Licht: “It’s A Pass-Fail League”

January 16th, 2018

Jason Licht spoke today in St. Pete

UPDATED 10:51 – Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht talked to Joe and some local media types today at an East-West Shrine game practice in St. Petersburg about expectations, clarifying some of his comments in a recent newspaper article that had many fans slamming beers in anger last night.

Licht had talked to the Tampa Bay Times and was quoted yesterday saying, “The whole year, just the expectations were just, not set by us, it was just something I cringed at,” Licht said.

That read like Licht was saying the team didn’t have shared goals with fans, which at minimum was building on a 9-7 season in 2016. Licht specified today he primarily was talking about hopes for a high-octane offense from Day 1 with new pieces to integrate like DeSean Jackson, O.J. Howard and Chris Godwin.

 “Expectations were progress. I said that from the beginning. And obviously we didn’t; the record doesn’t show that we made progress, ” Licht said. “So it is. I mean, we failed to meet those expectations.

“When I was talking about ‘cringing,’ I was talking about how [we] make these moves, high-powered offense. When I said ‘cringe,’ I was mostly talking about, like I just said before, the immediate, come-out-of-the-gate-swingin’ [expectations], everything gelling immediately, when I knew that it was going to take some time.”

“At the end, 5-11, that’s not what we want, obviously. Disappointed, yeah, I used the world brutal.”

Licht responded to a question from Joe and reiterated that he and organization have the highest expectations consistently.

“Listen, expectations, expectations are always to be one of the best teams. Always to make it. They’re always that,” Licht said. “Always to be knocking on the door winning championships, ultimately winning championships.

“You never go into a season saying, ‘hey, we’re 8-8, we’re going to be happy.” You know, it doesn’t happen instantly. But expectations aren’t to be 5-11. It’s a pass-fail league.”

It was good to hear this from Licht, but hey, what was wrong with expecting the Bucs would come out firing with all their new toys — and their old toys like Cameron Brate and Mike Evans, with reliable Adam Humphries? Heck, Licht himself was on NFL Network last May telling the world Doug Martin looked as good as he’s every seen him. And Dirk Koetter made it clear the team’s 2016 offseason goal was many more explosive plays [keyword: “explosive”].

Expectations always should be embraced, though Robert Ayers saying Noah Spence a “15-sack guy” in May was out of hand.

For the record, Joe wrote in September — and in the summer — to expect chemistry issues with DeSean Jackson and Jameis Winston. And Joe wrote repeatedly to not expect anything from the Bucs running game if Doug Martin was allowed to carry the football.

Joe, however, firmly expected the Bucs to be better in the red zone with all those weapons. And that failure was a primary killer of the season.

46 Responses to “Licht: “It’s A Pass-Fail League””

  1. The Buc Realist Says:

    Joe says:
    “what was wrong with expecting the Bucs would come out firing with all their new toys”

    Because it was not “realistic”!!!!!!!!! and I told you this in the beginning!!!!!!!!!!
    OMG its the “Realist Repost”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The Buc Realist Says:
    August 3rd, 2017 at 8:43 am

    We need the defense to come out firing, until the offense can get their feet underneath them, due to all the new players in new positions!!!!! They have had quite the overhaul if you look at last year’s starting roster and compare it with the “projected” starting roster for this year!!!!!!!!!

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

  2. Eric Says:

    Glad he clarified.

    If the Jags can do it we should be able to. In year 4 of the latest rebuild.

  3. Bucn Enough Says:

    Did he not see the tone of the “casual training camp”…if so, then why did he not insist on a tougher training camp to make sure that Team Glazers loot was not going to be wasted while they “gel”…

    Licht is a book of excuses…

    He will be gone by this time next year anyway….

  4. Eric Says:

    Almost like Jason read yesterdays reaction to his cringe comments on…..

  5. Shedrick Anthony Says:

    Nice read glad he got to clear that up a bit. I still follow the Licht. When you lose leaders have to watch how they deliver everything, but his actions have been to continually improve this team. That pass rush was on him though and im sure he will address that.

