Red Flag On Chris Baker?

March 19th, 2017

New Buccaneer defensive tackle Chris Baker

‘Tis the season of optimism, when new, expensive blood arrives (usually) and the annual celebration of talent begins while playoff dreams get vivid.

Joe is not here to urinate upon these good feelings, but a little reality is important.

Defensive tackle Chris Baker, the Bucs’ big Day 1 signing from the Redskins, is an upgrade from Akeem Spence without question. So the Bucs win there. Spence moved on to Detroit, and swapping him for Baker was a Bucs-friendly deal.

However, Joe can’t ignore the red flag in the room. The Redskins didn’t want Baker back.

Baker himself talked about this Friday on SiriusXM NFL Radio.

“It was really hurtful learning that the Redskins didn’t really offer me a contract, being that I was one of their best defensive linemen on their team for the last couple of years and really worked my way up from the practice squad to being one of the best linemen,” Baker told Lance Meadow and Phil Savage on Late Hits. “And for them not to offer me was very hurtful, but I understand it’s a business and I’m very happy to move forward with the Buccaneers and I think I really have a bright future there.”

Baker turns 30 in October and he wasn’t exactly a household name in Tampa two weeks ago.

Joe has written countless times through the years that free agents, especially those who command modest salaries and are unwanted by their teams, represent a red flag. They’re a significant gamble.

(For those wondering, numerous reports claim the Redskins were, in fact, working to re-sign DeSean Jackson.)

Joe realizes loads of fans right now are saying, “But the Redskins are a hot mess and a bunch of morons?” To that, Joe points to back-to-back winning seasons for Washington and a good head coaching hire in 2014, when the Bucs’ hire was a disaster.

Like every Bucs fan, Joe is hoping Baker is better than Clinton McDonald and is the key to restoring the Bucs’ run defense. But Joe is a little nervous.

63 Responses to “Red Flag On Chris Baker?”

  1. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Redskins are a smoldering dumpster fire right now. The fact they didn’t want him back is positive thing.

  2. Kevinthepainterimagine Says:

    Wtf joe you had me worried. This is nothing. Washington just let three good players walk and are stupid enough to not give cousins a long term deal….c’mon

  3. SteelStudBuc Says:

    Considering the Redskins GM was getting wasted instead of doing his job… it’s no wonder they let these guys walk

  4. Pete Mitchell Says:

    The fact that they didn’t even offer him a low ball contract offer may be something to worry about.

    Can’t help but think of the old guy from the radio banging the “if you’re good they’ll find a way to keep you drum” that he borrowed from Mr. Brooks.

  5. Mojiska Says:

    They had no gm and a meddling terrible owner. Very poor organization. I mean they cant even get a deal with cousins done, lost pierre and d jax! Normally i agree, but right now they are the worst front office in the nfl.

  6. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    I placed a question on the Nick Folk thread. If he was all that why did the Jets let him go?

    ALL FA’s come with questions. Some are simply salary cap casualties. Some become expendable because a rookie comes in and outshines them…others have injury questions…and some are simply not worth it.

    Is this not true for EVERY acquistion whether FA or draft pick. After the first round the draft success rates generally fall by a factor of 1/2…that is to say that you have half the chance of getting a solid player in the 2nd than the 1st…half the chance that you had in the second when you get to the 3rd and after the 3rd you are pulling for a long shot.

    It will be the same as last year and every year…Grimes and Ayers worked out great….Sweezy did not. It’s the % of success we have with these acquistions…FA’s and draft picks that will determine our success. NO GM bats 1000%.

  7. Fire the glazers Says:

    I doubt that him NOT getting resigned by the foreskins had much to do with his talent and potential. I believe it had more to do with their GM disappearing into the vegas haze as he spiraled back into his former white powdered demons. The Washington brass was more concerned with the front office loss than an aging DLineman that could easily be replaced at the top of the draft.

  8. ElioT Says:

    Damn, this team still has many needs. Depth is still paper thin and how many draft picks can they really expect to make an impact.

    Still have a ton of money and when the injuries happen, what will be the answer?

    I’m nervous.

  9. Buccfan37 Says:

    Hate the Redskins. Love their turmoil. Liking their former players now Bucs.

  10. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    I think it’s just about Bakers age, or maybe they are looking to upgrade the way we did when we let Bennett walk. Oh, wait…

  11. CalBucsFan Says:

    Really? What, are you bored Joe? Red Flag? Oh yeah, that’s right, even you used the ?

  12. Wesley Says:

    I have a bad feeling about this signing.

