What Now?

March 19th, 2018

Corners still out there.

So let the speculation begin.

A good barometer on what positions a team may target in the draft is looking at positions the team did not address in free agency. This gets a little tricky with Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht, who has a history of signing free agents and then doubling up and drafting at the same position.

For example, two years ago Licht signed Brent Grimes and drafted Vernon Hargreaves, both corners. He also signed Robert Ayers and then drafted Noah Spence, both defensive ends.

Last year, Licht signed DeSean Jackson and followed that up with drafting Chris Godwin, both receivers.

Problem was, and is, that the Bucs have so many holes in the roster Joe would be a bit surprised if Licht followed his same pattern and drafted defensive tackles fully ignoring running back, defensive end and corner.

If Licht ignores defensive end in the draft again, especially with Spence coming off two surgeries in as many years to the same shoulder, well, that would at best be reckless and bordering on irresponsible.

Then again, evidence suggests the Bucs don’t value edge rushers.

Perhaps the Bucs think Hargreaves can bounce back from a lost season. Surely the team isn’t going to give up on Hargreaves so quickly. At running back, maybe the team thinks Peyton Barber is an every-down back. Joe isn’t so sure that is a safe bet, but who knows at this point?

There are two decent corners still out there looking for work. E.J. Gaines, who started for Buffalo, a playoff team last season, is scheduled to visit Arizona. Bashaud Breeland, who had signed with the Stinking Panthers, blew his physical. In the NFL, one man’s flunked physical is another team’s perfectly healthy player.

As Joe has stated on Twitter a few times over the past few days, any name you can think of who has experience as a starting corner is a better option than Ryan Smith, who at the time Joe is typing this here article is doomed to start for the Bucs.

And no, Joe does not trust this defensive coaching staff to develop a rookie corner, sorry. So drafting one in Joe’s eyes is akin to throwing away a pick.

Perhaps we may see a new Bucs corner before the end of the week? Options are out there.

44 Responses to “What Now?”

  1. NFLNut Says:


    EVERYONE say it with me:

    “Saquon, Chubb, Nelson or TRADE DOWN!”


  2. NFLNut Says:

    Gaines or Breeland would be A-OK with me!

  3. Anthony Says:

    Bucs need to get a CB like Breeland and/or Gaines.

  4. Destinjohnny Says:

    So many variables
    We have so many holes.
    If we could have done what the colts did..
    But hell we can’t even lose right.

  5. TXBuc Says:

    Yeah Joe is right lets give up on another young player let him go to another team, turn the corner, become a free agent….. all for Joe to then post everything day about how the Bucs should sign him…

  6. Jjones Says:

    Bucs have more holes to fill than Mons Venus.

  7. Glazers Almanac Says:

    There are two things I can personally guarantee myself for 2018:
    1. Bucs aren’t making the playoffs.
    2. The sidebar ads on Joesbucsfan.com will always be pictures of hot chicks and Doleman Law Group plugs.

    My life is not headed in the right direction.

  8. Joe Redner Says:

    @Jjones Dammit man

  9. Joe Says:

    Yeah Joe is right lets give up on another young player let him go to another team, turn the corner, become a free agent….. all for Joe to then post everything day about how the Bucs should sign him…

    Not sure what you are referring to. Joe never suggested cutting anyone in this post.

  10. Joe Says:

    My life is not headed in the right direction.


  11. LakeLand Says:

    It seems like Jason Licht is not under pressure from the Glazers. He’s not making moves that a GM would make when his job is on the line. He could have made trades for DE Robert Quinn, CB Aqib Talib, DE Michael Bennett, CB Jason McCourty. He had a host of good young RBs in free agency to choose from.

  12. LakeLand Says:

    Cleveland traded Jason McCourty and their 7th round draft pick (219) to the Pats. The Pats gave them their 6th round draft pick (205). That’s all the Pats gave up.

    Jason McCourty will make $2,921,868 in 2018. And he will be a UFA in 2019.

  13. Todd Says:

    Best option for the Bucs is for them to get Nelson at 7 if he falls to us. That would be best to protect our franchise qb. Ya we need. De badly in the worst way go for one in round two and three. I’d totally sign EJ Gaines for sure also.