  6. Lamarcus Says:


    You should be up and running away with the BUCS GM position.

  7. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    Jason Licht does realize he is a gm and poor one at that, he speaks like a flip flopping politician, explains why the bucs have no vision or plan from the top

  8. Dooshlarue Says:


    Joe the GM would have:

    Johnnie Foosball QB
    Roddy White WR
    Matt Forte RB

    : )

  9. AlteredEgo Says:

    Is that a vailed reference to Jameis

  10. Buddy Says:

    Pass-Fail huh?? Ok then you & Klueless Koetter have both FAILED!!!!

  11. Baker Mayfield Says:

    He sounds like a loser to me, why is he still here !

  12. Bucsfanman Says:

    I’m calling TOTAL B.S. on this!!! Um, hello Philly!
    Yea, the expectations were higher. We had one WR, and one RB the year previous year AND, it was supposed to be the proverbial “QB in his 3rd year” break-out.

  13. Negative Jeff Says:

    Classic case of the Glazers being cheap. So cheap they won’t even get’s rid of Lovie’s old and shi t ty coordinators. JW is fine, how could a new QB coach help him? Marpet is fine, he doesn’t need a mentor to help teach him the position. The secondary certainly does not need new coaching. Look how good VG looked when they demoted him to a position a FA usually plays?

    Postponing the inevitable here. At the very least should have fired the under performing assistants. I could have bought into that.

    No changes = cheap. That’s it. no other way to look at this .

  14. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The difference between hope and expectations is that with hope you have no real expectations. With expectations you usually don’t need hope.

    Last year I had high expectations for the Bucs….(a rarity for me)….I learned my lessons.

    We have seen significant expectations unmet with a couple of our division rivals….Expectations after holding a huge lead, the Falcons would win their first Superbowl…..what a bitter pill for their fans.

    And, this weekend…..NO blowing a late 4th Qtr lead with little time to none other than “backup” Buc killer Case Keenum.

    Unmet expectations indeed.

  15. SB Says:

    Is there anyone here that wouldn’t jump on the Jags +9 this weekend.

  16. Guzzie Says:

    Obviously no shame losing to Keenum anymore, he’s going to lead his team to the Super Bowl, what has Americas QB Lameis Winsnone doing for you?

  17. Cobraboy Says:

    I doubt Licht expected his defense to be the most pathetic in Bucs history, sans ’76.

    I don’t like it, but I halfway semi-understand why Koetter was kept. But the defensive staff? I can only assume the team knew that no coach of quality would take a job with an underachieving 5-11 head coach who barely escaped the axe and starts the offseason as the #1 Hot Seat Head Coach in the NFL.

  18. Hodad Says:

    The Glazers need to hire a guy like Coughlin to baby sit Licht.

  19. Bucsfanman Says:

    Guzzie comes out swinging!!!

  20. Buc believer Says:

    Licht the spin master! He knew he was in a world of ship and now he is trying to put cologne on! Whatever Licht! We know what you said.

  21. Lord Cornelius Says:

    The problem is the team regressed in scoring. If that was the expectations the fans should have had then f*ck this guy.

    I expected a learning curve but I also expected the team to be scoring more points regardless – especially by midpoint in the season. They scored less points with way more talent.

    The only real excuse is Winston being hurt – which is a pretty significant excuse – but even then – even when he was playing lights out the last month of the season – we weren’t scoring points.

    In the last 5 games of the season; Winston was at 67% completion, averaging 316 yards per game at 8.6 YPA with about a 2:1 TD to Turnover ratio. It’s insane that a QB could average those numbers and the team only average 20 PPG. But that’s what happens when you sh11t the bed every possession int he red zone as a play caller; or have dumb mental mistakes by O-lineman / other players in key moments along with missed kicks. Hell even the 31 points in New Orleans included a special teams TD so we really only scored 24.