  13. Bird Says:

    My buddy is a die hard redskin fan who is Pretty depressed right now. He feels the ship sinking in Washington and rebuild likely.
    He confirmed that baker was best dlineman hands down. Maybe most consistent player on entire defense. Going by his word as he doesn’t miss a second of anything redskins like me for the bucs. Plus. Not difficult to be better than Spence and McDonald.
    Plus some experts are claiming it’s the biggest steal in free agency. The guy is 320 – 340 range. . That’s the beef guy up the middle they need. Like “snacks” for the Giants

  14. The Buc Realist Says:

    Every free agent was not wanted or not wanted enough!!!!! that is how they became free agents!!!! nothing to see here!!!!

  15. DallasBuc Says:

    Red flags, plural.
    Nothing to see here. Licht is a genius. Move along.

  16. tnew Says:

    Bucs didn’t want Penn, Bennett, Talib, Blount or Barron..,,, Just to name a small few.

  17. McBuc Says:

    somtimes teams let good players go for “no good reason”. Seems like I have heard that somewhere.

  18. SOEbuc Says:

    Wasn’t that when they’re GM was stumbling around drunk like a 21 year old at Mardi Gras?

  19. chris bressler Says:

    Ok, the Redskins, who have had the worst dline in the last two years, decided not to pursue their best dlineman who would’ve signed for less in DC than in Tampa because why? Maybe because is just an average dlineman who was not the focal point for the offense. That was Smith, Kerrigan and Murphy. Baker is good, but he takes plays off, (Cooley has mentioned this several times in his film breakdown) and now he is 30. I’m glad the skins didn’t reach and sign another aging veteran (Garcon and Jackson). Seriously Garcon had Djax were good, but finally the skins have changed their ways and let the aging veterans walk and get bigger paydays elsewhere. I like the size and youth the skins have at WR now. Doctson is 6’3″ and Pryor is 6’4″ (Garcon is 6′ and Djax is 5’9″) and both play even bigger and run sub 4.4’s. This doesn’t sound like a front office that is making reckless moves. Nope, they simple will overpay anymore which reminds me if one extremely successful franchise…

  20. chris bressler Says:

    *will NOT overpay anymore

  21. R.O. Says:

    You can say that about every FA that signs with another team… Including your boy Nick Folk. Guarantee all things being equal in camp and Pre Season they keep RA. Why have to look for a new kicker every year if they keep Folk.


    @75, Man you crazy. Funny as fk.

  23. Buccaneer scotty Says:

    Bullspit story!

  24. gotbbucs Says:

    BRUCE ALLEN is now in charge of that franchise………that is all.

    They drug their best talent evaluator through the mud just in time to fire him once the rest of the leagues GM positions were filled, then they once again put the tag on the best QB they’ve had in 20 years and alienated him from the team, then they let they’re #1 and #2 WR walk without a fight and they let their best defensive lineman walk without even talking to him.

    You’re not good at this conspiracy theory thing Joe. The last two year were an outlier for that franchise, they are now back to full disfunction.

  25. NutterBuccer Says:

    We didn’t resign Michael Bennett years ago so let’s not get worked up about this. Redskins we’re focusing on their WR and QB and there lack of front office professionalism.

  26. Defense Rules Says:

    Agree with NutterBuccer. Wonder if Seattle fans said the same thing about Michael Bennett when they saw that the Bucs didn’t re-sign him. Or maybe they all thought ‘Hey, those Bucs are really dumb.’ In Baker’s case, Bucs got a solid DT with an excellent resume for a reasonable price. Same far as I’m concerned with Desean Jackson, JJ Wilcox and Nick Folk. Why stir the pot Joe when there’s nothing cooking? As Shakespeare would say ‘Much ado about nothing’.

  27. Destinjohnny Says:

    Bruce allen

  28. Poor Glennon Says:

    Garcon and D-Jax had huge price tags. They didn’t shell out 26M per for those guys. Then they didn’t even make Baker an offer…..that is pretty scary!!!! 6M per is peanuts!!!!special teamers and punters make 3M per.

  29. Kalind Says:

    Joe. I live up in DC. And to reassure you…allow me to say some names. Bruce Allen–resident toolbag. This guy is poison up here. The fans hate him. The coaches hate him. He’s paranoid and vindictive and as Buc fans well know, he’s a terrrrrible talent evaluator. Same same Danny Snyder.