  14. Capt.Tim Says:

    So much trash talk about Ryan Smith!!
    The Kid was a fking Rookie- on a Sh*tty team, with no trace of a pass rush.
    Cut him a break. This crappy team would make Dion Sanders look bad!!!
    His technique and speed looked good.

    If with Smith Improving- we still need two good Corners, anfd a safety.

    But Licht, Koetter, and Mike Smith see a different team than we do.
    We all agree that the need Pass rushing DEs, RBs, CBs,guards,And Safeties.

    They think we need Run stuffing DEs and DTs, Centers, And Kickers.
    Priority one is kickers
    They seem ok with everything else

    Same priorities as last year- give or take a WR.


  15. LakeLand Says:

    John Dorsey knew that Cleveland was at a disadvantage in free agency, because of their losing history. So he traded for 3 key starters, QB Tyrod Taylor, WR Jarvis Landry, CB Damarious Randall. He also signed 7 players in free agency, 4-5 of them will probably be starters. Now he will work the draft, and pickup more quality young players. That’s what a GM should be doing for his team.

    And Cleveland only gave up a 4th and 7th for a 25 year old talent like Landry
    He traded the 4th, 5th and Deshone Kizer for Damarious Randall and Green Bay 4th, 5th
    He traded a 3rd to the Bills for Tyrod Taylor
    Now he will probably work the draft and get other draft picks

  16. NFLNut Says:

    John Dorsey gave Jason McCourty away for almost nothing and stupidly traded a 3rd for Tyrod Taylor … he had a ton of picks and cap space to work with so I do think he’ll dramatically improve the Browns in short order but those two trades were horrendous imho.

  17. IsrBuc Says:

    All the guys we brought in in FA, especially from the eagles who just won the SB, one must question himslef why these guys REALLY signed with the bucs.
    Did they really care about winning? if so, why TB? they just won the SB. they wanted to get payed. that’s why they are here. they are too old to be thinking about canton or anything like that. they will be under the radar in TB so will be overlooked and probably won’t make it to the pro bowl even. How motivated are they?
    I smell more busts.
    There is a reason why FA fail here and some rookies like asj, blount, talib, barron etc. succeed in other places.

  18. Pickgrin Says:

    We are pretty well done with this phase of free agency I believe. Maybe 1 more player – and if so, probably an inexpensive one.

    By my calculations we are right around and possibly less than $10M over the cap now with the signings of Jensen and Curry (along w/ the release of Ayers).

    On to the draft.

    Chubb, Nelson or Trade Down in the 1st
    RB in the 2nd
    Rest of draft goes to Defense unless we got Chubb in the 1st in which case go OG in the 3rd and then BPA for DL and DBs the rest of the way.

  19. Pickgrin Says:

    meant $10 under the cap of course – where’s the damn edit button Joe?

  20. Pa Privateer Says:

    Make an offer to:

    CB EJ Gaines
    CB Shaun Smith
    DE Kony Ealy
    DT Ndamukong Suh (big signing bonus, small salary, with massive incentives)

    Offer to Bring back:

    CB Hey Jude
    CB Robert McLain
    OC Joe Hawley
    OG Kevin Pamphile
    DE Ryan Russell
    DT Clinton McDonald
    RB Charles Sims

    Look, I get it. Some of these our own FAs are not the best. But they know the system and they can always get cut during Training Camp.

    All of our TB FAs create great depth and super cheap.

    What if…….we signed SUH?

    Run a 3-1-3 Defense.
    3 DL = McCoy, Allen, Sun
    1 Rover = Spence
    3 LB = LVD, Kwon, Beckwidth

    rotation (backups):
    DL = Unrein, Golston, Stevie-T, Curry, Lambert, Ward
    LB = Glanton, Bond, Bullough

    The Spence/LBs could be the pass rushers

    That 3-1-3 gives both run stopping and pass rushing potential.

  21. denjoe Says:

    Hey all you national guys, We don’t need an EFFEN safety in the first round! geesh don’t give meat head any ideas.

