Bank It

February 7th, 2019

Already counting C-notes.

In a few weeks, the NFL cash register is going to ring, ring, ring for Donovan Smith and he’s going to be able to buy a lot of bling, bling, bling.

Although maybe that’s not in Tampa Bay.po

Kevin Seifert of BSPN looked at the top-50 potential free agents when the free agency dinner bell rings on March 13. He listed the Bucs left tackle at No. 19.

Now there are a lot of Bucs fans hated the Bucs picking Smith in the first place — because an outfit known by a three-letter acronym associated with a tribe that ascribes itself as knowing more about football than Bill Belicheat didn’t like Smith from the moment he stepped off the Penn State campus.

Whether you like Smith or not, Seifert wrote one thing is clear: He’s going to pocket major cash very soon, if not with the Bucs it will be elsewhere.

That’s life in the NFL in 2019, Seifert notes.

Opinions vary on Smith’s effectiveness, but make no mistake: Even competent left tackles rarely make it to the market. When they do, teams line up to pay them big money. Smith could be the next.

This is what it basically boils down to: Does Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht want to roll the dice with Trent Brown and hope he can outbid other teams (if Licht has the cash to be dealt into the poker game) and let Smith dangle, or does he take the safe and maybe the smart route and just slap the franchise tag on Smith?

And just because a team hits a guy with a franchise tag doesn’t mean the team cannot negotiate a new contract with the same player, thereby saving cash upfront and possibly getting the player to agree to a lesser figure than the salary cap amount for a long-term pact. And then there’s always a chance Smith refuses to sign the franchise tag and tries to squeeze the Bucs.

Last year’s franchise tag for an offensive lineman was $14 million.

26 Responses to “Bank It”

  1. Jerry Jones Says:

    Money turns the term “TEAM GUY” on it’s arse, so what’s keeping him here? His agent knows all this so he’s got his ear to the ground. It’s all about whether Arians believes he can work with what he has or not and that all remains to be scene.

  2. Pickgrin Says:

    If Smith was willing to negotiate in the range of what 4 years of tape says he is really worth (which is the 18>22nd best LT range – which is $7-8M per year) – then it would make plenty of sense to try and get him re-signed – with the hope that since he is still youngish – that better coaching and perhaps with BA/Goodwin lighting a fire under his ass to not take plays off – that he could improve…..

    But this dude wants top 10 LT money which means WELL north of $10M per year – more like $13 or $14M per I imagine is what he’s looking for. The franchise tag would be closer to $15.

    He ain’t worth it!

    Let some other team grossly overpay Smith to consistently play matador 2 or 3 times a game and mostly suck at run blocking….

    Once again – I contend that the Bucs are VERY likely to get 85-90% of Donovan Smith’s capability/productivity out of either Wester or Liedtke – for 10% of his expected cost.

    That’s easy math.

    Let Donovan walk and we’ll likely get a 3rd or 4th rd compensatory pick out of the deal as long as we keep our FA losses vs gains ratio in check.

    Draft heavy on OL and DL this year, coach these guys up and put that $14M D. Smith would like the Bucs to pay him – to better use…

  3. Rod Munch Says:

    Yeah, get rid of the young average LT who never misses a game so we have more money to give to a kicker, then we’ll just play it by ear from there. Great plan. LOL!

  4. Pickgrin Says:

    That’s the whole point Munch,. “average LT”. on a good day.

    Doesn’t Winston deserve better than an average LT who wants to get paid like a top 5 guy?

    Trade down – draft the best OT prospect you can identify in the 1st round – let Wester, Liedtke and the rookie battle it out for the starting spot this year and use that $15M to improve the rt side of the OL and bring in a solid vet RB.

  5. tmaxcon Says:

    Rod Munch

    How is overpaying garbage like cancer93 and lvd worked out for bucs…. I’ll tell you those overpaid bums have led one of the most embarrassing NFL defensive units in league history. Let average walk … stop rewarding mediocrity. You people who fall in love with mediocrity are pathetic…. mediocrity keeps bucs earning basement titles in a league filled with greatness

  6. Bird Says:


    You are a huge Jameis supporter if I remember. His numbers have been average and he has been ranked as average since he came in the league. Yet he has been given excuse after excuse , especially needing a real coaching staff to see what he really can do at QB. (Again , The most important position On the field.). He will make 21 mil this year. And 25 mil next if given extension or tag. That seems to be more then ok with a certain group that posts here.

