Bucs Primed To Save A Roster Spot

May 21st, 2017

Potential Savior

UPDATED 1:29 p.m. – In part, Joe believes Ryan Fitzpatrick signing a one-year, $3-million-plus-incentives contract with Tampa Bay on Friday was about saving a treasured roster spot.

For the past two years, the Bucs burned a seat on their 53-man roster — one that could have gone to a legitimate receiver — on a No. 3 quarterback, Ryan Griffin.

Some consider investing in a No. 2 quarterback to be pure luxury. That could be debated all day, but there’s little argument that a No. 3 QB is a tiny step above a roster waste in most circumstances.

Take Griffin. Nice guy. Maybe he’s the real deal. Maybe not. The 27-year-old hasn’t taken a regular-season snap.

But the Bucs watched him develop for two seasons before going shopping for Fitzpatrick. What does that say?

Joe sees the threesome at QB (Jameis included) as a perfect setup for the Bucs to carry two QBs on the roster and stick one on the practice squad. Or they could bring back recently-waived Sean Renfree to the practice squad in September. He was with Koetter in Atlanta.

You heard Koetter talk about “cheatin’ danger” earlier this month on SiriusXM NFL Radio. Koetter explained the Bucs survived running with one less linebacker last season because retiring Daryl Smith could play all three LB positions and was durable.

That won’t happen in 2017. Smith is gone and the Bucs plan to have second-year man Devonte Bond (on IR all last season) and now-injured rookie Kendall Beckwith filling those big shoes.

So the Bucs need to free up a roster spot for the extra linebacker somewhere.

There’s also a lot of misguided fans who think the Bucs will carry a fifth running back starting in Week 4 of the regular season. You know, that’s when Doug Martin is available to return. If that long shot happens, Martin could then be a backup running back who doesn’t play special teams. And that would create further need to eliminate the nearly useless No. 3 QB slot, if it’s even still in the mix.

Joe will make a prediction. The Bucs go with two QBs to start the season. It just makes too much sense.

28 Responses to “Bucs Primed To Save A Roster Spot”

  1. Brett Says:

    It wouldn’t shock me to see them keep two placekickers.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    @ Brett

    Stranger things have happened……they could keep Aguayo for kickoffs….perhaps extra points.

    But, my bet would be on an additional WR…..one that is a special teams player.

    I would not, like Joe, bet against 3 QBs…..there was really no reason to keep Griffin on the roster for two years only to cut him now. I realize he was there in case there was a Glennon trade…..but he was a luxury.

    I certainly think it would be better to go with two on the active roster & one on the practice squad.

  3. The Buc Realist Says:


    “I would not, like Joe, bet against 3 QBs”

    you might want to rethink that, you ask why??? Cause The Buc Realist said so!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Its The Realist Repost!!!!!!!!!!

    The Buc Realist Says:
    May 19th, 2017 at 11:16 am
    The Bucs tried to get Nick Foles as a backup, but I think they got a better backup in Ryan Fitzpatrick!!!!!!!!

    Do not be surprised when this team only carries 2 QB’s!!!!!!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Hmmmm…I thought they cut/waived Renfree the same day they signed Fitzpatrick to stay at 90.

  5. JOEinPHX Says:

    Joe sees the foursome at QB (Jameis included) as a perfect setup for the Bucs to carry two QBs on the roster, stick one on the practice squad, and wave goodbye to the other……..

    You need to pay closer attention JBF. Renfree was released on the 19th.

  6. Fred E. Bucs Says:

    I’ll say it again. Charles Sims is prime trade bait after Martin comes back. Last year of rookie contract, hasn’t produced enough. If Sims has a lights-out month before that, they will carry five RBs. Some misguided people might call that misguided…Joe thought about it and rethought the idea…

    First, if Sims isn’t a big contributor by Week 4, then he’ll have no trade value beyond a 7th-round pick at most. If he is a contributor, he won’t be traded–Joe

    Or consider this. It may be no factor if the (knock on wood) Bucs lost one RB before then. Someone else is going to need a RB at Week 4, and they may will be willing to give up a decent pick (maybe 4th) if they are desperate enough.

    If the Bucs somehow renew Sims contract before then, then I’ll change my thoughts.

  7. Casual Observer Says:

    I like 2 QBs. We need a more useful roster spot. But that means the Bucs have given up on Griffin. He will be snapped up. Two years “investment” gone.

