The Smoke Was Not Real

April 27th, 2018

No fire to this smoke.

Joe thought it was more than a little odd the last couple of days.

All of a sudden, seemingly beginning Wednesday night, there was all sorts of chatter out in the open that the Bucs were going to draft Florida State safety Derwin James.

Why was this odd to Joe?

Consider that ever since Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht came to town, the guy the Bucs was targeting in the draftwas a pretty damn tight secret.

In Licht’s first year, no one figured Mike Evans was the target. Shoot, even Lovie Smith was throwing shade at Johnny Football.

The next year, folks assumed Licht/Lovie were going to draft America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston, but it was not until Jameis’ name was actually announced that there was any certainty. Licht kept the mystery afloat right until the bitter end.

Vernon Hargreaves? That was a mystery too, and the Bucs traded down to get him. O.J. Howard?

So when all this chatter was floating that James was on his way to Tampa Bay, Joe thought this was unusual as hell. Licht had never let the cat out of the bag before.

Turns out he didn’t. Aside from bringing in last night’s first-round pick, Vita Vea, for a visit to One Buc Palace, one of the team’s 30 allotted facility visits, not one person whispered in the backchannels that Vea was Licht’s focus.

So yeah, all of the noise and smoke about James was a smokescreen that helped Licht make the quarterback-hungry Bills nervous enough for Licht to take Buffalo to the cleaners.

52 Responses to “The Smoke Was Not Real”

  1. Joel Says:

    I think you mean the smoke was not real. If there’s smoke, there’s fire. No smoke and no James. Bucs did good.

  2. Joel Says:

    Bucs have 3 picks tonight. The rest of the NFC South only has 2. Good times.

  3. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    Just follow lichts FA bread crumbs and it seems that is who he will draft….bucs sign djax and then grab another pass catcher, bucs sign 3 DL then licht drafts DL….like the vea pick does he play the 1 tech or does it matter in smiths defense

  4. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    “In Licht’s first year, no one figured Mike Evans was the target. Shoot, even Lovie Smith was throwing shade at Johnny Football.”

    Idk there Joe, I remember Mike Evans to the Bucs being talked about quite a bit last off-season and he was a very popular mock draft pick.

  5. D-Rome Says:

    Goes to show you that mock drafts are stupid and a waste of time. I said it yesterday that Derwin James would have been a reach at 7. Most teams use the media to create smoke screens.

    The Bucs got a great player and they addressed an aging defensive line. While I understand Vea is not a GMC replacement they still needed to get younger on the line and think about life after GMC.

    On an semi-related note Cleveland did as Cleveland always does. As long as Cleveland keeps making decisions like they did last night the Bucs will never be Cleveland-South no matter what their record says.

  6. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    Excuse me not last off-season, 2014’s off-season.

  7. bucsfaninchina Says:

    Game plan for the night:

    G Will Hernandez

    Trade up with 4th rd pick for CB Isaiah Oliver

    Best RB available

  8. SCBucsFan Says:

    Come out of round 2 with a RB, CB and OL. Sign Reid. I think that makes for a pretty good improvement.

  9. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I was hoping all along for a trade down and got it…..I knew if there was a good QB there at 7 we’d get a trade offer.

    Others thought wrongly that we wouldn’t get a trade offer because teams below us didn’t need a QB so why trade with us…..those posters have learned an important lesson… can’t gamble when your player is on the board….you move up and get him and pay the price…..that happened.

    That trade was fantastic……we only got a 4th when we went from 8-11…..and this year we go from 7-12 and get 2 2s…..FANTASTIC.

  10. Bird Says:

    Giants will take will Hernandez

    They wanted norwell and didn’t get him. Need to protect Eli and just drafted Barkley. Would put money on it if in Vegas.

  11. BucFanFromOH Says:

    Gotta agree w/ Bird, there’s no way we get Hernandez unless we trade with the Giants. I think we stay pat at 6 and take CB, then hopefully use our lower round picks to trade up and get a SS and best RB available with our last pick.

  12. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Per Yahoo article this morning. Gave the Bucs the lowest 1st round grade.

    12) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: DT Vita Vea, Washington – They passed up Derwin James for Vea, who is good at what he does (plugging the middle) but isn’t going to add much pass rush value in a division with Matt Ryan, Cam Newton and Drew Brees. Grade: D+

  13. Its_A_Tough_Buc_Life Says:

    If we can get an RB, CB, OL in the second.. We are in business. Any combination of Guice/Chubb at RB, Hernandez/Williams at OL, Jackson/Reid in the secondary… BUSINESS

  14. theodore Says:

    “to take Buffalo to the cleaners”

    Um… Buffalo had an extra first round pick which we didn’t get. I’d take the deal again in a heartbeat, but we didn’t “win” the trade. It was a fair deal.

