Tempered Expectations

January 25th, 2018

Realistic chance.

The grim reality is setting in.

Not trying to freak Bucs fans out, but by the day Joe is growing more resigned to the fact the Bucs will miss out on both stud college players the team desperately needs in order to turn around a 5-11 mess.

Yes, Joe knows the Super Bowl has yet to be played, knows it is still January, knows a lot can change between now and the draft in late April.

A lot.

Thus far, two players in April’s draft are head and shoulders above the rest, just like Mike Mayock told Joe last week, and the Bucs need one of them. That would be Penn State running back Saquan Barkley and North Carolina State defensive end Bradley Chubb.

Even helmet head Mel Kiper is of the mind that Barkley and Chubb are one-two as far as talents in the draft.

And even if there were an early run on quarterbacks, with Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht on the clock picking at No. 7, it is starting to look more and more doubtful Barkley or Chubb will be there.

That is, unless Licht goes bold and trades up with Cleveland for their No. 4 pick.

More and more Joe is eyeing Marcus Davenport, who Kiper currently has rated as the No. 15 overall talent in the draft.

60 Responses to “Tempered Expectations”

  1. AC Says:

    NO NO NO To Marcus Davenport.. i have been watching the senior bowl practices and this guy is nothing special at all. He is more of a project and we just dont have the time down here in Tampa to wait on production from the DL. If it ain’t Chubb its a Dub!! Chubb or Arden Key anyone else at DE is not worth it where we are selecting at the moment.

  2. AC Says:

    and not to mention our coaches havent been doing so well developing players. I do not have the faith in this coaching staff to turn this kid into the monster he might be able to become.

  3. TheTruth Says:

    So they have not developed Alexander,Beckwith, Godwin Howard ,Justin Evans ?

  4. Jason Says:

    Key isn’t worth a top ten pick AC.

  5. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We cannot gamble with the pick……we have needs at DB & Oline also….(but Licht & Koetter won’t recognize the Oline needs probably because needs elsewhere are greater)

    If Chubb & Barkley are gone at 7, we need to take Nelson or Minkah or trade down if we can.

    There would not be any analyst that would question those picks for us.

  6. The Buc Realist Says:

    We need a poll Joe!!!!!! Would we want a project at DE like Davenport or take the big Guard at #7 and grab the best RB in the bottom first top second round and have the best offense in the division??????????

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

  7. OrlandoJoe Says:

    Nelson and Barkley will be the only players that could make an immediate impact.

  8. Bird Says:

    Yah. We win a stupid meaningless game at end of year. Stupid.

    And please don’t say it gives momentum into next season cause look at the other 15 games they played last year.

    El stinko

  9. LJS4th Says:

    How does that meaningless win against the Saints look now? The Bucs can take a victory and make it a Loss!!! Idiots!!!

  10. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “Not trying to freak Bucs fans out, but by the day Joe is growing more resigned to the fact the Bucs will miss out on both stud college players the team desperately needs in order to turn around a 5-11 mess.”

    Joe, after the way last year’s draft played out, you should know how unpredictable things can be. And I promise you, this 5-11 “mess” will be turned around.

    I realize this is the time of the year where fans that are not playing in the superbowl dwell on nothing but negatives, but come on, people. Things are NOT as bad as you think.

  11. tmaxcon Says:

    Only expectations bucfans should have is anotger year in the basement and another striking out in free agency. It’s a bucs life. Time to accept reality

  12. miken Says:

    Just glad we beat the saints so we could save dirk and jason for one more incompatant year

  13. DR FEELGOOD Says:

    You don’t reach and draft for need. We have plenty of needs. Realistically, Chubb and Barkey will be gone. If either is there, no brainer. However, do NOT reach for a DE when we can have either Quentin Nelson or Minkah Fitzpatrick. Either of them are likely All Pros very early in their careers and both fill needs. Without reaching. We can get an excellent RB in round 3 and, with good scouting, and edge rusher in the early second round. Joe, you’ve written many times about second round DEs the Bucs have passed on. GO BUCS!!!!