    That type of passing efficiency should result in like 25-27+ PPG and with average defense/average running game we probably should have literally won all of those games lol.

    This is also why I can see the team having hope going into next year. If Winston plays like that we should be averaging at least 25+ PPG easily. It’s odd to move the ball that well and not put up points.

  22. SteveK Says:

    Guzzie, 😂 LOL!

    Lord Corn, I agree with your post. Koetter retained bc of #3’s strong finish. And, to overcome a lack of points we need a running game and edge rush.

  23. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Lord C
    while i would agree that Jameis was much sharper ,more accurrate overall,he had 5 int’s and 5 fumbles. The would be less than 1:1 TO ratio. Now the touchdown to
    INT ratio is good . Agree we need more TD’s ,lactually 24 points should give a good chance to win. Especially if your picking a TD every Quarter instead of playing from behind.

  24. Tom Says:

    Someone help me. I don’t know which organization sucks worse. The Bucs or the Rays.

  25. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    At last an excellent Realist repost!

    I’m a writer and so words have great meaning to me. There are excuses…and extenuating circumstances. Both can explain failures but only one is acceptable to me.

    EG….The Franchise QB had enough shoulder problems to mess up five or six games. The Franchise hope of an outside pass rush missed virtually the entire season. That is an acceptable reason for failure…an extenuating circumstance.

    I’ve read and heard from fans and team spokespeople that HK and expectations somehow affected the season. That may also be true but it is totally unacceptable…an EXCUSE!

    That’s what is happening now. Some of the Bucs failure can be laid at the feet of extenuating circumstances…some are just lame excuses.

    BTW All teams and athletes and people do this to some degree. The questions for Buc fans is how much of our failure is due to extenuating circumstances largely out of our control…and how many of the other failures were our own fault?

    IMHO…I can’t totally decide because of valid reasons and lame excuse competing for my attention. So I’m very sanguine about seeing what these guys can do for one more year.

  26. Rod Munch Says:

    This makes a lot more sense now as I didn’t see how Licht would lack the self awareness to come off so incredibly whining and flat out lie about team expectations. I believe Licht in what he’s saying here, it’s just like the fake news St Pete Times to pull a quote out of context in order to frame a story a certain way. Typical of these fake news frauds, the same frauds that tried to make a national story out of the Jameis speech at the elementary school.

  27. unbelievable Says:

    LOL I do actually feel less bad about losing to Keenum after seeing what he’s done this year.

    Just goes to show you how important a great defense is. (As if we didn’t already know that defense wins championships.)

    Eric Says:
    January 16th, 2018 at 11:11 am
    Almost like Jason read yesterdays reaction to his cringe comments on…..

    My thought exactly.

    I understand keeping most of the offensive staff (not the Qb coach though, wtf?), but you gotta make changes on the defensive side. HAVE TO.

  28. ndog Says:

    Guzzie Says:

    January 16th, 2018 at 11:55 am

    Obviously no shame losing to Keenum anymore, he’s going to lead his team to the Super Bowl, what has Americas QB Lameis Winsnone doing for you?

    But Guzzie he threw a pick in the game isn’t the entire team supposed to fall apart at that point like ours does according to you and all your fellow Jameis haters? According to you all the stats and good plays in the world don’t matter if you turn the ball over. So please explain oh wise one why the Vikings D did not just crumble the second that pick was caught by the Saints? Oh thats right cause they actually have a defense, who would have guessed that a team with a defense is good?

  29. The Buc Realist Says:


    With all the talk of failure, blame, scapegoats, answers, hope and expectations, all these words can be traced back to one thing perspective!!!!!! Where The Bucs so incredible talented that it is a total failure?????? Or were the Bucs finally have young talent and had to gamble in area’s??????? Some blame the GM for ignoring RB and pass rush, even though he drafted a RB and bought a free-agent DT and drafted a DT!!!!!!!!

