Calais Campbell Chess Game Starts With Gholston

March 5th, 2017


The Bucs can’t afford to play games with their defensive line, but they might be forced into a high stakes contest in just four days.

General manager Jason Licht made it clear on SiriusXM NFL Radio the other day, part-time defensive end Will Gholston was a big part of the team’s defensive turnaround in the second half of last season.

Joe has no doubt the Bucs want Gholston back. But the question is, Does Gholston want to test the often-crazy lucrative free agency market for young defensive ends?

Let’s say the Bucs are offering Gholston $7 million annually with $16 million guaranteed as part of a three-year contract. (Yes, that’s really what it might take to sign him.) But if Gholston is advised he should try to get more, then what? The Bucs would be down an impact (in the run game) defensive end in just four short days.

The Bucs will give their best reasonable shot to sign Gholston in the next four days, Joe believes. If they can’t get that done, then Licht may throw his hands in air, say ‘I tried,’ and then jump in the deep end bidding on Cardinals stud manbeast DE/DT, Calais Campbell, the 30-year-old Pro Bowler coming off an eight-sack season.

Joe doesn’t think the Bucs would sign both Gholston and Campbell, but they definitely won’t get caught with their pants down when it comes to the D-line.

Gholston holds a lot of cards as the clock ticks towards the free agency dinner bell.

39 Responses to “Calais Campbell Chess Game Starts With Gholston”

  1. Architek Says:

    New England lets guys walk before they’re old and we sign them after they’re old – LOL

  2. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    New England signs their fair share of old guys too.

  3. Tampabayucfan Says:

    I don’t see why we can’t do both Campbell & Gholston but if we do Campbell, then we likely won’t draft Dline high….if we resign Gholston, then we probalbly will.
    My preference would be to sign both and concentrate on offense high in the draft.

  4. Trubucfan22 Says:

    I would love Calais Campbell. He is no part time player like gholston and a huge upgrade for our d line. It would cool to have both, but calais is the better player, by a lot.

  5. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Agreed TBBF I want both.

  6. macabee Says:

    The Bucs want William Gholston back, but not much interest being rumored in free agency. Gholston is #86 in RotoWorld’s top 100 FAs by Evan Silva. Calais is #13. Campbell is reported to be top target of Denver Broncos.

  7. Guzzie Says:

    Free agency really starts Tuesday, just can’t sign anything till Thursday

  8. Kevin Says:

    New England does sign older free agents, but they also are the best at getting the most out of they’re young players. Young rookies and second year players stepping up into large roles and performing well. I hope the bucs make a splash in FA but I can’t wait to see how Koetters coaching in his second year evolves and how much our young guys can have an impact on game day when called upon.

  9. martinii Says:

    I for one hope they re-sign Gholston. He was picked by the Buc’s, He has been a loyal hardworking player who like most Buc’s D-lineman with the exception of GMC has played a rotational role both inside and out. He has been very good against the run and while he has not been a leading sack player, he contributes a lot of QB pressure. I cannot wrap my mind around the logic that says we can’t have both Campbell and Gholston. It screams that we will reward a 30 yr old mainstay of the Arizona Cardinals and not a consistent homegrown player who still has upside and is growing. Sign them both, we have the cap space and we need to prove Management has improved since Michael Bennett.

  10. Poor Glennon Says:

    7 M… way.We gotta let him walk. Free agent’s are licking their chops right now. With the cap at 170M and lots of team with lots of cash. Most free agents will be overpayed. In 2 years alot of teams will be a bad spot because they are paying dead money. To the 2017 free agents they overpayed. Remember Nicks,Wright and Jackson. Jackson was worth it for 3 years. Then grossly overpay after that. Nicks was an unfortunate injury. Wright helped us out of his contracts. By voiding it because of peds. Without that voided contract. Those FA signings would have crippled the team. 30M a season those 3 were pulling in.

  11. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @PoorGlennon Do you not remember the drop off the Defense had when Gholston went down with injury? I do. And that crap was ugly.

    Why do so many fans act as if depth isn’t important? Yeah you need game-breakers, preferably at every position. But it’s arguably just as important to make sure the drop off after those guys is as minimal as possible.

    We gotta stop acting like were allergic to depth.

  12. Mort Says:

    If anyone gives gholston 16 million guaranteed then they should be instantly fired. On the spot.

  13. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @Mort Over 3 years? Thats an average of 5.3 million per year. Not that bad honestly.

  14. Lord Corn Says:

    I think we let him test the market to find out the price isn’t that high and he comes back

  15. Bird Says:

    Telling you. Campbell with get north of 15 mil. 15 – 17 range. He is only sacker. Good time for him to be free agent. Bucs won’t pay that much.
    I mean receivers are getting 15-17. Sack master defensive ends have alway been given most , next to qb.

  16. SB Says:

    I think NOS maybe right and Dalvin cook may fall to us after seeing his combine results. I was not overly impressed in fact Tim Tebow beat him in every single category except the 40

  17. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @SB why draft Cook when we can get McCaffrey, Howard, or Engram? xD

  18. SB Says:

    I agree Blake I’m all about some mccaffery

  19. Defense Rules Says:

    martinii, I’m with you … No reason in the world why Bucs can’t sign BOTH Gholston and Campbell. Defense begins up-front, and without an outstanding DLine Bucs defense will be toast. Gholston is ‘home-grown’ as you said, and his best yrs are ahead of him not behind. He’s worth $7 mil a yr (anything over that would be tough to justify). Campbell is definitely my preferred choice for a DE/DT FA, but not at $15 mil per yr ($10-12 mil could live with). I’d rather either try to sign someone less expensive (like Brandon Williams?) or grab a DT/DE high in the draft (like Brantley?). Bucs DLine isn’t 1 player away from being overpowering … we need to add at least 2 and possibly 3 DLine guys to really solidify this thing.