  8. biff barker Says:

    We are a long, long way from setting the final roster, camp and roster cuts always determine the last 4-5 spots.

  9. R.O. Says:

    I’ll bet we still keep 3 QBs. Roster spot save will be no FB.

  10. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Fred, NFL trades mid season are very rare. I also highly doubt anyone out there will be chomping at the bit to get Sims. Maybe a team that loses 3 RBs to injury would be interested. Both of those scenarios are highly doubtful.

  11. Tnew Says:

    I wouldn’t carry a fifth rb, a 3rd qb and there is no way 2 kickers, unless aguayo becomes a master of the mortar kick and is forcing fair catches inside the 20 on kickoffs. Roster spots are too valuable Can’t wait for camp to start

  12. Kstoges Says:

    My boy chuck Simms will have a big year count on it he’s explosive and can block but needs work hitting the hole hard which is teachable he’ll be fine he’s a great utility player for now and can Develop into much more honestly

  13. destinjohnny Says:

    should have traded up for a backup qb!

  14. James Walker Says:

    Was Fitzpatrick the guy who threw 6 INTs in one game?

  15. Defense Rules Says:

    Agree with Biff that we’re a ‘long, long way from setting the final roster’ but … it sure is fun to speculate. When I look at our potential 53-man roster, can’t see us keeping 3 QBs, 5 RBs or 2 Kickers. Here’s why …

    o Offense: total of 26 kept … 2 QB, 4 RB, 1 FB, 4 TE, 6 WR, 9 OLine.
    o Special teams: total of 3 kept … 1 Kicker, 1 Punter, 1 Long-snapper
    o Defense: total of 24 kept … 4 DT, 6 DE, 5 LB, 5 CB, 4 Safeties

    Koetter may opt to eliminate the FB & continue to use Stocker in that role. If he did, the position saved would probably go to the defense (add either a LB or CB for greater flexibility).

    May opt to go with 5 WR, but I seriously doubt it at this point after our injury experiences last year. If he did though, again, the defense would probably get beefed up as a result.

    As far as Doug Martin’s situation, Bucs are a long way right now from having to worry about what to do in the 4th week of the season. Lots will change between now and then (injuries, ineffective players, etc). No need to prematurely tie their hands at this point.

    As far as the QBs go, Fitzpatrick obviously has a leg up on winning the backup competition. It looks to me like Ryan Griffin would still be eligible to be on the Bucs practice squad under the new rules, but not 100% certain. Our other QB on the roster, Sefo Liufau, is just a rookie so he’s surely eligible.

  16. RayJameisStadium Says:

    Sims is Bye Bye when Doug comes back.

    Rodgers, Barber and McNichols are the RB committee for 2017 qtrs 1 -3.

    Martin will sign a Sweezy contract with cut pay and incentives. Koetter will use Martin and Fitz in the 4th qtr to close out games.

    Jameis and company will only need 3 qtrs. to blow out teams this season.

    Our top ten defense will be icing in the cake.

    One more prediction here. When we meet Mr. Deflated and Coach BillyCheat in the Super Bowl HBO’s film crew will receive a boat load of cash for all the unused footage of the Bucs. But, we will be the beginning of the end of the Patriot dynasty. There is a new sheriff in town!

    Fire Them Cannons!!!

    ****Caution**** reading comments from The Bucs Realist may cause you to start writing predictions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. BucEmUp Says:

    If Martin is still on the team come week 4 you actually believe he will be a backup???

    Dude wake up have a coffee….something

  18. First Down Tampa Bay Says:


    Exactly. If Martin is still on the team by week four (which is very likely), then he will most certainly be the starter. No reason to take on his extra roster spot in order to keep a backup RB that doesn’t play special teams.

  19. macabee Says:

    In case nobody has noticed, the Bucs are experimenting with the fullback position again. Got two on the roster now.

  20. Casual Observer Says:

    Practice squad members are not protected.

  21. First Down Tampa Bay Says:


    I like that. Gotta love a Bulldozer running in front of your RB.

  22. Pickgrin Says:

    QB – 2
    WR – 6
    RB – 4
    TE – 4
    OL – 10

    DL – 10
    LB – 5
    CB – 5
    S – 4

    K – 1
    P – 1
    LS – 1

  23. Casual Observer Says:

    Good prediction. Except I think CB – 6. DL -9.

