocic / WR Josh Reynolds

    If Licht could pull off any combination above – I would be very happy with the draft.

  44. bucs_365 Says:

    I’d put money on them drafting a safety in the first 3 rounds.

  45. Rod Munch Says:

    If the Bucs go into this next season with the same safeties as last year plus a Dallas reject who lost his job there – that’s not good. I want nothing to do with Conte but the Bucs signed him on the cheap. A rookie safety you just can’t expect to walk in and play day one, they need a little time to learn the NFL. Throwing out some of that cap space on a guy who is a clear starter made a lot of sense and I’m disappointed the Bucs didn’t do that.

  46. Bald Head Says:


  47. Bald Head Says:

    And,just why we couldn’t have signed Ted Ginn,he only got 3 million a year with the SAINTS.HE STILL HAS 4-4 SPEED AND A GOOD KICK OFF,AND PUNT RETURNER.

  48. captjimbo Says:

    Can Ginn play CB, Cause he sure can’t catch the ball.

  49. captjimbo Says:

    Or maybe safety?