  22. teacherman777 Says:

    GM’s are proud.

    Licht drafted Vernon Hargreaves in the 1st round!

    He drafted Ryan Smith in the 4th round!

    They both got a lot of snaps last year. They will get a lot of snaps again this year.

    Players need snaps to EVOLVE.

    Vernon Hargreaves, Ryan Smith, Javien Elliot, and Jude Adjeh-Barimah should all compete for starting nickle.

    But we NEED a legit #2 CB for his season!

    The Rams have Marcus Peters AND Aqib Talib. The Titans have Logan Ryan, Malcolm Butler, AND Adoree Jackson.

    The best teams in the NFL have 3 starting corners.

    We have 1 and 4 young guys who havent proven themselves yet.

    Please sign a legit #2 CB!

    Last year, I was calling for McCourty! Now he’s a Patriot.

  23. OneBucPerson Says:

    Regardless of if we snag EJ Gaines (as the Bucs have been rumored to be interested in him) we need to snag a a corner high in the Draft. I’d love to see either Mike Hughes or Jaire Alexander wearing our ugly ass unis.

  24. Bucballbaby84 Says:

    I’m all for trading back from pic 7 and getting more picks. I don’t care what they do with any of those pics as long as they Get Derrius Guice at the end of the first round or beginning of the second round in the process.

  25. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I really don’t see why Joe feels the Bucs cannot deveop a corner.

    Both corners are only two years in, right? Last I knew development meant 3-4 years of commitment. In this case, Vernon had a decent first year, then a bad second year. Smith spent his first year at safety, so really, he only has one year of Bucs development at corner.

    So sorry. I think this ‘Bucs can’t develop corners’ thing is an exaggeration. There is no evidence to support it.

    It’s like saying a student cannot pass an exam whentne student is halfway through taking it. It’s just not a fair accusation.

    One that, I think, is perhaps motivated by a desire for other positions in the draft. But here is the thing…the theory is therefore contradicting itself.

    If the Bucs cannot develop a corner as Joe claims, then they would move on quickly to try to find one that can self develop more quickly. Therefore, they would either sign another vet, or they would draft one.

    Because it really doesn’t matter if you or I think the Bucscan develop acorner. What matters is what the Bucs think.

    Do the Bucs think they can develop a corner? If so, do the Bucs feel secure in Vernon and Smith? If not secure in them, then the MUST draft a corner.

  26. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Scuse the early AM tablet speak. Too tired to correct things.

  27. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    If Joes evidence that the Bucs cannot develop a corner is Vernon Hargreaves and Ryan Smith, then he is saying those players are failures and so the Bucs need to get replacements.

    And that means the draft.

  28. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    IsrBuc, outside of our own re-signed players, only three of the free agents were signed to be staters…the kicker, the DE, and the C/OG.

    None of them are old.

  29. Joeypoppems Says:

    Needing a CB screws up any draft strategy I try to come up with. Im still holding out hope for EJ Gaines but it probly wont happen

  30. Defense Rules Says:

    Licht drafted VHIII, Spence & Godwin same year as he brought in Grimes, Ayers & DJax in FA because the the latter were bridge players … 2-3 years max … and because those positions (CB, DE & WR) lacked depth. No issue at all with the strategy, but who he drafted (or maybe where he drafted them) has turned out to be somewhat concerning.

    In VHIII’s case, you can’t teach speed (drafted too high). In Spence’s case, you can’t teach size (would be awesome in a 3-4, although his putting on weight now might help him in the 4-3). In Godwin’s case, I love the kid … he’s our future #2.

  31. Defense Rules Says:

    And Joeypoppems, I’m in total agreement that we desperately need to add a starting corner in free agency. EJ Gaines would be nice, so would Breeland. Then let Ryan Smith & VHIII also compete for the starting outside (we need the depth anyways). That’d allow us to draft a CB, but later down the totem pole (4-7) as well as an OLineman & a 2nd RB later down there. We need our higher picks (1-3) for DE (hopefully 2), RB, DT.