  20. Pa Privateer Says:

    We can afford to have both Campbell and Gholston. Gholston is still young and with help on the Dline he may turn out a lot more sacks. I would love to be able to have both and the Bucs could run all sorts of different Dline packages. Our rush defense would immediately be top of the league. It is a long season and having a good rotation for Dline would only improve our chances of reaching and winning in the playoffs.

  21. macabee Says:

    I’m with you too Martinii! Go Bucs!

  22. Mike Evans GOAT Says:

    Just watched Peppers presser and it was really annoying. Seems like a diva to me.

  23. WhatdaBUCisthis Says:

    Resign big Will. Sign Campbell or Poe. This line must be feared. I really hope they draft DE with the first pick also… In a pass Happy laughs if you can’t get to the QBs, you will lose period. I prefer Poe because he’s younger. But DAMN this line must be improved in a nasty way. I think Coach Smith gets the new toys this year.

  24. Dave Says:

    Campbell would be a great addition.
    Draft a DT too though

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

    What Buccaneer Princess ooops I’m a little early what Trubucfan22 said.

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

    Also like what Kevin said.

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

    Blake and SB any word on whether Fameis wants oj Mr. Unproductive or the weakling McCaffery??? Doubt it but but we all know who does want as teammate. That dude he talk with weekly. No need for me to say his name y’all do good a job bringing up his on every thread. Good job bros😉.

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

    And SB I’m trying to show patience with the whole Tebow comparing you’re doing. Out of respect for you I’m refraining from going inn on that kid.

  29. Pickgrin Says:

    “Joe doesn’t think the Bucs would sign both Gholston and Campbell”

    Why not – we’ve got Noah Spence, Jac Smith, HoJo and McDonald for cheap – and Ayers is only making $6M this year. We can afford the $12-$14M for Campbell along with GMCs $13 for at least the next 2 or 3 years.

    I would let Gholston test the market if he insists he is worth more than $5-$6M per on a multi year deal. Gholston ain’t better than Ayers – that’s for sure and Ayers is making $6M. Just sayin. Gholston is a solid run stopper but his established lack of pass rush productivity severely limits his earning capacity IMO. Testing the market will prove that.

  30. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Bro, SB stating the fact that Tebow out performed Dalvin athletically is no where near as disrespecting a young man by calling him a weakling, Just because you’re salty that he too out did your boy.

    You don’t bench press a football sir. McCaffrey can run, catch, cut, and make defenders miss with the best of them. Just the way it is, and I’m 100 percent positive that Jameis would be happy to have him.

    And as for O.J. Howards production, it don’t matter one bit, the offensive system he played him asked him to contribute as a blocker more frequently than a receiver. But when deployed on passing plays, he runs sharp routes, bust opens seems with his incredible speed for a man of his size, and he gashed legit defense for big gains almost every time his QB’s threw him the ball.

    Think about this, O.J. Howard would be neck and neck in a foot race with Dalvin Cook. And he outweighs the dude by 41 pounds. Tell me Jameis couldn’t use that.

  31. ndog Says:

    No to always injuried John Ross and no to Reggie Bush 2.0 Mccaffrey. So that leaves Cook, OJ, Davis, Mike Williams, or Taco I would be happy with right now.

  32. Buccaneer scotty Says:

    What do you care how much they pay anyone as long as we stay under the cap and can resign everyone we want to keep? Who are you or anyone to say what someone is worth?!! Gholston is worth what ever they give Him! He’s a young great player that we drafted who’s just starting to enter his prime!

  33. d-roca Says:

    The more i think about past comments of licht n dirk the more im starting to think they might take McCaffrey if he is available. Punt returner, kick returner, running back and slot receiver, and damn good at them all. Posted damn good numbers at the combine. N anyone dogging his bench press look up old numbers from past players. Its no biggie. Im on board. Theres a handful of players id love tho in round one, too bad we cant get em all. Go bucs

  34. Jeagan1999 Says:

    Sign Campbell and Poe and Mangold andDesean Jackson that’s about $40 – $45 million a year right there. Still leaves us significantly under the salary cap, but really addresses our most important needs. Then in the Draft, we round out RB, Safety and a few other smaller needs.

    Game on!

  35. SOEbuc Says:

    No to Cambell. 30 years old and will want a gigantic pile of cash. Try to get Barnett in the first. If Barnett isn’t around trade back and get Charles Harris. Sign Tony Jefferson. Spend the rest of the picks on offense. A safety or cornerback if the position is right.

  36. SOEbuc Says:

    ^Also sign Poe.^

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

    Barnett smallish and slow. H3ll no. If you’re gonna be small you better be fast at DE. As for the weakling him bring that concern me because it says he is not built to take NFL pounding. And like Ndog told you he is reggie bush 2.0. Flash in the pan man. Oj couldn’t out perform Engram in college so why would I want that lack of production on my football team considering my number 1 TE is emerging as a star in that league. Get real bro.

  38. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    If we get DJax and Campbell draft OJ then McCaffrey then, dl, ol, s wr

  39. Destinjohnny Says:

    What i don’t get was this year is the deepest year for dbs
    We should have taken Sheldon rankins last year. We could have gotten a db in the 2nd or 3 rd this year as good a vh3
    I think jason is an okay scout but I worry that he doesn’t get the big picture.