  14. Wausa Says:

    I agree Davenport is a project and does not look like a three down lineman at this point. My guess is he falls to late first early second by the time the draft occurs.
    At least one of these guys will be available when the 7th selection is up and anyone of them will immediately make the Bucs a better football team:

    Chubb DE NC State
    Barkley RB Penn State
    Fitzpatrick DB Alabama
    James DB Florida State
    Nelson OG Notre Dame

  15. gotbbucs Says:

    Let’s go. I’m eager to hear your spin on the McCoy story on profootballtalk where he basically admits that he’s a piss poor leader.
    It’s the off-season, so here we go again with the “I need to be better” BS from Gerald McCoy.

  16. Defense Rules Says:

    Golly Joe, free agency is still over a month away & Debbie Downer is penning statements like “The grim reality is setting in.” Perk up, there’s ALWAYS H-O-P-E. Actually, that’s just about all Bucs’ fans have … H-O-P-E.

    As in “I H-O-P-E Jason Licht finally figures out that the real engine of the Bucs’ offense is the OLine and the real engine of the Bucs’ defense is the DLine. FIX THE TRENCHES Jason.

  17. James Says:

    Re trading up: however good Chubb is, the Bucs are not a player away. They need multiple players at multiple positions and should not be trading away draft picks.

    Re Davenport: however much potential he may have, Licht and Koetter are in last chance saloon and do not have the luxury of taking fliers on players. They need a slam dunk in this draft. At #7 you should be drafting a perennial Pro-Bowler, and, ideally, a day one starter.

  18. Not there yet Says:

    So they have not developed Alexander,Beckwith, Godwin Howard ,Justin Evans ?

    Lol you think oj Howard has to be developed? You think these guys listed here now have some skillet they didn’t have before becoming a buc. You don’t develop day one starters, they come into training camp and prove they know your system and can do what you ask and you give them knowledge on the way. All those guys you listed are easy and would be who they are no matter where they went

    you get credit for developing hmmm Keith Tandy which took forever, Joe dirt, Adam Humphries the lesser talent, offensive lineman are developed but still don’t do much without playing time. Ali Marpet want developed, licht identified a day one starter who was a stud

    Just my opinion not calling anyone out

  19. Etzel Says:

    Idk why we don’t consider Minkah a stud at a position we need…

  20. Destinjohnny Says:

    Way to beat the Saints

  21. AlteredEgo Says:

    Calm down Joe…….only 6 players will be taken ahead of the Bucs…….even if the sit tight and pick at 7……..there will be PLENTY of talent especially considering all the talent holes in the starting line up…….

  22. JonBuc Says:

    I agree with Bird et. al who felt the season finale was a “costly win”. Moving down from 5 to 7…and perhaps more importantly above both Denver and the Jets (who are qb needy teams) just might have huge consequences. Trade offers will be less likely with teams no longer trying to trade with the Bucs in order to leap frog teams looking to draft a qb.

  23. bucballbaby84 Says:

    Heres one thjng we do know. When all is said and this season is over josh mcdaniels becomes the HC in Indi. They most surely are going to draft and offensive lineman to help protect the injury riddled Andrew Luck. So thats one team out of the top 7. That wont be drafting either and 4 of the teams need a qb for now and future. Our chances of getting one is easy. Most likely chubb will drop to us and stick carrier nation will rejoice like it did last year! Go bucs!

  24. 813bucboi Says:

    Buccaneer Bonzai Says:
    January 25th, 2018 at 8:11 am
    And I promise you, this 5-11 “mess” will be turned around.
    Things are NOT as bad as you think.

    how do you know it will get turned around?….you have a crystal ball?….as ira pointed out earlier, the last time dirk and smitty were in this position they shat the bed again after they finished 4-12….they were both canned together….that same situation is playing out now….

    things are not that bad….BS….have you watched the games?

    offense only scores 20.9points per game….regressed from last year and are below average in scoring….

    defense ranked 32nd…cant develop a CB or DE….

    ST sucks…..

    how are things not that bad?….because we won our last game that ultimately knocked us out of a top 5 pick which reduced our chances of getting a special DE that we so desperately need?…..C’MON MAN….GTFOH…..things are horrible right now…..GO BUCS!!!!

  25. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Jesus calm down Joe lol. The draft isn’t an exact science. It’s almost guaranteed that another DE or RB from this class outperforms one or both of these guys. Look at Fournette vs Hunt for example. Hell the year we got Donavon Smith I think a few OT went in r1 above him and all sucked – primarily Flowers. I remember when Eric Fisher and Luke Joekal went 1 n 2 and both struggled. Look at the top WRs drafted last year .. I’d rather have Godwin right now than Mike Williams / Cory Davis (although those guys may end up really good).