    Donovan Smith has been average and has been ranked as average. Don’t you think he may need to be given a better coaching chance then George Warhop. The guy who must have naked pictures of the glazer family members and has kept his job for mediocrity these last few year.

    Why doesn’t he get a chance when Jameis gets every chance so far. And pretty sure smith hasn’t had any other off field distractions nor missed a game.

    I think both players should be given one more year – prove it to me that this organization deserves to give you elite money for better then average play.

  7. teacherman777 Says:

    Tag him or let him walk!

    Lets get our first “compensatory” draft pick in YEARS!!

  8. mesh Says:

    Franchise him AND draft a left tackle early. Jonah Williams would be my choice but i wouldn’t cry over Ford or Taylor either. You could probably trade down and get an extra pick and still get your choice.

  9. Defense Rules Says:

    @Pickgrin … “Trade down – draft the best OT prospect you can identify in the 1st round – let Wester, Liedtke and the rookie battle it out for the starting spot this year and use that $15M to improve the rt side of the OL and bring in a solid vet RB.”

    Despite some saying that Bucs have ‘plenty of money to fix this mess’ I think the reality is that we’re in a pickle right now. We have some quality starters & key rotational players under contract, but we’ve got quite a few ‘holes’ right now (such as MLB) plus a number of ‘question-marks’ (players who COULD be very good, but we don’t know that for sure at this point). And we don’t have enough money to simply buy our way out of the pickle.

    The most critical position we have ‘open’ on offense right now IMO is LT. If we can’t protect Jameis’ blind side he’s not gonna take any giant steps forward this year. We know what we’ve got in Donovan at LT (good & bad, but with a LOT of POTENTIAL). Wester is a RFA right now, but is a big unknown quantity (he’s been on our roster for 3 years but was in on only 116 offensive plays last year … 10%). Liedtke is a ERFA right now & is an even bigger unknown quantity (on roster for 2 years but was only in on THREE offensive plays altogether in 2018).

    Agree with you Pickgrin about using our Rnd #1 pick on “the best OT prospect” we can identify (preferably an LT prospect), but I think we need to franchise tag Donovan Smith also. It’ll surely cost us $14-$15 mil, but we’re in a pickle. By doing BOTH we ‘fix’ 2 of our 3 OLine NEEDS (LT, RT & Guard) for this year. Let this coaching staff work its magic (with Cappa too) trying them at various OLine positions & let’s see what we’ve got when the smoke clears.

  10. Joeypoppems Says:

    Tag him and see what the new staff can get out of him. Going into fa needing 3 starters on the OL is not a smart idea

  11. BucEmUp 7 Says:

    what about the transition tag?

    Smith is going to be hard to replace. This guy just needs better leadership and a reason to play his best. Many players who woukd guve their best for a good team that gives them a real chance to win and just putnit on cruise control with bad teams. Thats just the way it is. Good coaching and a defensive change will breath fresh air into all these guys

  12. Jonzey Says:

    Tag him now and let him prove himself

  13. John J Barse Says:

    no way you can tag this guy. He’s not worth that kind of money. We need to draft a LT and start fresh not to mention we need cap room. Jackson, Smith and yes McCoy needs to be let go. None of them are worth the money. We have too many overall needs to be paying these guys over 10 mil each.

  14. Wausa Says:

    Bucs have too many holes to let him go
    They should tag him

  15. Bird Says:

    Over /under that tmaxicon uses the word cancer93 :

    1,000 times this year.

    Ladies and gentleman , I give you the broken record that is tmaxinathong

  16. Mort Says:

    If we tag him, they’re gonna want 14 mill per year as a starting point for that contract. Not saying we shouldn’t, just know that’s the reality.