    And I totally applaud Licht for pulling it off. The teams immediately behind us were trade down targets too. AZ and BUF had choices.

  15. Trench War Says:

    The Browns picking Denzel Ward made our trade possible. I think it prompted Denver to take Chubb, and the Colts to take Nelson. Thank you Cleveland North

  16. SCBucsFan Says:

    Scotty the same writers who butcher a mock draft every year?

  17. Tampabucfan88 Says:

    guice is the pick I feel it he will be there the Giants have to fix there line the so do the Browns and Indy will they still need a tackle and a LB so I believe guice will be there also this draft is deep with DB so get a DB with the second 2nd round pick and end it with either nick Chubb or Ronald jones if u guy say Jason won’t double up remember he did it before with marppet and smith trust the licht everyone

  18. NFLRealist Says:

    BREAKING: Bucs tried to deal back into the bottom of the 1st with the Pats to get Guice and were turned down; Eagles had already traded their pick.

    Look for the Bucs to trade ahead of the Colts (who have also expressed an interest in Guice) to get Guice with #34, #35, or #36 via trade.

    Believe me or not. 🙂 I have a solid source on this one.

  19. lambchop Says:

    Rick Stroud suspected it was Vita.

  20. Trench War Says:

    Yahoo is a rag and their opinions don’t mean Sh|t. Vea will be a productive player on this team for a long time. Good pick

  21. BringBucsBack Says:

    Yeah Joe’s, I remember it differently too. Evans was virtually the consensus as he was slotted to go around our pick and he filled a great need. Winston was all but in the bag prior to the draft. Didn’t Winston even wear a Bucs shirt to his interview with the Titans? Jameis going to the Bucs was the worst kept secret. As I remember even Hargraves was strongly rumored to come here, him having the best backpedal and fluid hips in over 200 years. Nobody saw OJ coming! Vea too was a surprise!

    What they did keep under wraps though, was is a kicker in the second!? No one saw that coming and some of us still can’t see it!

  22. BucFanFromOh Says:

    I’m still pretty ticked we passed on Derwin James for Vita. I know a lot of you like Vita, but I don’t think it was really a need and freaking Chris Conte is still a starter.

  23. The Buc Realist Says:

    The “real” answers where out there from those within the know!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The Buc Realist Says:
    January 19th, 2018 at 9:37 am
    Trade down and pick up a “Man among boys” Vita Vea!!!!!!!! switch to a 3-4 for a point of difference in the division!!!!!!!!! and If GMC is not on board,,, trade him!!!!!!!!!!!

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

    The Buc Realist Says:
    April 4th, 2018 at 4:40 pm
    I don’t get some of you!!!! some where jealous and wanted a D-line like the eagles that could bring wave after wave of talent, But then don’t want to draft the Best D-Tackle in the draft because they saw a mock draft with him going at #12 or whatever!!!!!!!!

    Remember what the GM and Head coach have said, they want a Badazz team!!!! We drafting Mount Vea is BadAzz!!!!! Do you want the Bucs to push teams around or get pushed around?????????

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

  24. Gencoimports Says:

    Please don’t trade up or do anything stupid (like drafting a kicker) with those 3 2nd round picks! Too many needs to be addressed.

  25. webster Says:

    @ blake

    I totally agree with you. I remember that off season many on this board asking why would the bucs draft evans when he is a clone of vjax. I believe joe is confused that no one saw the evans pick coming because they were all in on johnny football lol. Many people had evans to the bucs. As for jameis, you had to be a butt hurt mariotta lover not to see that jameis was going to be the pick. The fact that he was a guest at alstott’s celebrity weekend, showed up with an alstot foundation shirt at his meeting with the titans among other hints means you are just blind period if you did not see that coming. Oh and the fact that he was the better qb should have been hint enough but again we are talking buc fans ie butt hurt mariotta lovers.

  26. webster Says:


    Everybody butchers mock drafts. What are you talking about? Mock draft? Truth of the matter, i wanted james too and the only reason why im “ok” with vea is because the bucs have 3 2nd round picks. I would much rather have a dynamic game changer at any position over a run plugger in the 1st round. We will see.

  27. SCBucsFan Says:

    webster I’m saying writers will put anything on paper just to fill the empty space, doesn’t make it true. All it takes to be a journalist now is a iPad and lots of free time with outlandish opinions. Sorry Joe.

  28. Tom Edrington Says:

    I do recall the Joe(s) proclaiming the FSU kid, it’s pretty easy to declare a smokescreen after the smoke has gone away…….Joe(s) got fooled, bit on Derwin James like everyone else……..

