The Ira Kaufman Plan: Kenny Britt And Three More Free Agents

March 8th, 2017


Mike Evans wants to know the identity of his new partner, and who can blame him?

Evans turned in a Pro Bowl season in 2016, despite constant double teams from opponents who didn’t lose a wink of sleep worrying about covering Adam Humphries, Russell Shepard, Cecil Shorts, Josh Huff or Freddie Martino.

Within a week, the Bucs will have a new No. 2 wide receiver. That’s all we know for sure at this point, and the rumors are strong that DeSean Jackson sits atop Jason Licht’s wish list.

That makes sense because Dirk Koetter covets a big-play target. Jackson leads all active players in career yards per catch (17.7) and he has at least one reception of 60 yards or more in each of his nine NFL seasons.

Buc fans are in a frenzy for Jackson, who still has game-breaking speed at the age of 30. He’s a very tempting target and I’m skeptical of all these reports suggesting a half-dozen teams are tripping over themselves to sign Jackson.

Those rumors are primarily driven by agents, and the speculation rises and falls by the hour.

We’ve already seen it. One minute Jerry Jones is prepared to make Jackson a contented Cowboy and the next minute, Dallas has lost interest.

Yes, the Bucs are intrigued, but may I suggest an alternative — younger, cheaper and perhaps even more attractive than Jackson.

His name is Kenny Britt, and he just turned in a 1,000-yard season for the Los Angeles Rams. That’s right, the 4-12 Rams, who were last in the league in both scoring offense and total offense.

Catching balls from Case Keenum and rookie Jared Goff, Britt somehow kept making plays downfield. Imagine what he could do with Jameis Winston and Evans around him?

Britt posted at least four receptions in 12 of his 15 games last year and he has no history of being a diva. Jackson has been known to pout about his contract and miss a meeting or two.

Jackson’s upside seems bigger, but so does the risk. Britt looks to be the safer choice.

The No-Brainer 

The Bucs shouldn’t be outspent for either receiver if they determine he is the guy they really want.

I would go with Britt, and I’m not stopping there.

So what if Calais Campbell has emerged as a coveted free agent? He belongs on the Bucs, and I don’t want to hear another word about Chris Baker. He can’t carry Campbell’s shoulder pads.

Baker has 12.5 sacks in his career — Campbell had eight sacks last year alone.

Buc fans want to see Campbell’s 6-foot-8 frame collapsing the pocket from the inside against Drew Brees, who has tormented Tampa Bay supporters for a decade by stepping up and delivering haymakers.

I haven’t heard or seen one negative note on Campbell, who by all accounts is a leader who demands immense respect in the locker room. Noah Spence could follow him around all day to learn how to be a professional.

Anyone saying that about Chris Baker?

Warriors & Common Sense

Another veteran free agent popped on the market Tuesday when the 49ers released  safety Antoine Bethea. Tampa Bay should do its due diligence on Bethea, who fills a position of need and is considered a pro’s pro, just like Campbell.

Buc fans have waited a long time for this moment. While San Francisco rebuilds and Arizona faces salary-cap issues, the Bucs are in a position to pounce — offering free agents wads of cash, Jameis Winston, sunshine, no state income tax and a franchise on the rise.

As always, the Glazers are firmly in the loop at this time of year. They want to know what Licht and Koetter intend to do, and why.

Hey, it’s their money.

If the Bucs come away with Campbell, Britt and Bethea, it sets them up nicely for the draft. And don’t forget about Nick Mangold, who can hold down the center spot for a couple of years while keeping Ali Marpet where he belongs.

The time to strike is now … and strike they will. Help is surely on the way for Mike Evans, Mike Smith and season-ticket holders from Tarpon Springs to Temple Terrace.

C’mon down to Tampa, fellas. The water’s warm. The cash is cold.

And there’s plenty of it.

Ira Kaufman, Tampa Bay’s only Pro Football Hall of Fame voter, writes columns for every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, and cranks out podcasts on Tuesdays and Thursdays. He’s also known for eating all the food not nailed to the floor. 

43 Responses to “The Ira Kaufman Plan: Kenny Britt And Three More Free Agents”

  1. owlykat Says:

    Couldn’t agree more, Ira. I sure hope it develops your way. It would allow us to pick the best player available in the draft. If we have our number 2 receiver we could take either the FSU running back we want or maybe even Howard if he is at 19 in the First Round.

  2. Lord Cornelius Says:

    “he has no history of being a diva”

    Maybe not a diva but I can find articles from when he was with Tennessee describing him as an “absolute headcase”

    Had 300 yards the year before 2016.. and not sure how much of his stats were in garbage time losses. The fact that the Rams are fine letting him walk is a red flag to me.. They need WR help as much as anyone and know what they have in him

  3. Tom Edrington Says:

    Well done, Ira!