  24. Pickgrin Says:

    We have a # of injury prone players at DL. Many are starters. (Ayers, McCoy, McDonald, Jac Smith, Spence??). I think we are going to need extra bodies up front to get through this season.

    And aside from that – just at a glance and prior to TC – I don’t see a 6th CB on the current roster worth keeping beyond Grimes, VH3, Hey Jude, Elliot and Josh Robinson. We are not exactly flush with CB depth this year…

  25. Defense Rules Says:

    Pickgrin … Ryan Smith is pretty highly thought of it sounds like, and should be a keeper as a CB … I think Elliott will be odd-man-out personally (unless Bucs go with 6 CBs). Agree with you on the DLine keeping 10, especially after how they were decimated last year by injuries (plus Smitty loves to rotate a bunch for different situations & to keep DLinemen fresh). Can’t see keeping 10 on the OLine though (they kept 9 on last year’s roster plus JR Sweezy on PUP). In the place of that 10th OLineman, Bucs MAY keep a FB or alternately keep a 6th LB or CB for insurance. Other than those minor differences, you & I seem to have pretty much the same vision of what the 2017 Bucs roster will look like. Only time will tell though.

  26. Pickgrin Says:

    DR – I forgot about Ryan Smith – and they oddly have him listed as “DB” on the Bucs official roster instead of “S” or “CB” as every other DB on the roster is listed so I simply overlooked him when scanning all the names. Sorry Ryan – Out of sight, out mind apparently – guess you better do something about that this year so fans will remember you for something other than crappy KO returner… LOL

    But seriously… No seriously do something Ryan Smith. But seriously I know they like R. Smith’s speed and ball skills (supposedly) and said he was rated higher than the 4th rd where he was picked on the Bucs big board despite coming from a small school. So I can’t see them giving up on him after only 1 year and a position change. Yea – Elliot likely to the PS unless they keep 6 CBs or unless/until another CB gets hurt

  27. RustyRhinos Says:

    Yes, Yes. Before we get all warm and fuzzy with roster projections of who will and who will not be available on our roster. Mr. Fitzpatrick needs to make walking on water type improvements to his own QB play, way way before he should get the coveted JoeBucsFan “Potential Savior” transitional tag. According to a review of Mr. Fitzpatrick by PFF of Mr. Fitzpatrick’s 6 Interception game week 3 of the 2016 season.

    “What’s truly remarkable about Fitzpatrick’s performance is that it wasn’t a product of overwhelming pressure. Fitzpatrick was pressured on just 10 of 47 dropbacks, which was one of the lowest rates in the league this week. Only the Broncos’ Trevor Siemian and the Giants’ Eli Manning were pressured less often than the 21.3 percent of dropbacks that Fitzpatrick felt heat on, and he was actually a little better when he was pressured than when he was just allowed to implode all by his own from a clean pocket.”

    If this “savior” of a FA QB implodes all on his own from a clean pocket how will he do with pressure the likes of which Mr. Winston seen every play last season. Yes Mr. Fitzpatrick has played a long time in the NFL with lots of yards TD’ & INT’s. Yet how many wins in a season? How many division championships? How many playoff wins or games he has played in?

    05-06 Stl 3-GS 1 season of 8-8 0 playoff games
    07-08 Cin 12-GS 0 playoff games
    09-12 Buf 53-GS 0 playoff games no winning record
    2013 Ten 9-GS 0 playoff games
    2014 Hou 12-GS 9-7 team 0 playoff games
    15-16 NYJ 27-GS 10-6 team(15) 0 playoff games
    With eleven seasons under this “saviors” helmet you would think he would have had more than 3 .500 or better seasons. But no only 3. Save a Mr. Fitzpatrick roster spot? Why again do we want to save this guy a spot on the roster? Just what again might this Journeyman QB help Mr. Winston get better at? Wins? Leadership? Or something else I am missing?
    Go Bucs!

  28. Brandon Says:

    If we stash a QB on the practice squad, i wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if it was the rookie QB from Colorado. The guy has a great thick build for a QB, can move a little (like a big Freeman-type), has a pretty decent arm, and is tough as nails. Sefo Liufau may seem like a longshot to make the roster, but physically, he’s quite a bit of an upgrade over Renfree and Griffin…. plus, he’s got that upside that neither of them do.