The Buccaneers And Denico Autry

February 1st, 2018

Remember the good ol’ days of 2016, when the Bucs had a versatile defensive end with 6 1/2 sacks in Robert Ayers with rookie DE Noah Spence complementing him with 5 1/2?

That was hardly striking fear into offensive coordinators, but at least it was reasonable production. This year, all Bucs DEs combined for 7 1/2 sacks.

That’s one sack off the edge for every 74 pass attempts. Unthinkable stuff.

The free agency dinner bell rings for the 2018 season in just 41 days. Hallelujah! It’s Christmas day for the season of hope.

The market for defensive ends isn’t special, but the Bucs can find talent upgrades.

Enter Denico Autry of the Raiders. He turns 28 in July and hasn’t missed a game since 2015. His five sacks in 2017, well, they look like a pot of gold to Joe. Autry is versatile, rushing inside and outside, and he officially defensed (broke up) seven passes last season, which is a stunning number for a guy who only started in three games.

Joe likes that Autry was a late bloomer — great story linked here — entering the league at 23 years old undrafted out of Mississippi State, so he has limited tread on his tires.

There’s speculation in Oakland that Chucky will want someone more ferocious at DE opposite mighty Kalil Mack and the Raiders will let Autry get paid on the open market.

Tampa will welcome you, Mr. Autry! Five sacks, versatile, we need you. Seriously, if the Bucs could just get their DE corps back to almost-average production, this team will be much better instantly.

51 Responses to “The Buccaneers And Denico Autry”

  1. Pistol Pete Says:

    I am not excited by this at all….

  2. teacherman777 Says:

    We need 4 DE’s.

    Solid addition.

  3. Not there yet Says:

    Lol pistol Pete we have to be thankful Joe doesn’t run the team. Nosh Spence got more than that as a rookie and this sounds like a will Clark clone.

    The defense is going to suck but I bet good or bad record if the bucs offense is electric the only person getting fired would be Mike Smith. Unfortunately you can’t ignore the d line for 5 years and hope to accomplish what the jaguars did because they drafted heavily over the last few years in defense. The defense will be average or less than so better make sure you score a lot of points this year dork

  4. ManzielMadness Says:

    Decent depth. Not like there’s anybody on the FA market that screams 10 sacks a season or a rookie that’s gonna come in and make an immediate impact. I’ll take anybody that can breathe on a QB at this point.

  5. RawBucFan Says:

    So no one is gonna even consider Kony Ealy???

  6. RawBucFan Says:

    Michael Bennett, Kony Ealy, Noah Spence & a great (lucky) draft pick. It won’t get any better than that for next seasons edge rushers!! Unless we make a major trade…which won’t happen.

  7. Mike Johnson Says:

    I’ll wait and see like I have been doin since…..FOREVER!

  8. 813bucboi Says:

    i’ll take him once we cut baker day2 of FA season……

    day 1 I want Malcolm butler….tre boston….kony ealy or ziggy….

    day2 we can get this guy and a olineman…..

    still gotta draft…..DE….RB…DT…OL….S…CB….

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!

  9. Evolvingbucfan Says:

    loL sad when we are looking to get back to average on defense.

  10. 813bucboi Says:

    RawBucFan Says:
    February 1st, 2018 at 10:22 am
    Michael Bennett, Kony Ealy, Noah Spence & a great (lucky) draft pick.

    I AGREE!!!!!….

    that wont be too bad IF everyone can stay relatively healthy…..

    #NOEXCUSESIN2018!!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!

  11. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I think he is a gamble worth taking. Meets the age requirement. Healthy. Could be ready to take the next step.

    We need depth as well as starters so at worst he becomes depth.

  12. SOEbuc Says:

    We can talk about acquiring a DT also. Picking up a nice DT to replace fat ass Baker is a dire need for both the run and pass blocking, neither of which we have.

  13. godzilla13 Says:

    With a thin FA market Denico Autry (6-5 270) can be a solid signing. He has progressed each year and his five sacks, four “stuffs” and seven passes defended would be a welcome addition.

  14. Tnew Says:

    Good article Joe. Thanks for this info. This is a real possible upgrade to our defense. Free agents that will actually come available must be considered. Andrew Norwell and Jerick Mckinon are two others on my list. Would allow the Bucs more flexibility in the draft if Chubb doesn’t fall. I’m beginning to circle Minkah. If he runs a sub 4.4 like is being suggested, as fluid as he looks coming in and out of breaks, he could be the back end playmaker that allows an x to be placed on one side of the field.

