“I Love The Heartbeat Of This Locker Room”

April 19th, 2018

GM Jason Licht

General manager Jason Licht stood before local media today dishing out mostly a pile of non-meaty answers in the what’s often one of the goofiest exercises performed by GMs across the NFL: the pre-draft news conference.

Blah, blah, blah. There is little candor about the draft or anything remotely associated with it. And when the GMs are candid, well, it’s hard to decipher given all the smoke blown across the league.

But it wasn’t all draft talk today for Licht, who very firmly stated the love for the roster he’s built — with a fat pile of changes along his defensive line last month.

“Last year, there’s no sugar-coating the disappointment,” Licht said. “I feel like we were a much better team than our record suggested and we’ve talked over and over about the close games that we were in and the ones that we couldn’t find a way to finish. I feel like we’ve added some really quality players that have been in those situations. Not that that’s always the answer but I just love this locker room. I love the heartbeat of this locker room. I love the vibe and I think we’re a lot closer than some people think. I think we have a chance to do something really good. …

“I think any time you can add great character guys it’s going to help you but I think the experience of going through [losing close games helps]. Personally I like guys that hate to lose more than they love to win. So, I think that’s the mentality I kind of can sense throughout this building.”

It’s Year 3 for Licht post-Lovie. It’s Year 5 overall. However you slice it up, this is Licht’s team and there are no six-year rebuilding plans in the NFL any longer.

The Bucs are loaded with offensive talent, and there are Pro Bowlers at every level of defense.

And just as important, Licht and Dirk Koetter self-scouted their veteran coaching staff and made only one significant change. Joe can’t think of any change Licht made to his personnel department.

It was truly great to hear Licht’s passion for his locker room. They are his handpicked guys, led by a veteran quarterback and Pro Bowlers Kwon Alexander and Gerald McCoy on defense.

Now go find a way to compete hard and win a little against the Saints, Eagles and Steelers to open the 2018 season.

29 Responses to ““I Love The Heartbeat Of This Locker Room””

  1. Pickgrin Says:

    When you inherit what Licht did from Dom – A 5 year, draft centered total rebuild is exactly what was needed.

  2. AlteredEgo Says:

    Joe might get the e coli special at the press/media buffet for posting that photo…

  3. DB55 Says:

    Personally I like guys that hate to lose
    So is he confirming his plan to trade the heartless ice cream man. I sure hope so, McIceCream couldn’t win in the legends of football league.

  4. Pickgrin Says:

    And lets not forget that Jason was initially hampered by having to use Dom’s scouts and directors for that 1st draft, satisfy the wishes of Jeff Tedford that 1st draft (IE: ASJ and Sims) and taking orders from Lovie his 1st TWO years as to who to cut and which Free Agents to bring in…

  5. Reality_43 Says:

    I can feel the energy. Love it!!

    Last input from before the draft.

    I don’t want Saquon!! No No NO!! Look at his game by game stats for the last 2 years.
    Repeatedly putting up stellar numbers against sub-par teams and laying big fat eggs against teams like Ohio State and OH Rutgers. LOL

    Then look at the game by game stats for Nick Chubb.
    He had 13 straight games of over 120 yards before he got hurt and averaged 159 during that span and still came back strong after his injury splitting carries with Sony. He went on to have 11 more games over the century mark.

    Numbers don’t lie and he did it all against SEC defenses.

    If we can’t trade down then Nelson/Chubb is the way to go.
    If we do trade down, Chubb is still the way to go. GUARANTEED

    Nough Said Drop the MIC

  6. DB55 Says:


    In 2014 when licht and Lovie were hired 6 other teams hired new regimes. Only the Bucs and browns have not been to the playoffs since then.

  7. JonBuc Says:

    During Licht’s Out tenure…the Bucs are batting .333. That would be acceptable if this were baseball. I would love for Tampa to end the decade + drought. Last chance, Licht’s Out. Time to deliver…

  8. canadabucsfan Says:

    Schedule is out. Saints Eagle Steelers to start. Yikesssssss

  9. canadabucsfan Says:

    3 division champs…. the gods hate us lol

  10. 813bucboi Says:

    I bet licht, “cringed” at the schedule……

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

  11. canadabucsfan Says:

    Think you have no choice…. move up for barkley….