    Scot McCloughan is the reason this team was halfway decent the last 2 years. He got all the credit. Brucey didn’t like that. So they tossed him on some trumped up charges or alcohol abuse. Followed by some moronic personnel moves. (Sans Terrelle Pryor..tat was QA better signing than an aging DJax…sheesh.)

    But don’t look at the skins throwing Baker away as evidence of anything other than they’re dumb. Remember they have a new DC here too. Maybe he doesn’t fit the schem.

  30. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I’m not sold on Chris Baker at all, and frankly I don’t believe he’ll be a starter. Not for long.

    Clearly he has emotional issues with the whole “rejection” thing. Mature adults just move on. They don’t whine about it.

    I mean, come on now…any player who ‘expects’ to spend an entire career in one place is in denial. While some guys do, the number is extremely low. They should all expect it at this point. That he didn’t means Chris Baker is not very smart and is out of touch with reality.

  31. BigMacAttack Says:

    Joe channeling his inner Rachel Maddow. Nice

  32. Frank Pillow Says:

    How’s, I live in DC and can tell you this guy is going to be missed. The local radio shows and print media have spent more time lamenting the loss of their best DL vs Jackson and/Garçon. True, 99.999% of coverage here is devoted to trashing Snyder and Sen. Macaca’s brother, worm-tongued Bruce Allen, over their handling of Cousins and the franchise. Also the Skins have a long legacy of treating their own FAs like garbage while wooing others. Baker is a player on the upswing, even at 30.

  33. Capt.Tim Says:

    Baker is the steal of free agency. He will be a terror.
    He is a disruptive Defensive tackle. Never had one of those next to McCoy

  34. tdtb2015 Says:

    This is as much as a red flag as is McCoy helping defenders off the ground after play is over.

    We should probably cut Baker and McCoy. lol

  35. MarcBucs88 Says:

    To me, the Redskins’ decision to let Baker reminds me of Mark Dominick letting Bennett walk back in 2013.

    Hopefully Baker turns strengthens my analogy by developing into a regular an All-pro DT (who earns a ring or two in the process!).


  36. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Red flag? So basically every free agent is a red flag?

    Baker is on record talking about how dysfunctional the redskin organization is. And how he wished things were more normal there. (This was while he was a redskin) I’m sure those statements had a little to do with the redskins decisions to offer him a contract. And while this poses a possible issue seeing that baker is a free talker and isn’t afraid to say what he thinks. What he says could hurt the image of the team. But if the bucs treat him right and aren’t a complete mess, then things should go fine. We shouldn’t be afraid of a player that is willing to speak his mind. I don’t see a red flag. It is also telling of his character that even though he was critical of the redskins organization, he was still loyal to them and wanted to continue his career there. So take that red flag and change it out with a gold star, imo.

  37. Trubucfan22 Says:

    Bonzai, not everyone is a socio path. Some people have feelings. Baker getting his feeling hurt after not being offered a contract is a normal human emotion. Maybe you should try to find one of those some time.

  38. Eric Says:


    Thank you. I was wondering what he was blabbering on about.

  39. 1patrick Says:

    Baker is going be good based on the surrounding cast of linemen. However, he’s a man beast on his own.

  40. MadMax Says:


    Welcome to Tampa Mr. Baker!!

  41. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Terrible article Joe. Forget what Washington has done the last few years. I’ve never seen or heard of some of the crap they are doing there right now. Daniel Snyder is an idiot. They focused on God knows what and not resigning guys the first couple of days. Baker can play and will pair up lovely with GMC.

    I normally like your articles but this one is trash.

  42. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Mature adults Bonz…come the F on bro.

    And watch his tape. Where I live we unfortunately get a lot of redskins games and he was always their best player on D. He kills it out there.

  43. Rod Munch Says:

    Baker is a 2nd tier player – it’s only those celebrating this signing as being a huge deal that are raising red flags, and it’s all based on their own hype. The Redskins had to let a lot of guys go, in fact – and many people don’t know this – D Jackson also played with the Redskins last year and he too was let go. Oh and just a reminder Bruce Allen and the other Gruden once let some defensive players go – Sapp and Lynch come to mind – in order to sign some old mediocre washed up offensive talents to big contracts. Lynch of course had multiple Pro Bowls left in him and Sapp would, playing out of position, go on to have a 10 sack season. Meanwhile Bruce Allen and this current Gruden resigned their 33-year old back-up TE to a 3yr $15mil contract.

    Not saying Baker is really a big deal or compare him to the Bucs greats – but when you mix Allen + Gruden you normally end up with some of the worst personnel moves in football.