  15. Tom Says:

    I would definitely go after Autry & unload Baker, Ayers & Gholston. Say what you want about Clark but I think he was better than any of the three above I mentioned.

  16. Buccaneer scotty Says:

    can’t wait to sign this guy and when he only gets five and a half or six sacks everyone’s going to want to run him out of town and call him a bust

  17. Destinjohnny Says:

    He would double and triple the sack numbers of anybody we have.
    Ye ha…. Sucks to be a Rays and or bucs fan.

  18. NFLNut Says:

    Better than Ayers … not sure Oakland lets him go though as the only real upgrade would be Ziggy and he will be in high demand and may even be locked up by Detroit before free agency starts

  19. Guzzie Says:

    Tnew… I like Fitz, but can this coaching staff use him properly, playing 15 yards away from the line of scrimmage every play kinda hard to make an impact

  20. rrsrq Says:

    Just hope and pray Chubb falls to #7, like nobody expected OJ to be there at #19. Maybe the Colts want to go offense or trade back, then there is hoping Denver doesn’t sign Cousins

  21. Tom Edrington Says:

    Again someone is ASSUMING that free agents will be falling all over themselves to sign on with the Buccaneers….

    Good luck with that…

  22. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    The biggest gamble is with Noah Spence’s surgeon and rehab people.

    Noah was on his way to a ten sack season. We MIGHT get lucky in the draft or FA and I realize we have to try….but where we really need to get lucky is with Noah’s shoulder. If it’s healthy we’ll improve immediately.

  23. MarineBucsFan Says:


    I’m from Orlando. Sucks to be a Magic fan too!!

    All my professional teams have questionable personnel decisions from their respective management team.

  24. Phil Says:

    We should be going after Ziggy Ansah.

  25. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    SOEbuc Says
    “We can talk about acquiring a DT also.”

    Very true. So far as I am concerned, we should only keep McCoy, Spence and Clinton McDonald (not a starter). I would not mind keeping Ayers just for his work ethic and attitude, nut not if it means passing on someone better.

    StPeteBucsFan Says
    “The biggest gamble is with Noah Spence’s surgeon and rehab people.”

    I feel for the guy. His plight reminds me of what McCoy went through when he was first drafted. Hopefully, he’ll become as solid as MCCoy has this year. I hope for the best…but Licht would be a fool to count those chickens before they hatch. He needs to bring in all the new talent on the line that he can.

  26. LakeLand Says:

    Young guys don’t come to Tampa Bay. They want to go someplace where they can excel. They want to set themselves up for that big contract. Only the old,washed up guys go to Tampa Bay, because they overpay. And they know they are on their last leg.

  27. Lord Cornelius Says:

    The best D-line players available are likely DTs so I hope we grab one of either Star Lotulele or Sheldon Richardson; because they would also help the pass rush from the interior.

    Grab one of those DTs and sign the best DEs available – if it’s this guy go get him and another 1-2 players like him

  28. No_Bucs_Given Says:


  29. gotbbucs Says:

    They’re probably going to have to pull off a trade for a veteran pass rusher of some kind and draft one or two. The free agent crop of pass rushers this year might be one of the worst I can remember.

  30. uckinator Says:

    Other than RB and an offensive lineman, the rest of the draft: DEFENSE !

  31. aussieBucfan Says:

    Oh la la George Johnson mk II..

  32. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Autry Has Line-Up At:
    • Outside Rush Linebacker
    • Defensive End
    • Defensive Tackle

    If your going to run 4-3 defense w/3-4 personnel (hybrid)
    You must have versatility across your front 7.

    So…..Sign’em Up (He’s cheap & Young)

  33. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    I would also acquire:

    Cowboys Defensive End/Defensive Tackle – David Irving

    David Irving (24yrs Old)
    • Height: 6′ 7″
    • Wingspan: 9′ 0″
    • Weight: 290 lbs

  34. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Draft Possibilities

    Nose Tackles
    • B.J. Hill – N.C. State | Height: 6-4 Weight: 315 | Time: 5.17
    • Kendrick Norton – Miami | Height: 6-3 Weight: 318 | Time: 5.23

    Defensive End/Defensive Tackle
    • Andrew Brown – Virginia | Height: 6-4 Weight: 285 | Time: 4.7

    Defensive End | Outside Rush Linebacker
    • Kemoko Turay – Rutgers | Height: 6-5. Weight: 252 | Time: 4.77

    Potential Defensive Line (Run)
    LDE Denico Autry | Noah Spence | Kemoko Turay
    LDT Gerald McCoy | Will Clarke | Andrew Brown
    NT B.J. Hill | Kendrick Norton
    RDE David Irving | Will Clarke | Andrew Brown

    Note: This “if” we decide not to move veteran –

    Gerald McCoy
    • 6× Pro Bowl (2012–2017)
    • 3× First-team All-Pro (2012–2014)
    • Second-team All-Pro (2016)

  35. JimmyJack Says:

    The obsession with sack numbers gets blown out of proportion IMO. So Ayers and Spence had 12 sacks in 2016, I didn’t think they were very good at all that year. They were unable to provide much pressure hurrying the QB in a lot of those games. Our line did get a few good matchups where they put a lot of heat and got a lot of QB hits but they were completely ineffective in a lot of games too.