  4. Dlavid Says:

    Ira , you are in rare form today my friend !

  5. al121976 Says:

    Djax and Campbell is atop my wish list, I would be ecstatic if we get both. couple that with another great draft and next year is going to be AWESOME!!!! (and expensive)

  6. Q Says:

    Only way britt comes is if jackson signs elsewhere….no way you take britt over jackson…thats absurd. …sign jackson …sign calias Campbell and mangold….i like our safties with mcdougald and tandy

  7. BIG IRISH.....SECTION 318 Says:


  8. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Jackson, Campbell, Britt, Bethea, Mangold

    I understand we can’t fill every role in the draft, but I wonder at some of the suggestions being made.

    Jackson – Diva
    Mangold – Unhealthy
    Britt – One year wonder

    I can get behind Campbell for a couple years. I would rather have someone younger, but he would be good enough and healthy enough, even if he is up there in years.

    Bethea is the best suggestion in this list.

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    @Lord C.- To add to that, numerous arrests!
    Meh to Britt!

  10. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    Great Job Ira, now tell us how you really feel 🙂
    I am in with Manbeast, I mean Nick Mangold

  11. Cobraboy Says:

    Nice write up.

    A big FA splash—and the Bucs will have to spend hefty $$$ to reach the cap minimum—will also sell a bunch of tickets, along with big Prime Time media exposure.

  12. gotbbucs Says:

    Britt may not have the diva personality, but he sure has been a knucklehead in the past. His Titans days are filled with more police reports than production on the field. Most of the FA recievers in this class come with a “buyer beware” attached to them.
    I wouldn’t sleep on Michael Floyd getting a look at some point down the road too if we’re looking to give knuckleheads second and third chances.
    Pierre Garcon would be my choice, but it looks like him going to the 49ers is all but a foregone conclusion as of right now.

  13. Name Requred Says:

    I agree with Cornelius. Britt has issues. Don’t forget about the stupidity of the golf cart incident made famous on Hard Knocks.

    DeSean Jackson checks all the boxes. He’s a Z receiver that is more of a 1A than a 2. He has moves. He gets open. He has natural hands. He has never had a receiver on the other side like Evans. With these guys combined with a solid Y in Humphries and a good receiving TE in Brate… This opens up so many possibilities for an offense with just one signing!

    You draft OL and defense and watch this team take off!

  14. JA Says:

    No no no Jackson…agree w Bill Polian and Ira…Britt is the way to go!

  15. Name Requred Says:

    I don’t get why you guys are afraid of a consistent playmaker.

  16. JAB83 Says:

    I just wet my pants!!!

  17. Architek Says:

    Very nice Ira – you’re a sage Bucs insider!!!

  18. Real Buc Fan Says:

    I thought that Britt was tweeting he was going to Eagles?

  19. JAB83 Says:

    Those of you clamoring for DJ forget… Ira knows talent!!! Beaides that… If we sign DJ why would you waste a draft pick this year for a guy that would take balls away from DJ and piss him off???

    Ira just laid the wood… Someone please make sure team Glazer reads this article and holds JL and DK feet to the fire…

    This way everyone can wet thier pants when toe hits leather in……. HOW MANY DAYS JOE’s????

  20. JAB83 Says:

    Also, when do all my post stop getting moderated? Pretty sure I have only ever said one thing the Joes had issues with… And really it was not that bad… Other than that… Its been all about restoring the true FANDOM of this fan base…

    Anyways… IDC my words have clearly been well received as I am pleased to see the turn around of some of the most negative posters…

    No More fans of depression in these parts of Buc Nation

  21. shouldhavedraftedefiert Says:

    I only come here for the Ira takes now, damn good stuff!

  22. Dirks GreatGranpappy Says:

    Firstly, Ira you are fantastic. A true professional

    I disagree with the Britt case tho and solely bc he has had some injuries in the past and for his own sake I don’t wish that to happen to him here in Tampa bc these fans are vicious when it comes to injured players

    bethea>Jefferson bc of $$
    Sadly I’m not sold on any of the wr really and don’t buy the notion that Pryor is such a hard worker and the jameis of the receivers as some claim. I find that absurd bc he’s not even close to that. Maybe Jackson at 10-12 mil

  23. celly Says:

    I’d still much rather have Kenny Stills than Jackson, Britt or any other available free agent receiver.

  24. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    Less than 10%…6.7% of last years FA’s made the pro bowl.

    But I’m not thinking of us getting a pro bowl player at all…I’m thinking of the players who make our existing pro bowl players that much better.

