The Beckwith Puzzle

August 7th, 2018

Man without a position?

Andy Benoit sensed this since the day the Bucs drafted Kendell Beckwith.

The LSU product is coming off ankle surgery after a car wreck in mid-April. Beckwith told Joe last week he is expected to run sometime this week to gauge the success of his rehab. Depending on how his ankle holds up in the running tests will determine his next step in the path towards getting back on the field.

If Beckwith has yet another outstanding second season, Benoit, of, wrote last year that he believes another Bucs linebacker will be moved. Benoit is still of the same mind.

Last year’s third-round pick Kendell Beckwith who is still getting over an April ankle fracture, had a nice rookie season, but it’s hard to see where he fits moving forward. He played a lot at defensive end last November and December, but that said more about Tampa Bay’s front four than him. Beckwith’s NFL future is at linebacker, but unless he pushes Alexander or David out of nickel packages (highly unlikely), he’ll be constricted to playing in base situations, which means 15-20 snaps a game.

What we don’t know is if Beckwith was drafted, in part, as insurance in case middle linebacker Kwon Alexander bolts after the season. He, along with Donovan Smith and Ali Marpet could all become unrestricted free agents in 2019.

Benoit, last year, even speculated Lavonte David could be a cap casualty.

Joe does know this: Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht is going to have to make very tough decisions in the next few months. He won’t be able to keep Alexander, Marpet and Smith and stay under the salary cap unless he unloads some other players and their salaries.

Famed columnist Ira Kaufman said at the time the Bucs signed DeSean Jackson, he would not see the end of his three-year contract with the Bucs. This is Jackson’s second year.

FYI, David could be released without any salary cap hit. His current contract expires at the end of the 2020 season.

Given how David’s salary rose $2 million this year and will hit over $10 million in 2020, he is ripe to have his contract restructured.

26 Responses to “The Beckwith Puzzle”

  1. Trench War Says:

    I think the Sage is correct. DJax will be traded or released. We have a strong stable of homegrown WR’s which makes DJax expendable. This will be Fitz’s last season also unless he signs veteran minimum as a backup. They will probably tag Winston unless he comes back with a vengeance.

  2. Trench War Says:

    ..and Grimes last season as well probably

  3. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Yeah quite the predicament. Fortunately Grimes, DJax, Gholston, and Fitz will be a nice chunk. I could also see one of the new starting D-lineman being gone.
    Not to be pessimistic but one of them will be expendable if Spence and/or Vea prove to be the real deal. Plus law of averages and just Bucs FA history suggests that someone wont pan out for whatever reason.

    Bottom line you pay Kwon and Ali.
    Give Smith top 10 money. If he wants more he has to be elite this season. I mean the best LT.
    LVD needs restructuring ONLY if we have to.
    That man has earned his pay and lets not pretend he isn’t still elite top 3 4-3 OLB.
    Go BUCS!!

  4. Bigbucfan90 Says:

    Now I’m starting to wonder is vea insurance for McCoy? I don’t want to see McCoy go I think he’s one of the most underrated player at his position but I’d rather have David stay over anything. Idk this next offseason contracts are going to be insane

  5. Bucs_in_Spain Says:

    I was working this through on Spotrac the other day. Ignoring Winston, you’ve got to find about $40-45m: Smith $15m, Marpet $10-12m, Kwon, $8-10.

    Godwin, to replace DJax, that’s clear. $10m
    As much as I hate to say it, Vea is probably replacing McCoy. $13m ($23 in the bag)
    Cappa or Benenoch to replace Dot. $5m. ($34m)
    Gholston not really performing $3.75m ($38m, getting in range)
    You’re then probably giving awkward glances towards JPP, Curry or David. Most likely Curry. $8m ($46m)

  6. Buc believer Says:

    @BigBucFan90…… Did I understand you correctly when you said McCoy was underrated? I think I would use the terms over hyped, self promoting, under achiever, and way over paid before I would use underrated.

  7. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “He (Licht) won’t be able to keep Alexander, Marpet and Smith and stay under the salary cap unless he unloads some other players and their salaries.” LOTS & LOTS of different scenarios for Licht to work through, but the performance by each of those (and other) players this year will determine the outcome IMO. None of us can predict how that’ll all unfold at this point.

    Unloading “some other players and their salaries” will most likely be done regardless. Although the CAP will surely go up again this year, Bucs don’t have breathing room any longer. There are a very limited number of ways to fix that (cutting players, renegotiating salaries and/or going over the CAP for a year). DJax is almost surely a goner next year, as is Gholston. Wouldn’t at all be surprised to see LVD’s & GMC’s contracts renegotiated (they’d both end up taking less if they signed with someone else anyways). Jameis’ 5th year option will almost surely be picked up ($21 mil is still cheaper than paying for a new contract).