    The talent is young and is just building and I would like it to continue!!!!!! I don’t have a playoffs or fire everyone expectations because the team was so devoid from the dominik years and the first loser lovie year when he really had the juice!!!!!!!

    With the coaching staff in this regime we get to see stability with the roster, so we can really see what we have!!!!! What is improving!!!!!! you cannot tell when you shuffle the deck too often!!!!!! That is how dominik was given pass after pass!!!!!!! That and he was the biggest draft for NEED GM I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Everyone keeps saying look at the defense of the team left in the playoffs!!!! And the Buc Realist says look at all their drafts the last 4-5 years and see the commitment to their Defensive Roster!!!!!!!!! It could just be sheep, that they have placed the talent on the offense and now it just needs to bloom!!!!!!! Now they will overhaul the defense to get a dynamic team together that can compete in this division!!!!!!!!!!!

    I also know that Joe has been questioning NFL GM Licht’s team philosophy!!!!!! And I wonder were where that same question was when talk show dominik was pretending to be GM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Because I ask that multiple times each offseaon!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    GO Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!

  30. jeff Says:

    hes not impressive looking man he is fat dombo looking and to me doesn’t command respect. Bucs need a splash and I am not talking about fat boy jumping in his pool

  31. jeff Says:

    Bye the way any idiot can draft scouts do all the evaluating u just have to pick whats there common man get real

  32. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    SB, 100% on the +9….already cleaned up on their o/u win total for the year and you don’t know me from adam but, didnt place bet on this, but told my short term investor in October that jags would be in the super bowl for the AFC, he looked at me like I was crazy.. they have great defense and a run game 2 things to win in cold weather….never said nor thought they would win super bowl just thought they would rep AFC… issue now though is giving up that many points last week, they have had 2-3 games like that during year, seahawks was one and 49ers which i compared to like when the bucs were great on D back in 2002 and got blown out a few times……

  33. Defense Rules Says:

    @Jason Licht … “When I said ‘cringe,’ I was mostly talking about, like I just said before, the immediate, come-out-of-the-gate-swingin’ [expectations], everything gelling immediately, when I knew that it was going to take some time.”

    Kinda looks like double-speak to me. He expected an “immediate, come-out-of-the-gate-swingin’ offense, BUT … he “knew that it was going to take some time.” Uhh newsflash Jason, can’t have it both ways. Especially with no REAL OLine upgrades, no real DLine upgrades and minimal Secondary upgrades. Well, unless you consider his ‘expectation’ that Sweezy would ball right away after sitting out a year with a bad back to be realistic.

    Licht basically sat out free agency after bringing DJax onboard for the offense. He added Fatty Baker AFTER all the real DT talent was already spoken for, then added nothing to fix the dearth of DEs on our DLine (oops forgot, he re-signed one of our own … Gholston … so I guess that was his major ‘fix’). Added JJ Wilcox AFTER several really good safeties went to other teams, then proceeded to trade him for next to nothing after he ‘upgraded’ to TJ Ward (won’t ask how that worked out). He did sign McClain (who had earlier played in Atlanta & was sitting at home when Licht called, probably after much pleading by Mike Smith). To Licht’s credit, he did throw a bone to the defense by using the 50th pick to draft Evans & 107th pick for Beckwith last year. Yup, expectations sure are tricky.

  34. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    Defense Rules right on, and I understand Beckwith is probably going to be a really good player, but it is a pick the bucs didnt need, when everyone is screaming edge rushers and RB, this is a 2LB league at the most because of being pass heavy and most teams are playing with 5-6 DBS at times and based on different defenses that can change I know, where a guy like Mark Baron is vital int odays pass happy league where he can come down play the run and defend the underneath, but licht gave him away because lovie is lovie….sux being a bucs fan esp looking at some of the many intelligent posters on here who watch college football and the bucs and can SEE the glaring weaknesses that are never addressed

  35. Duke Says:


    Case k only had 7 ints for the yr it’s not like he’s a QB who you have to go into a game thinking about spotting the opposition a couple possessions. IOW the defense isn’t as conservative because he doesn’t toss ints often.