  44. Buc2015 Says:

    Joe(s), your hate for this guy is strong. Relax, he is a baller by all accounts and will be a great complement to McCoy up front.

  45. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Steelstud you are wrong about him being wasted. The skins released that to make themselves look better. One of the DC reporter’s wrote an article 2 months before he was fired detailing how this would play out. He even suggested they would lie about him drinking again to save face.

    Daniel Snyder is the biggest pos in sports. He is losing hundreds of million each year, since they took his trademark rights to anything with the skins name on it. Not to mention, it is a derogatory name to Native Americans, I am part Cherokee, just to not give in to other people’s demands.

  46. DoNUTS Says:

    Baker is a 2nd tier player<<huh

    NFL starters with 700+ D snaps in'16 are not 2nd tier

    I dont agree with the premise that if Allen didnt make offer then there is a problem.

    silly season in full bloom.

  47. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    The REAL Red Flag:

    Chris Baker takes a lot of plays off and worries more about his ‘Swaggy’ dance than making plays.

  48. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I swear some of you need to learn to read. Accusing J0E of hating Baker is an overactive imagination. Just because he ‘hopes’, that doesn’t mean he ‘hates’.

    Dimwits, lol.

  49. DoNUTS Says:

    This team needs some swag…let him dance! #99 had swag.

  50. Buccfan37 Says:

    Who’s next to temper the enthusiasm of Baker becoming a Buc?

  51. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Only fake a__ fans wouldnt be excited to get a good DT for an average contract

  52. ptwalk Says:

    When we signed VJackson was he a red flag.

  53. Dave Says:

    Washington is dysfunctional. So is Joe.

  54. NCFlorIdiot Says:

    Well said St Pete!

  55. BradentonBuc Says:

    I personally see the Chris Baker signing as an equivalent to the McDonald signing a few years ago, albeit that McDonald showed up with hardware. At the price he was signed for, combined with his versality (DT’s should not be racking up sacks in a 3-4, yet he did), it would be a plus to add his talent to the line. As Joe has always pointed out, it is the edge rush. We have 3 quality linemen (McDonald, Baker, Gholston) and one superstar (GMC haters, get real) who can play both DT positions. Would love to see Jack Smith brought back at the right price, keep him off special teams for crying out loud. Depth is not paper thin at DT. The rest of the defense, linebacker and corner, could really use depth. How often can teams say they have 2 legit starters at DT and one of them will seemingly be a 2nd stringer. Now if Lavonte David/Kwon Alexander, or Hargreaves/Grimes goes down, whose gonna replace those guys? If GMC goes down, at least there is real depth

  56. Bill Says:

    Chris Baker is this years Robert Ayers. He’s a good/great player, but not elite. He’s a bit long in the tooth with a good bit left in the tank.

    It’s the same story. He’s not the headliner that Campbell is, or Vernon was last year, but he’s the next best thing and comes at half price (just like Ayers). That’s value. This is a smart signing.

  57. BradentonBuc Says:

    Also, for those wondering why this is even an article, Joe has connections to one of Tampa Bay’s most relevant sports mind in The Big Dog, who always preaches about the relevancy of good players not being let go by their organization. A valid point and one that is proven time and again

  58. tnew Says:

    Sapp was notorious to take plays off. He stated as much in interviews. But he also knew when to turn the motor on.

  59. PRBucFan Says:

    Ahahahaha really we are now worried what that joke of an FO in WASH did or did not do?

    MANY great players have passed from team to team throughout the years because of their previous teams letting them walk.

    Red flag is a reeeeeeeeeach lol

  60. PRBucFan Says:

    There’s a reason that FO has been trolled by the majority of the talking heads with credibility this offseason.

    Idiotic moves such as letting Baker walk for example lol.

  61. K2 Says:

    Joe, you do a great job, but obviously its hard to write 15 quality articles each day. Last year, it was attacks on “grandpa” Grimes. Warning us that he might be too old to play. I guess we’ll find out when Baker takes the field in September. Oh, by the way business relationships breakup all the time. Just like your girlfriend in high school saying she just wants to be friends.

  62. Nick2 Says:

    They didn’t want Deshaun Jackson back either. Any move by the Redskins is just boneheaded. Baker probably didn’t say hello to Sneider in the hallway one day that’s how the Redskins are run. An owner all hands on who doesn’t have a clue. At least Jerry Jones knows what he is doing. Sneider reminds me of Al Davis. LOL

  63. Mike Johnson Says:

    Play angry Mr. Baker. Show’em King Kong ain’t the only beast who can move
    the earth and kick A..