  32. 1sparkybuc Says:

    With even a mediocre defense the Bucs would have been a contender last season, even in the toughest division in the NFL. The D stunk. They have already upgraded the DL in personnel and the coach, and it’s just the beginning. I have to believe they will do enough between now and September to field a contender. They don’t have to win it all, but they have to be respectable.

  33. adam from ny Says:

    i think if sapp was the coach the team would be totally nuts…if this whole thing flops out this year, let’s go there…might as well make brooks the gm too…it would be stir crazy type ish in tampa…i’m about ready for crazy sapp rants at the podium and coming down on players….he’d prolly slap dudes up too…if we do another 5-11 campaign let’s just go animal house in tampa !

  34. Hodad Says:

    I listened to Allen, I think you’ll hear the same from Curry, those guys want to win. Allen doesn’t sound like the type of guy who’s here for the pay check. Not all players are Chris Baker. Talented teams like Philly lose talented players. Philly decided to go in a different direction, we’ll see how it plays out. To say Curry is looking to rip us off, and retire is completely unfair. Welcome to Tampa, sorry we’re all a little skeptical.

  35. mog2010 Says:

    Still holding some hope for vh and rs, i dont think corner should be a need in the draft.If we had cut bg then yes sign a fa corner but right now, we have much bigger needs elsewhere. The bears employed the nd oline coach, if nelson is there at 7, da bears may want to trade. They have previous for dumb moves and a gaurd should not be a priority in the first round

  36. El_Buc941 Says:

    Joe you know who still is out there???SUH!!!

  37. gotbbucs Says:

    Impossible for young players to develop in the NFL anymore. As soon as they screw up, the fans and blog sites are looking for their replacement.

    Hargraeves had a bad sophomore season, let’s cut him and sign the next Verner or Mike Jenkins to replace him. Ryan Smith had a bad first year at corner, let’s cut him and see if Revis can rob some more money from the organization.
    Joe has become the pied piper for a generation of cry baby fools on this site. Quick, go for cover, the sky is falling because the Bucs didn’t sign every available free agent on the first day of the new league year.
    Bucs fans don’t deserve a winner right now. You want to talk about a loser culture in Tampa? It starts with the fans and media and snow balls down from there.
    Yeah, because EVERY struggling young player develops well. C’mon. –Joe

  38. The Buc Realist Says:


    the truth is that some do not like the defensive coaching staff, and will say and use anything to paint them in a bad light!!!!! Even if it is a 4th round pick that was 4th/5th on the depth chart that was pushed on field bad injuries!!!!!! The truth is that R Smith did improve despite no pass rush!!!!!

    But to write off the coaching staff because of that is just ignorant and/or agenda!!!!!!!! there are so many CB that have at some point struggled!!!

    The Smoke screen was so thick that the sheep could not see and were jumping ship left and right!!!!!!!!!

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

  39. Jmarkbuc Says:


    Smitty is not the answer and anybody with two eyes ( or maybe even one) can see that.. Doesn’t matter who is on the field while this man is DC


  40. Bossmode Says:

    I agree

  41. SOEbuc Says:

    How much would Gaines/Breeland cost? Bring in one of them to be the #2 and we don’t have to worry so much about getting a CB in an early round. Add some depth around the 5th round.

  42. bucs_365 Says:

    If we’re down to 20 million left to play with, doesn’t that need to be in reserve to extend Kwon, Marpet, and D. Smith? Think we may need to dump another salary (like Sweezy) if we want to sign a CB like Gaines.

  43. Fsuking Says:

    I’m a better corner than Ryan Smith. I lack ideal body composition and any sort of speed but I would never let another man get that open on me in a million years

  44. gotbbucs Says:

    No, not every struggling young player develops, but they aren’t automatically steaming piles of sh!t because they had one bad season.

    Ronde Barber sucked out loud his first couple years, should have tossed him on the heap with the rest of the trash? Now I’m not saying that either of our young corners is Barber, but the front office isn’t going to abandon the scouting process that they went through to draft these guys. Maybe they turn it around, maybe they don’t, but the everlasting quest to throw players away when they are under 25 years old and in their 2nd or 3rd year in the league is ridiculous and makes those wishing to do so look like complete idiots.