  36. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    We have to be careful not to conflate a possible weakness in one area for Licht with another.

    IE….He may be horrible at PR but it doesn’t mean he’s also bad at drafting…the two are separate issues. Perhaps the Bucs are lacking in the area of a good team spokesperson near the top. Koetter is not exactly scintillating either but he is pretty dang honest and straightforward which I like a lot more than Licht’s b s.

    We all agree fix the DL…fix the running game which starts with the OL and requires at least one more NFL level RB.

    Our ST’s were just awful last year. I hope they fix that! Perhaps a new ST coach?

    And we absolutely need to upgrade our PRO scouting dept…College scouting has done very well IMHO with both draft picks and UDFA’s. But our pro FA’s…can you say Swaggy…how did he get here? His personality and work ethic and practice habits were reported in DC…probably why they let him walk…what kind of scouts over look all of that?

  37. Mike Johnson Says:

    Red Zone or not..The Bucs scored enough points to win games in this league. They left 5 perhaps even 6 games on the field because they could not play Defense. Easily winnable games. Bucs need to get a proven Defensive consultant like the Jags did with Coughlin who knows How to build a Defense. Don’t tell me Mike Smith knows defense. Hell, he can’t even set up his defensive linemen to assist others to get sacks! You’d better build a Defense Tampa Bay. if you don’t? Expect to keep losing close games.

  38. ndog Says:

    Duke did you ever think that maybe the QB has to take more chances cause he is always playing from behind cause our defense cant stop anybody?

  39. Duke Says:


    Oh yeah, JW has to. I was talking about CK.

  40. Duke Says:


    If we’re talking JW , the lack of a running game puts way more importance on passing to move the ball. Defensive coordinator’ s have a single phase of the game to defend. That’s why JW’s performance this year is more impressive.

  41. destinjohnny Says:

    you cant win at any level of footie with awful lines.
    you would have to say that our two lines were the worst combination of the two in the NFL.
    I am noy saying Jason cant scout, he is average he just does not get the concept of building a roster.

  42. jeff Says:

    Most nfl teams get there scouting from companys . they do not scout anything

  43. BucEmUp Says:

    Yeah Doug Martin looked as good as he ever has since his rookie year, that because he’s practicing against Mike Smith’s defense . Imagine if our offense practiced against a real defensive coach every week…THE ENTIRE TEAM WOULD GET BETTER.

    But that’s now how they do things here in Tampa.

  44. JonBuc Says:

    Licht’s Out should really go back in hiding…his latest round with the media has been moronic at best. I’m sure Joe will get to it ( or not )…but he claimed “Doug Martin was never the same in 2017”. Really?! Really?! You had an out card with his bloated contract yet did NOTHING. Kept him at full pay/price. Brought in no other running back other than Jeremey McDeerKnuckles. His list of alibis sure is long. With unlimited job security…he can afford to be foolhardy.

  45. Rod Munch Says:

    You guys are missing the point, the fake news St Pete Times framed the story to give a false impression of what Licht was talking about – since the St Pete Times does this all the time there is no reason not to believe what Licht is saying here as it’s much more in line with what he’s always said. The fake news garbage the Times put out yesterday was so out of whack with anything I’ve ever heard from Licht I said it should be a fireable offense if it was true – and of course it wasn’t true, it was just more fake news. Knowing the fake news Times changed the context of the story it’s hard to take anything he said in that story as being real. I’ll stick to letting Joe give us the details – seriously, even if I don’t agree with Joe on all his points I really don’t recall the Joe’s posting blatant fake news just to get some hits.

  46. Nick2 Says:

    Noah Spence who??? Our whole defensive line needs to be gutted McCoy included.Trade him. I love the guy but there is not much of a place for a nice guy on the defensive line. They are all mean and nasty or nice and soft. We are nice and soft.