  26. doctor_berto Says:

    Dude has been getting worked at senior bowl so thats a no from me unless he drops to second round

  27. GhostofSchiano Says:

    if we take the best available at 7 then we can get Nelson, at least fix something on this ramshackle team. It starts upfront, fix the trenches.

  28. Pa Privateer Says:

    Don’t forget, there are always players who were buried on a depth chart or poorly coached that become elite players every year. Our scouts and GM just have to find them.

    Since it is very early in the draft evaluation process and we have not been exposed to most of the players, I am going to not cry the sky is falling yet.

    I am also going to say, if you can’t get the once in a generation DE, get the stud DT that will help DEs look better. I vote DT Vita Vea as of now.

  29. bucballbaby84 Says:

    I think defensive end is the biggest need on this team.

  30. Pa Privateer Says:

    @ LORD C

    I completely agree. No one on JBF was slamming the table with their fists about Kwon or Beckwith being superior talent to other LBs, yet they are studs found in the 3rd and 4th rounds.

    I believe Licht will score some talent this offseason. Don’t forget his record with UDFAs is pretty darn good.

  31. GhostofSchiano Says:

    Round 1 Nelson Round 2 Crosby or Rankin. Get the O-line fixed. protect Jameis and create running lanes.

  32. Bucsfan951 Says:

    Tmaxi: did ever make that phone call yet?

  33. Buc believer Says:

    Yeah but we won a meaningless game (if you count falling three draft positions meaningless) so we have the right coaching staff in place and just need to sing Kumbaya and work a tiny bit harder right Koetter? Or maybe your training camp was to tough last year and we need to make it a lot easier. And Licht we do still need a kicker so how about taking one in the FIRST round this year instead of the second??? ( in case any fan doesn’t know the above message is called EXTREME sarcasm)

  34. sj_bucsfan Says:

    Looks like what I am about to comment on has already been reflected on in this segment. But here goes, The Bucs won their last game! (Whooopdeedo) proving that even a blind squirrel gets a not every now and then! However by doing so the Bucs (as they do more often than not), shot themselves in the foot! Which that win was in essence. Dropping from a 3rd pick in the 1st to a 7th was a shortsighted move and was tell tale of the clueless mindset this regime has. I mean really by week 11 the writing was on the wall! By week 14 the writing was in bold capital letters. At that point the decision should’ve been made to play for the future. Cut the slackers and locker room cancers, play the the $#!T out of the 2nd, 3rd hell even 4th string to see who would be moving on with the team and who would not. Then we have to listen to #3 say in a post game presser (pretty sure week 14) after a loss, “We are going to play to win because we control our own destiny???” Did he even know when that term is supposed to be used? Certainly not when your team is 4-8 week 14 and looking like no more wins to be had. Once again another glimpse of a clueless mind set. If the team had a focus and respect for building a better team week 17 should’ve been a preseason type game plan. That move would’ve gave my beloved and beleaguered football club an excellent 1st round pick and would’ve also kept the starters healthy for next season which ties in perfect with Dirk’s philosophy!!!

  35. Defense Rules Says:

    @PA Privateer … “I am also going to say, if you can’t get the once in a generation DE, get the stud DT that will help DEs look better. I vote DT Vita Vea as of now.” Could definitely go along with that (or Bama’s Payne … they’re both stud DTs IMO). No way Licht goes along with that however IF Barkley or Nelson are sitting there at #7.

    Minkah Fitzpatrick is another option with our 1st pick IMO. We need a Safety, plus he’s also played a bunch of CB. Not to mention that he’s ALWAYS around the ball. Bottom line to me is that if we pick at #7 we should get SOMEONE who can help this team this year. And we need LOTS of help.

  36. jerseybuc Says:

    We can’t afford to trade up and give up picks, too many needs. If they like Davenport I would trade down to a team looking for QB help and grab another 2 or 3 that can be part of the solution. We need OL and DL help, a corner and a safety, and a RB. Lots of needs.

  37. Mike Johnson Says:

    Trade down and try to pick up 2 for 1 in the 1st rd if possible. But who Knows? What this buc mngt staff will do. NOTHING..And I do mean NOTHING..will surprise me when it comes our time to draft.

  38. Tom Says:

    I have faith that Licht will screw everything up.