  12. CreamsicleBananaHammock Says:

    I dunno guys, I still really really really like and respect Licht and the decisions he’s made. Even drafting Aguayo in the 2nd…I just like a guy that’s willing to take those types of chances and think differently. The same mindset behind that pick is what gave us Ali Marpet previously.

    We’ll see how it goes, but I’m still a fan and trust the guys judgement

  13. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    Yeah drop the mic….the ENTIRE FREAKING league disagrees with your take but I feel certain you know more than Gil Brandt, Mike Mayock, and virtually every other NFL talent evaluator.

    Why wouldn’t you pick guys who are a HALF second slower in the 40…weaker on the bench and who didn’t catch as many passes in their ENTIRE careers as Barkley did in one year!!!! He wasn’t just a feature RB he was a feature receiver as well.

    I read folks who think we need DL more than anything so they are not for picking Barkley…OK I get that…disagree but I respect that argument.

    Another poster made this cogent argument…Nelson will help our running game for 10 years while Barkley will help it for 5. Again I get that argument and I respect it.

    I’m too freaking old LMAO. I’m not looking at five or ten years…I’m looking at NOW!!! 813 is on us…NO EXCUSES.

    But the argument that Barkley will bust…or he’s not all that…is simply absurd to anybody who has read what the experts are saying in draft report after draft report. Do some of you think…hey…there’s a 40% bust rate so I’ll take the gamble that Barkley is one of those 40% and I’ll look like real draft guru.

    NO you won’t. You’ll look at best lucky but for now it’s getting really really hard to defend your position. Barkley is CLEARLY the best RB in this class and it’s not even close!!! I like Guice a lot and think he can be like Fournette was for Jax.
    But Barkley is special…again though if you simply believe you don’t want an RB at 7 I get that…but don’t tell me Barkley is NOT the real deal.

  14. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    When I think of Licht I think of the great Kenny Roger’s Classic The Gambler.

    You got to know when to hold ’em,
    Know when to fold ’em,
    Know when to walk away,
    And know when to run.
    You never count your money
    When you’re sittin’ at the table.
    There’ll be time enough for countin’
    When the dealing’s done.

    I think this is one of Licht’s strengths. When you gamble you get an Ali Marpet…Kwon..and of course the occasional folded hand…Aguayo.

  15. DB55 Says:


    My crystal ball is telling me that reality is correct. Screenshot this and we’ll revisit come week 6.

  16. Architek Says:

    Defensive staff need to get these guys on the same page out the gate. COMMUNICATION IS THE KEY

  17. CreamsicleBananaHammock Says:

    @SPBF I’m a big fan of the RB position and feel like it’s been overly devalued, but I snagged this off twitter from Benjamin Allbright and it’s hard to argue

    Gurley was awful in 2016, they fixed the OL he became good again.

    Zeke ran behind the same OL that made Darren McFadden the #2 rusher in the NFL the year before.

    Jags were 7-6 with Fournette last year. 3-0 without him.

    McCaffrey ran for a total of 435 yards, 2 TDs, 3.7 a carry

    I’m all for addressing the RB position in the 2nd, but personally I’d steer away from using a 1st rounder on RB

  18. First Down Tampa Bay Says:

    A good O-line = Good RB. Draft Nelson.

  19. JimmyJack Says:

    Everything sounds good then Sunday hits and everything goes to sh!t. The overall effort from this team last year was atrocious. This team starts out the year playing half speed and getting destroyed every other week. There was absolutely no fight in this team and we will never be able to contend with no fight.

    That’s why the fans who said the season was over after week 3 were proven right. They could see this team had no fight.

  20. unbelievable Says:

    You wanna score points? You wanna win games?


  21. DanBucsFan Says:

    Jimmy Jack

    I strongly disagree with you brother. And respectfully, disagree about the fight in our team. They showed plenty of fight IMO, but they were out played\ coached in several contests last year. My reason for saying they showed fight is based on the fact that with everything that went south last year at least they didn’t just lay down and give up like most teams do once they are out of playoff contention, and we were out of playoff hopes by week 5 as far as I am concerned. They seemed to fight in more games than not IMO just always had a back breaking penalty or turnover when it seemed to matter most. Not to mention the questionable play calls on several occasions mainly in red zone or with time management. But I did see them fight and compete very hard in nost games.