  17. Loyaltotheend Says:

    Only in pro sports is mediocrity over paid

  18. Robert Says:

    Pay the man.

    yall dont wanna pay someone who has above average play, but wanna throw 20 mill at a thug who’s blown several seasons


  19. Bobby M. Says:

    Of all things that you shouldn’t “coach up” for a LT, effort is by far the one thing that has to occur naturally….especially in a contract year. Smart move is draft a LT and save the money for other areas. I’ll take an unpolished blue chip prospect with hustle over an avg vet with questions about effort and focus. The young guy wants to get paid….Smith and his agent are convinced he’s getting paid either way and guys that have that mindset are often problems. My gut feeling is there’s some bitterness from Smith that Marpet got a new deal before him and he’s fine with moving to a team that wants him.

  20. SOEbuc Says:

    I don’t understand what the argument about keeping him is. If Smith is so good and deserves a fat contract, why have we had such a terrible oline for so long with him playing the most important spot on the oline at LT? And people are not giving Liedtke and Wester their due credit. They were both great in TC and PS last year, especially when Liedtke dominated in Game 3 of the PS playing 85% of the snaps against starters and second string. Draft a LT in the second round and let those three go at it. Need to start fresh with LT,RG,and RT if they were smart. Smith should be playing OG. He’s fat, slow, and gets ran around by fast edge rushers all day and they are getting better every year.

  21. SOEbuc Says:


    “How is overpaying garbage like cancer93 and lvd worked out for bucs…. I’ll tell you those overpaid bums have led one of the most embarrassing NFL defensive units in league history.”

    Only NFL smarts you got is in your D. LVD is an overpriced bum??? He’s been the MVP of this defense for many years. Send him to a team with a good defense and he’s one of the best LBs in the game again.

  22. 813bucboi Says:

    keep an eye on mid round OL martez ivey, tytus howard, chuma edoga….


  23. tmaxcon Says:

    Bird and SOE



    The only broken record you hear is your support and defense of career losers….

    Lvd has not played a complete season since schiano left…

    Both are PROVEN mentally weak career losers who have Never won a single meaningful game in their careers….


  24. Bucsfanman Says:

    Bobby M.- “Effort”! That’s the key word right there. Smith does not put all his effort into ALL plays, and as you mention, in a contract year.
    If I had not seen it multiple times with my own eyes, I might be more inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt. But I saw it. That’s the very definition of the player we shouldn’t want.
    The problem is that the Bucs have lots of issues to sort out. We already need a RT and a RG. LT suddenly becomes a question mark and we have cap issues and limited draft capital. It’s a problem.

  25. BucThatNoise Says:

    I don’t envy the Bucs right now. The new coaches are likely combing through a Ken Burns documentary worth of footage on Smith to determine what to do with him. And they’re not giving away any tells on which way they’re leaning.

    Whatever they do will be vilified by a large portion of the fanbase. No options exist right now that will make anyone happy, whether resign/overpay, franchise, or release. And they don’t have a Plan B presently on roster, no matter what anyone thinks of the backups like Wester and Liedtke.

    If it were me, I’d trade down a few spots and take either Jonah Williams or Greg Little, depending on who’s left and what picks the Bucs acquire or trade. Wouldn’t stick my head in the oven if they resigned Smith, but unless they think last year was an anomaly — caused by the ineffectiveness of Warhop and also in part by the often-woeful play of the right side of the line — I think the new generation of speedy pass rushers will continue to get the better of Smith, whose footwork is just plain plodding and won’t improve no matter who is coaching him.

  26. Hodad Says:

    It’s hard to argue with tmax because he’s right about David, and McCoy. Sapp, and Brooks helped turn our defense into a championship, David, and McCoy bottom feeding career losers. Might as well throw Kwon in with them. Let’s pay him 10 million to lead us into the future of losing. Raise your standards. Paying top dollar for career losers gets you back, to back 5-11 seasons nothing more. Paid the great Marpet 10 million this year, didn’t even sniff a pro bowl, or all pro title. Q. Nelson did both as a rookie. Smith 14 million, what a joke, no pro bowls in that mans future either. Rather role with a team of hard playing rooks then these over paid losers.