    As for the Vita-man, only time will tell, perhaps they’re hoping it will add a year or two to McCoy’s career.

  29. Not there yet Says:

    You mean you really had no clue the bucs were leaning Winston or Mike Evans? Lol guess you too the draft season off in those years

  30. SCBucsFan Says:

    I hold nothing against Joe or any site for not knowing about Vea (Stroud the exception); its the front office’s job to hire people who keep that quiet. Instead of bad job bloggers, good job Bucs front office.

  31. 813bucboi Says:

    I hope licht stays the course and continues to builds the trenches……no way in hell licht should trade up!!!!!

    will hernandez @38
    DE or OT @53
    S or CB at 56

    target k.johnson and bo scarbrough in rounds 4 and 5…..or just call cj Anderson…..

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

  32. Mike Johnson Says:

    Bucs did quite well under the circumstances. All three of the top 3 were off the board. Now we have Xmas in the 2nd rd. 3 players. And there is still great value out there in DB’s RB’s and O line. Even Mike Johnson gotta say, you done good Bucs!!

  33. Pa Privateer Says:

    There was never any smoke except the idiotic draft pundits not paying attention to what the Bucs did in FA. Litch has consistently supported his FA additions with draft prospects, effectively doubling up. The bucs spent a lot of time with CBs in the late 1st through 4th round, not the top of the 1st round.

    NT Vita Vea and DT Taven Bryan were very much on the radar of the bucs in the 1st round. OL was the focus in the mid to late 1st round.

    It was rather easy to see Litch was going to trade back and go with Trenches in the 1st and then DB and RB in the 2nd. You just have to look at Prospects rankings vs Position vs need.

    The only smoke screen was the half-assed effort by the pundits to throw a name on the board for the Bucs pick.

  34. teacherman777 Says:

    Trade both of our 7’s and our 6th for a 3rd.

    or both of our 7’s and a 5th for a 3rd.

  35. The Buc Realist Says:

    While the sheep and so-called fans were talking non-sense and was blinded by the smoke, The Buc Realist knew the truth!!!!!!!!!!!! OMG Its another “Realist Repost”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The Buc Realist Says:
    March 11th, 2018 at 11:10 am
    Safety?????? I thought we were going to fix the “real” problem, the TRENCHES!!!! No one is going to mention Mount Vea???????? I thought we wanted the Bad-azz football team!!!!!!!!! I would even put him in at RB on goal line with a 3 TE Set!!! did anyone see his highschool tape!!!!! Dude was a RB and had wiggle!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Keep focused sheep!!!!! There are smokescreens abound!!!!!!!!!

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

  36. FortMyersDave Says:

    Misdirection is a given in the draft. Mike Williams, Johnny Football. the likelihood Wyche and his people spread the wed rumors concerning Sapp allowing him to free fall past Philly and a few other teams, etc….. I mentioned misdirecton in a post earlier this week and the trolls had a field day, go figure and I thank StPeteBucsFan for simplifying what I posted where most simpletons could fathom… Now Tom Edrington formerly of the Tampa Trib: Did the Joes actually get snaked or did they simply go along with the ruse and laughed as the kow-it-alls on the national level proclaimed Derwin to Tampa as gospel??? I guess only Joe knows and he probably ain’t gonna talk.

    So today, which RB to target, the LSU kid or have a chubby for the remaining Chubb. The kid from BC is also available, One Harold Landry as is a CB from Iowa and a multitude of other talent. Three picks, very nice Mr Licht, very nice indeed!

  37. Pa Privateer Says:

    Buc Fans see RB, CB and OG as the needs for the 2nd round

    Litch’s scouting shows FS, RB and CB

    Look for Litch to trade up in the 3rd for FS Armanti Watts in the late 3rd or WR Desean Hamilton in the 4th

  38. Kobe Faker Says:

    Great 2 2nd round pickup by Licht….


    Buffalo was going to trade with denver and was agreed upon on thursday. when Cleveland went braindead passing on Chubb, Denver backed out of the deal last night and grabbed chubb

    Desparate Buffalo came to Tampa and Licht to the deal….Forrest said…ughh ..OK

    We picked up Danny Sheldon 2.0

    we are the 2017 Cleveland South

    Make or brake day for Forrest Gump

  39. BucFanFromOH Says:

    Is there anything more annoying that all these “Realist Reposts?” Like dude we get it, you are obsessed with yourself and want everyone to know it. Move on.

  40. I’m a Tandyman Bucs Fan Says:

    Bucs Fan From Oh. Don’t worry Tandy will take Conte spot. Smith finally figured out #37 should have been playing after the way he played in 2016. That’s why we didn’t draft James He almost lost his job last year because he didn’t play Tandy. I’m excited how things have gone with Free Agency and the draft. Now get us a strong running back and corner tonight and we are set!!! No excuses this season as we have the personnel to compete with anyone!!!! GO BUCS!!!!!