  39. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Haven’t you loser “fans” figured out that you can root for the Bucs to win in that last game situation….all you have to do is also root for the Jets & Broncos to win….unfortunately, they didn’t so….it’s not us that did the wrong thing by winning it was them losing.

    Go find another team if you can’t root for us to win every game we play.

    The draft pick is the consolation prize for losers.

  40. 813bucboi Says:


    I agree 1000% percent….

    couldn’t have said it better…..

    GO BUCS!!!!

  41. Hodad Says:

    Expecting draft picks to step in, and immediately turn our fortunes around is folly. Licht has had four years to build a team, and we still need upgrades at almost every position. My expectations haven’t been tempered, they’ve been CRUSHED! I expect nothing but more disappointment next year.

  42. Duke Says:


    Davenport is a top 20 pk, possibly top 10. If you are a wagering type, I’m willing to work out a friendly wager.

    AC what did you watch that makes you think that Davenport is a project?

  43. Not there yet Says:

    Buccaneer Bonzai Says:
    January 25th, 2018 at 8:11 am
    And I promise you, this 5-11 “mess” will be turned around.
    Things are NOT as bad as you think.

    You can’t be in your late 40’s like some of us so you must be a new fan that was conscious of football when the bucs we’re winning with Dungy. Or you probably said the same thing last year. Apparently some people think if the bucs hit on all 7 of their picks we’ll be in playoff contention as if the bucs are the only ones drafting in our division. So the basement dwellers will knock out a couple of the other teams in our division if we draft well? No respect for the teams that have draft picks just like us but already made the playoffs, be excited for the new players but don’t think any draft pick will catapult us into the realm of the elites, free agency will have a bigger impact

    Seems that is all anyone cares about playing a meaningful game in December but not actually winning one.

  44. Tampabaybucfan Says:


    Get your facts straight…..we went from pick 5 to pick 7 with that last game not the 3rd pick……and we went there because Denver & the Jets lost.

    We may have been at 3 earlier in the year but several teams started winning like the Bears & 49rs….

    So, your goal is….once we reach our best draft pick position, then start losing till the end of the season. Lots of luck convincing the players & coaches to have that mindset.

    That is exactly what the Bucs losing culture has developed….a fan base that hopes for losses…..

  45. El_Buc941 Says:

    I say trade up to #4 in exchange for #7,this year’s #2,#5,next year’s #3 & #5.and get Saquoan Barkley.or use Doug Martin and this year’s 4th and next year’s #5 for the #4 pick.

  46. Pickgrin Says:

    Either Minkah or Nelson would be a solid pick at #7. Both play positions of “need” for this team and either would be an instant upgrade and day 1 starter.

    Can’t blow such a high pick trying to reach for a DE. This pick is too valuable. We HAVE to get a good player who starts for years with the #7 overall pick.

  47. Kalind Says:

    Quenton Nelson. That dude is elite. Most places have him the no.2 prospect

  48. Wausa Says:


    I’m not going to wager but Davenport to me looks like a 3rd down pass rushing end that needs some development. Because of his length I think by draft time he will be a late first or early second round pick.
    Those picks are still elite prospects, but top ten picks should be sure fire selections that contribute immediately at a high level.

    Barkley, Chubb, Fitzpatrick, James, Nelson and Vea all appear as though they will all fit into that category.

    I’m not saying Davenport will not be a great pro, but watching him at the Sr Bowl practices it does not take long to see he is going to me a major liability against the run.
    However, I am sure after a year or two of being with an NFL team he will get much stronger and improve dramatically.

  49. SOEbuc Says:

    TRADE DOWN. Kiper and Mayock and every other NFL analysts and GM and fan had a very strong feeling O.J. Howard was going top ten. Actually think it was seven or eight on everyone’s mock. Godwin was said to go mid-second and he went mid-third. Everyone and their momma don’t know who’s going when and what they will play like. Licht also has very good drafts, especially in the top four rounds (shut up. we needed a kicker badly and the kid made history at FSU). So lets go get an extra round one or extra round two and round three/four and see if Licht can draft it up with multiple early picks.

  50. Duke Says:


    I have to say you’re making a lot of sense and I don’t disagree with your observations. But what I don’t agree with you is , on where he will get drafted.
    I get the where he should be part, but that’s not how it works. I’m looking at what I think will happen.