    DJAX makes ME13 better overnight. Campbell makes the entire DL…GMC included better overnight. Mangold takes Ali Marpet over the hump into the pro bowl and he protects our pro bowl QB and would be part of a group that makes our franchise…#3 better!

    Sign DJAX…Campbell..and Mangold..draft well and let’s pack our bags for Minneapolis!!!

    I’m getting more and more intrigued by Mangold after what Mack did for the Falcons last year.

  25. Dirks GreatGranpappy Says:

    Also, am I the only one who reads ira’s columns in his voice?

    Sometimes I even add a jab at Steve or throw a word of the day in there to make it seem like I’m apart of the podcast

    What would be cool is if ira would respond to comments on his articles the way the joes do

  26. Dirks GreatGranpappy Says:

    St Pete I like mangold too but there is talk about the eagles letting kelce or wiz go bc of $ or wiz wanting to play center. Either would be an upgrade but kelce(not sure on spelling sorry) is in his prime and a very very good linemen

  27. Stpetebucsfan Says:


    I’m open minded as long as we upgrade the center position…and find a starting RT.

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

    What Pete said man.

  29. Bobby M. Says:

    Finally….competence from this site on free agent WRs. Britt is the better fit. And if you’re looking at Britt, there’s a good chance other value WRs will be available after the draft as well. Torrey Smith is another….role the dice in the draft, maybe snag McCaffrey who can go out of the back field, in the slot and return kicks/punts. Keep in mind, there’s guys available for trade right now that we may not even be hearing about. Buc fans need to think how the Patriots operate instead of how the Cowboys. Licht is trying to be a contender yr in…year out as long as we have Winston….same as the Patriots with Brady. You’ll find yourself in salary cap hell adding 30 yr old recievers at $10-12 million per year.

  30. Lord Cornelius Says:

    “You’ll find yourself in salary cap hell adding 30 yr old recievers at $10-12 million per year.”


  31. Joe Says:


    Either you are using a previously banned IP address or there is something in your posts triggering the spam filter. And no, Joe is not an engineer and is not going to write new code for the filter, sorry.

  32. GhostofSchiano Says:

    @ Lord Cornelius – I agree with you. Maybe JOE and Ira have short memories –

    IF (A big IF) he has grown up and matured he might be worth a risk.

  33. Negative Jeff Says:

    I wish IRA was our GM. He wouldn’t have drafted a kicker in the 2nd round.

  34. Lord Cornelius Says:

    For me it just comes down to DJax being a proven commodity and adding an element to the offense we haven’t had in a long time.

    Britt is more of a possession WR like ME; and is not a proven commodity at all and not a guy that will command safety help for speed. He is by far the bigger risk; in terms of being more of a projection whereas we know exactly what we’re getting with Djax.

  35. Pickgrin Says:

    I like your take Ira – but would prefer to have Tony Jefferson as our new safety or they may just wait and draft a safety as there are a bunch of good ones coming out this year.

    Also would prefer DJax over Britt as long as Jackson doesn’t want ridiculous $.

    Campbell, Jefferson, DJax, Mangold in free agency.

    Then draft TE, RB and another good WR prospect in the 1st 3 rounds. Add CB, DL, OL and LB developmental prospects on day 3 of the draft and Super Bowl contenders we shall soon be….

  36. GhostofSchiano Says:

    Do we really want this in Tampa?-

  37. JAB83 Says:

    Fair enough

  38. Name Required Says:

    Look, I like Ira Kaufman. He’s a respected journalist and he has great insight. But Britt is trouble. Yes, he caught the most passes from the worst passing team in the league.

    DeSean Jackson is the perfect compliment for Evans. And for those complaining about money, the Bucs have about the most money to spend under the cap. As long as they’re not going on a spending spree, they can certainly afford the guy.

    Seriously. Who cares about diva mentalities if they’re lighting up the scoreboard? I’ve seen Jackson take over games. How many did Britt take over? I think he hit 100 yards a handful of times in his career.

  39. Hig Says:

    “The water is warm and the cash is cold”. Golden Ira!

  40. TampaTown Says:

    Ira this is why you are the Custodian of Canton! The only thing better than your articles are your podcasts. Love them both! ❤️

  41. Walktheplank Says:

    Britts alway been a below average wr and nay had one decent year. Please get a solid 2 wr not a has never been

  42. FutureBucsGM Says:

    If you don’t get Jeffries you might as well just keep the continuity and draft well.. Jackson, even if a diva has never blocked well and as afar as I know we’re still a run first team. That alone should disqualify Desean. Jeffries Evans and resign VJax. Draft depth.

  43. Destinjohnny Says:

    We need to draft smarter