  41. 813bucboi Says:

    what are the broncos going to do with shane ray?…….I know he’s been hurt quite a bit…..

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

  42. celly Says:

    Given the offseason moves, it’s clear to see where Licht saw the biggest weakness on the team. The front 4 should have pretty fresh legs throughout the whole game, given the way we can rotate in an out.

    More pressure up front can only help the backend, obviously. We’ll definitely use one of these 2nd round picks on a DB. Would love to trade down again and either pick up a 3rd this year or a 1st or 2nd next year.

    I might be able to get my wife a Bucs jersey now, cause she like Vea cause of his hair (she loved Palomalu). When she saw him drafted she said, “i’m going to follow him on Instagram”

  43. FortMyersDave Says:

    I guess Kober Troller would have been happier if the Bucs stood pat and took James or Vita at #7. What a wet blanket.

    And BucFan from Ohio: you and TMax posted a while back how great the Browns would do draftwise and compared to the Bucs in general and I simply pointed out that Cleveland will be Cleveland and will do something idiotic: well no trade down from the Browns, they drafted the QB that should have went 4th instead of #1 and they grabbed a defensive homer from OSU who is a great talent but very likely they could have got him later if they did a trade down as well. Indirectly, the flush em down Browns helped the Bucs, Denver and Indy for varying resluts….

  44. Jason Mclaurin Says:

    The guy just simply blew it. Not Licht but either but James. James kept coming with those constant leaks and even wore red to the war room. Im not leaving the ship either but man I badly wanted D. James or some kind of offensive lineman. That’s all I’m saying about my disappointment. We couldn’t have went wrong no matter who we drafted but Vea was way low on my list. I initially thought when I first saw and heard our name in discussion for Vea that he was just a 3-4 guy but I relooked the way our dline set up. We got the two speedy edge rushers,(Curry, Spence, JPP) for this guy to just faze in at the middle. He and McCoy maybe but the way it’s looking if the vets don’t get in the playoffs this year they are out and we are definitely set to see a different Bucs team and guys way less demanding too. This team is really searching for good people and I’m not mad at that but be careful what you ask for sometimes because low tempered personalities lead to low temper results.

  45. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    I’m consfused BucFan! You do realize we now have 3 second round picks don’t you? Are you saying to use a later round pick on a RB or our last pick in the 2nd round?

  46. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    That is amazing Kobe. I had no idea you were in the Broncos war room lost. You are a complete tool!

  47. BucFanFromOH Says:

    TouchDownTampaBay Says:
    April 27th, 2018 at 12:17 pm
    I’m consfused BucFan! You do realize we now have 3 second round picks don’t you? Are you saying to use a later round pick on a RB or our last pick in the 2nd round?

    Sorry for the confusion! Basically I was saying keep all 3 of our 2nd rounders and use the remaining picks in rounds 4-7 as trade ammo to move up higher in the 2nd round. By “last pick” I meant our last pick in the 2nd round.

  48. Gman Says:

    Buc Realist is very insecure….he has to prove to a bunch of strangers on a message board who also know very little, that of the many things he has spouted…he got a couple correct.

  49. SOEbuc Says:

    @Scotty in Fat Antonio

    “Per Yahoo article this morning. Gave the Bucs the lowest 1st round grade.

    12) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: DT Vita Vea, Washington – They passed up Derwin James for Vea, who is good at what he does (plugging the middle) but isn’t going to add much pass rush value in a division with Matt Ryan, Cam Newton and Drew Brees. Grade: D+”

    Just one more thing to show national media knows jack sh!t about the Bucs and what we need. What was it? 6.5 ypc or something against our worst d-line in the league last year? Vea and GMC in the middle seems like a single breeze won’t be able to pass through. Yahoo gets an F- for grading the draft.

    P.S. I’m dying for Jessie Bates.

  50. SOEbuc Says:

    Tandyman bucs fan

    “Now get us a strong running back and corner tonight and we are set!!!”

    Definintley not set. Don’t have a right side of our offensive line for your strong RB to get through.

  51. Dapostman Says:

    3 picks in round two tonight. CB is a priority. Hopefully we grab one. A RB and OL should round out this trio. There are still 3 veteran safetys in the free agent market. I would rather see one of them than a draft safety. Go Bucs!!!

  52. I’m a Tandyman Bucs Fan Says:

    SOEBuc…..Maybe Forrest Licht has got another rabbit up his sleeve!!! Hope so tonight. Get us a right guard or tackle tonight Jason for my stud running back to get up in that hole and take it to Da House Babeeeee!!! Go Bucs!!!!