    I wouldn’t be too quick to put much on how He did in drills.
    Mainly because they have him out of position. Basically the idea is to see if He is limited to a 3-4 or 4-3 . I didn’t get to see what happened with the drills but
    I can speculate what would be a problem for him .

    Can you shed some light on what I missed and specifically what you noticed.

  51. DislocatedBucsFan Says:

    Shouldn’t have wasted last years first on a TE

  52. unbelievable Says:

    This might be the most negative off season in JBF history…

    Do we have suicide watchers on the Sky Bridge yet?

  53. Guzzie Says:

    One thing all the posters who complain about winning the last game fail to mention, it’s not the coaches fault we won the game, Dirk was trying to play for the field goal, which we are known to miss clutch kicks, so ALL the blame for picking 7 instead of 4 is Jameis’s fault for not listening to his coach LOL

  54. Wausa Says:


    I know it’s a small sample size but watching Davenport I think he can come in and contribute right away with moves similar to a healthy Noah Spence(Davenport is much longer). Because of his lack of leg and upper body strength you can see he is going to have a tough time if the tackle he is going against is in good position on passing downs. He seems to have a difficult time disengaging against lineman as well, which to me indicates he will get moved around fairly easy on run plays.

    Barkley, Chubb, Vea, Nelson, Fitzpatrick and James are all freak athletes with outstanding strength, size and quickness for their position and all six have produced at very high levels against the best competition in college football.

    I just think when the draft actually happens all 6 of these guys will get drafted within the first 12 picks. Also, I think the chances are very high that one of them will be the Bucs first selection in the draft.

  55. NFLNut Says:


    For the umpteenth time … trading up to #4 is MEANINGLESS as both Saquon AND Chubb will likely be gone in the top 3 picks.

    Also, you don’t TRADE UP for a RB … or a DE imho … if Saquon, Chubb, Minkah and Quenton are all off the board at #7, then TRADE DOWN as AT LEAST one of the top 4 QBs will still be on the board and there should be a bidding war between the Redskins, Cardinals and Bills to get him … getting the Bills #21 and #22 and another pick is likely.


  56. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    You want to temper expectations. Let’s just look at history for a few names.
    We’ve been here before.

    Gaines Adams…#4 pick and a bust…

    We became so desperate by 2011 that we picked DE’s in the first and second round. How did that work out for us? Adrian Slowborn and Daquan Bowers.

    I’m not suggesting we shouldn’t at least try because of our past failures..I am suggesting that the title of this thread be taken seriously and we all temper our expectations. There is not ONE player in this draft who is a 100% sure thing.

    All we can do is hope that Lichts scouts have done a great job and we come out on the right side of the 50-50 crap shoot.

  57. BucEmUp Says:

    Three things that would have equated to more wins last season with the same players and going forward

    Give Barber or a better rb 20 plus carries a game

    Move the corners up to.jam the wrs at the line

    Start Godwin from day one.

    That’s just three to start with that would have equated to a better record automatically. None will happen in 2018

    Also, run a damn slant route on offense every now and then

  58. bucs_365 Says:

    Davenport likely isn’t a year-one impact guy. He’s extremely lean for his height. His legs are toothpicks. I don’t see him being to anchor in the running game.

  59. Duke Says:


    I have to again agree with the line of separation between Davenport and Chubb, Barkley , elite and talented with huge upside is not the same thing.

    Did you see if the drills had Marcus in a three point stance?
    The kid is out there listening to everybody and trying to do what they say.
    I do know that today He dominated in drills. Crushed it.

    He also had a hour wk out with the GM and pro personnel or what ever title, of the Cleveland browns. Met them again later for dinner and film reviews. The browns pick where again…1 and 4 then 2 second rounders. I know he has another private work out tomorrow for crap I forgot, Jets or Broncos , I have to think that the NFL scouts and GM’ s are better positioned to evaluate a player than most folks.

    His size…Lol dude is big and strong. He’s not polished nor does he have a lot of tools in his tool belt. Especially compared to Chubb. So when you think He’s not strong or fast enough……….If that were true He would have been old news by today. Slow and weak isn’t something that interests anyone. The problem is technically He’s a mess because He’s had no good coaches positionally to guide him. He’s raw. Real raw! Weak , skinny , slow………Yep!

  60. NJBucsFan Says:

    It seems like Davenport is Noe’s misguided lust for this year’s draft