    I understand your going to get some tough matchups but their were too many games in 2016 and way way too many games in 2017 where our D Line was completely dominated and a non factor for 60 mins. This is not a new problem. This line has been getting dominated by the league for, what?, a decade? I lost track.

    Go back and look at the New England game. I don’t think we got a sack that game but we hit Brady a ton and forced a lot of hurried throws and got a pick from it. We don’t have to get sacks, but we need an ability to pressure QBs. And we don’t have to have a dominate Dline that destroys everybody, but we do need a line that can find a way make at least a few drive ending plays per game. Not get dominated the wire to wire.

    They currently don’t play at an NFL level and it’s unacceptable.

  36. JAB83 Says:

    Loved him from the get go!!!

    But he is a 3-4 guy….

    Joe are you trying to give us the inside scoop???

    “How many sacks you gonna get?”


  37. Pickgrin Says:

    If he hits free Agency – Autry should definitely be on our list of possible acquisitions.

    Cut Baker – Cut Gholston (unless he’s willing to renegotiate for 1/2 his current deal). Keep Ayers for 1 more year – and re-sign McDonald.

    In addition to those in-house moves – The Bucs need to bring in 2-3 DL free agents and then draft 2-3 more this year. Open competition at all starting spots aside from 3-tech DT. Spence, Ayers, McDonald and Stevie T will have to fight it out with the 4-6 new additions – whoever looks best coming out of camp and preseason gets the starting spots and best of the rest are retained for depth.

    At least 6 draft picks over the next 3 years need to be used on DL players. And hopefully 2 or 3 of them will be high picks.

  38. JAB83 Says:


    Hopefully the wont be to high of draft picks…lol… BUT I agree 100%

  39. JimmyJack Says:

    The Dline is an accountability and a preparation issue. When we hit game day we play with no confidence and no intensity(for the majority). Doubtful that this guy is the answer. If not he won’t change a dam thing.

    Only two options I see to fixing this is either Chubb or blockbuster trade.

    Either way we gotta give up something.

    Licht can either show the nads, which he has shown BTW, to make the proper move and live and die with it…….or he can do nothing like he has been with, likely, average at best results.

    It’s go time Jason…..What ya gonna do?

  40. JimmyJack Says:

    I could see maybe a guy like Bennett possibly being a guy to come in and demand more from his teammates but I just don’t know. Is he that type? I’m not sure.

    If he is that may be a good move that won’t cost us a bundle in a trade. Maybe a guy like JPP? I don’t know………Licht better try something I say, or he’ll be a goner.

  41. LUVMYBUCS Says:


    Adding a couple younger, serviceable defensive lineman, plus at least two above average corners – will be key for this year.

    Signing an aging veteran at corner won’t cut it this year, because the 2019 free agent pool at the position: is extremely limited. So a one year band-aid is not the solution.


    -Younger Serviceable Lineman
    -2 Stud Corners

    -At Least one Stud Defensive Lineman

    • Khalil Mack DE 26 OAK (See:Edwards)
    • Carlos Dunlap DE 28 CIN
    • Brandon Graham DE 29 PHI
    • Frank Clark DE 24 SEA
    • Danielle Hunter DE 23 MIN
    • Henry Anderson DE 26 IND
    • Trey Flowers DE 24 NE
    • Mario Edwards DT 23 OAK ← Can’t sign both – trade target??
    • Eddie Goldman DT 24 CHI
    • Carl Davis DT 25 BAL ← Cheap Serviceable trade target

    Outside of that – wait for someone to be released ala Mo Wilkerson.

  42. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Stop handing out bloated severance packages to aging veterans.
    Do your job, and sign a couple stud young corners.