  22. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Guys who are in favor of Nelson…I was with you until recently. And while I agree a strong line can make a mediocre RB look good imagine what it could do for a great RB. I won’t be disappointed if we get Nelson and not Barkley…well yes I will but not devastated. Nelson can block for Guice and Barber and we’ll still have an excellent running game.

    If we take Nelson that is ONE player in a five man unit which limits his contribution compared to a true star RB. If you want a true STAR RB you gotta pay up. Marshall Faulk was the 2nd overall pick…Ladainlian Tomlinson the 5th overall pick..Barry Sanders went 3rd overall…see a pattern here? Now before someone comes at me with some exceptions…they better be in that category I just mentioned…there is NO ONE in the league right now who comes close…LeVeon Bell…give me a break.

    And again before the you can find RB’s later in the draft start up….where were you when we wasted that number one pick on Jameis. You realize the BEST QB in league history…Brady was selected in the 6th.

    Exceptions to the rule do not eliminate the rule.

  23. Dewey Selmon Says:

    I hope I’m wrong, but check this out. Godell is going to suspend Jameis 4 games, but to help him out he made sure the NFL gave us a week 5 bye. Winston can’t be around the team during a suspension. Usually Thur night games are division games. I look for week 9 @Carolina for out Thur night game.

  24. Bobby M. Says:

    I will totally agree with folks that say Dominick was awful……BUT….when you cut top tier LTs for middle of the road draft picks, that’s you’re own fault. Penn would still be doing a better job then Smith and we could have used the Smith pick on another hole we have. When you release Barth for a no name kicker to then waste a 2nd rd pick on a kicker that doesn’t even stay in the league for 2 yrs…..thats your own fault.

    Licht has wasted tons of picks, basically the 2014 and 2016 draft produced a whole ONE STARTER….on top of that he’s been terrible in free agency and he signed both the coaches that most feel have grossly under-performed. So Licht is in the cup is half full mode for the sake of his career not because of any factual reason.

  25. DB55 Says:


    You’ll need someone to block unless you drafting Barry Sanders 2.0.

    Here’s a list of 25 first round busts at the RB position.


  26. Jjones Says:

    @Reality…I agree with you about Barkley. There’s no doubt Barkley is a physical specimen and checks all the combine boxes but Nick Chubb imo is the safest pick. That’s not to say that Barkley won’t be successful but I believe he’s got far too much hype. Chubb can do everything Barkley can but better imo and faced true competition week after week.

  27. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    EVERY player in this draft has a 40% chance of busting. Showing those 40% is nothing more than illustrating a statistic that we already know. AGAIN…there are literally NO sure things in the draft.

    But Illustrating the busts is not what is critical…what is critical are the super successes…where did those guys come from…that’s who we’re after! Again most of the great RB’s come from not just the first round but the top 5. Remember Barkley was projected as the top pick in this draft until the QB’s all horned in.

    I too sometimes let fear get to me and that’s what we’re talking about here…fear of putting too much hope in a pick when there is a 40% chance he’ll bust NO MATTER WHO HE IS.

    How’s this for negative thinking. Before moving to Tampa I was a Bengals fan.
    Grew up in sight of their stadium in N. KY and rooted for them since Paul Brown created them. The Bengals once picked another Penn State can’t miss RB and they used the top pick in the draft on Ki Jana Carter. He blew his knee out in the very first pre season game.

    So I started thinking…negatively…guards are far less likely to get a career injury than an RB…but they get MRSA…bad backs..and so what I realized I was doing was not gunning to win but making sure we wouldn’t lose. I HATE that and we’ve all justifiably criticized Koetter for that last year.

  28. Mike Johnson Says:

    I just listened to Licht’s draft press conf on Bucs.com and I get the vibe we will not be trading down unless…its quite an opportunity in terms of high picks. He said, there are a lot of players we like at 7 and we might not pass on them. Now if somebody offers the bank..thats different I think. He seems pretty confident. And I’m sure they have played out and rehearsed many scenerios. We all want a certain player. Lets just hope we get good ones. Man. I gotta catch myself, I’m actually not critical of my bucs in this posting!!

  29. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    Perhaps he’s hearing enough gossip behind the scenes to believe 4 QB’s will go ahead of us. Then he would feel we’ll get one of the targeted three.