    Bucs have several other Unrestricted FAs that we’ll either have to re-sign or replace also. Players like Fitz, Griffin, Humphries, Conte, Rodgers & Sims, Clarke. Not huge contracts each, but when added all up it’s still a chunk of change. If we win this year, figuring out who to re-sign or replace is a nice problem to have. If we lose, many would be replaced anyways. I’d rather see us win personally.

  8. AlabamaBucFan Says:


    I think you can add $10m for Grimes, 2.2 mil for Evan Smith, and I don’t think 3m Humphries will be kept next year as we are loaded at WR.

    McCoy or Lavonte David will have to restructure their contracts.

  9. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I hate it but LVD is tradeable……we aren’t used to having to do this but teams all over the league have cap casualties…and David is the likely candidate. Restructure his contract and then trade him for a 4th rounder.
    We have several other very capable LBs to fill in.

  10. HFXBUC Says:

    And add another 10 – 12 million as the cap increases.

  11. HFXBUC Says:

    And factor in contract structure where you can manipulate the amount of space a player actually accounts against the cap in a given year, typically the first year, and the Bucs are fine.

  12. Bobby M. Says:

    These are the situations that the Patriots would trade a quality player for draft picks. If we just cut them, I’ll be disappointed. I’ve been saying we should unload McCoy and Jackson….but particularly Jackson. I like our depth at WR….would rather lose Jackson then the cheaper talent we have developing. David would be a tough one to part ways with but between he and McCoy, i think McCoy has the greater impact on the game.

  13. Bird Says:

    Gholston -7; desean Jackson- 11; grimes – 8; the worst of the recent dline guys gone ; Evan smith – 3 mil gone. Conte – 3/4 mil gone; Dotson 4/5 mil gone.

    Also , I see McCoy being the nice guy and stepping up to redo contract ; he will do it cause he has been paid well and been injured quite often throughout career. He has made more then he ever could have imagined.

    LVD is best defender. Until he starts showing age , then you have to keep this kid.

  14. andrew Says:

    His reps, like many other positions, will depend on the team we are playing and that team’s personnel. Unfortunately, i think this ankle will be a big step back for him throughout the year.

  15. Broy34 Says:

    We will be fine. Plenty of wiggle room

  16. Pick6 Says:

    he’s in year 2. Lavonte is in year 7? 8? this will work itself out. and by the way kwon has a trend of not playing 16 games a season, and lavonte has missed a game or two in recent seasons or at least been slowed down at times.

  17. Big Country Says:

    D Jax and Golston will be gone which will help tremendously .

  18. BigMacAttack Says:

    Let’s get it started. Licht will get it figured out. Gholston can go along with EDS. Conte can go and so can Dot. Draft an OT in the first round, safety in second. If Smith won’t move to RT get rid of him too. I’d keep all four LBs because they’re going to need them. Nickel is overrated at times.

  19. Bucfan1989 Says:

    Kwon isn’t going anywhere joe lol dumb to even say such a thing

  20. Bucsfanman Says:

    This is another good “problem” to have. There will be some interesting decisions on the horizon.

  21. SOEbuc Says:

    We’ll likely have to drop one of our good younger WRs this year because we have the best, deepest WR corp in the league. Hoping it’s not gonna be Watson. I’d really like to see if he can turn into something special. Next year, let DJax go and DO NOT give Donovan Smith a bunch of money that will effect giving money to better position players unless he can prove he’s extremely worthy this year. Might have to let Hump go next year if the calculations don’t match up. DO NOT drop LVD next year unless he has a major injury this year that effects his future play. He was the best player on defense last year.

  22. SOEbuc Says:

    DO NOT resign Brent Grimes next year. If these rookies can show they’ve got some stuff and not just total busts, than we will have a deep CB corp. It’s only training camp but M.J. Stewart has been showing up left and right and I believe him when he says “he really wants it.”

  23. SOEbuc Says:

    @Bobby M.

    “David would be a tough one to part ways with but between he and McCoy, i think McCoy has the greater impact on the game.”

    Gonna have to disagree. LVD had 5 FF last year and GMC was on a league worst 22 sack d-line that has been revamped with good players so he’s more expendable. LVD is still PRIMO LB in the league and doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon.

  24. Bigbucfan90 Says:

    @buc believer yes I did say underrated he might not get all the sacks that you think a lineman of his caliber gets but he always takes up the whole middle it isn’t his fault the rest of the line was incompetent of getting the job done. But we will see this year me personally I think this is the year that McCoy tops 10 SACKS

  25. Trey Says:

    We need to let Smith go. He’s proven he’s a average to below average LT in this league. Draft another LT next year in the first round and call it a day.

  26. BDorry Says:

    Beckwith is not close to the athlete than Kwon and Alexander are…he’s a textbook SAM in a 4-3.