    If your not a closer – hire someone in personnel that is ala Jerry Reese

  43. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Trade target #1
    –> Carlos Dunlap DE (28yrs Old) CIN

  44. richbucsfan Says:

    it’s going to take several years to rebuild this team if that is the goal…but, with each passing season, McCoy is getting old, LVD is as well…untold damage done by incompetents …smh

  45. JimmyJack Says:

    Luv….I get what your saying but my point is that if the Bucs don’t bring in a player who will come in and start demanding a lot more from this Dline they are going to continue getting dominated for full games at a time again.

    My answer is that you gotta bring in somebody on that line that will bring more leadership demanding accountability and better preparation.

    That’s just my opinion. I mentioned Webster in one of my posts he said it doesn’t have to necessarily be a Dlineman. That player could come from anywhere. If that’s true maybe that guy is somebody you mentioned in your post. Great go get him.

    Some fams think it’s on the coaching to get these guys playing at a higher level. If that’s true, make the adjustment and bring in better talent.

    And I’m not talking about bring in Bennett or JPP(just spitballing names) as bandaids…..I’m saying that if somebody like that can come in and demand a higher level from their teammates that’s what we need. Sure they won’t be there for decades but you draft other guys to continue preaching the tone set, or find them elsewhere.

    Yes there is a talent issue……But there is an intensity issue, a confidence issue, there are issues getting physically dominated. Some of the players on this team just are not playing at the same level as their competition. It’s not all about talent…….”Winning cultures” and “Losing cultures” are not myths. It’s real and it starts with leadership.

    This team has not filled the leadership hole, especially on defense. That’s far bigger then any talent hole you want to identify.

  46. JimmyJack Says:

    Also LUV, when a team has a guy, the stud lineman’s your referring too, that’s a team leader and demanding high levels of practice and preparation of everybody around them their teams are very rarely going to let them walk out the door if they young.

    If Mack or Hunter are that type of player their teams ain’t letting them walk.

    That really only happens if they are past their prime and the team feels comfortable with their team without them.

    Don’t mistake sheer talent for leadership. I’m talking leadership here and not just talent.

    Hypothetically let’s just say Carlos Dunlap, very talented, plays at a high level and put up big stats because Geno Atkins is the guy he looks up to and Atkins demands a high level……Well guess what? If Dulap comes to Tampa he don’t have nobody demanding squat from him. His game is going to fall off.

    Any Tampa fan that’s been here a long time has seen this hypothetical story play out over and over again. Other teams don’t have magic.

    My bottom line on the whole thing…..If Licht wants to get serious about keeping his job he needs leadership on his defense. It’s likely not out there in free agency………Time to make a move, whether it be for Chubb or a player deal we need somebody on this team that gives us an attitude change next year or I don’t see us succeeding.

  47. GrudenForPresident Says:

    That’s what it cone too? Get excited over sum scrub with 5 sacks? SMH sounds like another George Johnson to me. Good job Joe an thank you Jesus you aren’t our GM!

  48. LUVMYBUCS Says:


    I hear U – but I don’t think a guy has to come in a demand anything.
    Just come in and do your freaking job. That’s all.
    Phucking seal the edge & rush the passer.

    Pressure Bust Pipes!

    I know of several defensive front sevens – that didn’t have a true alpha, but collective got the job done. Why we can’t

    But if your front end -is going to be average-your corner damn well better be above average. It’s just that simple. Football 101 baby.

  49. LUVMYBUCS Says:


  50. JimmyJack Says:

    Well Luv our Dline is not average. They are well below average right now. I honestly looked at them most games and thought they weren’t even playing at an NFL level.

    I think what you are saying can work but you are going to need some excellent talent at a spot or two and you are going to need quality players surrounding them. Then you will need quality depth pieces behind them.

    Your talking like nine players away bro with another star-type player mixed in. We are more then a few years away from that IMO.

    I just think it’s much easier to identify one or two guys that will set a tone from day one and give us an attitude change. You put a little hunger and intensity on that line and they will get these serviceable players making plays during games. Not getting stood up for 60 mins.

    There’s just two ways to go about it I guess. That’s just what I’d like to see.

  51. JimmyJack Says:

    I also think the defecto factor about all of it could be if they do consider a switch to a 3-4 base.

    I do get a bit tired of hearing about it year after year but think it’s worth a bit of consideration until free agency starts. The only way they keep Baker is if that’s the plan so if he’s not cut I’ll be maybe the only fan not freaking out.

    The main reason I think they need to consider this is from the leadership standpoint I talked about. I see leadership with out Linebackers. I see accountability. They may not make every play but I can’t say they ever looked like they weren’t prepared for any games…..Even when a starter goes out. I’d much rather see a drafted player or a Noah Spence play with our LB core. I believe that will get them to their highest level.