Cap Space Update

March 18th, 2019

The Bucs’ cap space problem may not be as horrible as we once thought.

It is still bad, though.

The discount rack is where the 5-11 Bucs must shop because they are paying so much in salary — and they probably need at least $8 million in salary cap room to sign their upcoming draft picks. But Albert Breer of got his mitts on a report issued Sunday that suggests the Bucs are not in the worst pinch.

The problem with the Bucs is that of the other 10 teams in this boat with the Bucs, all but two have had winning seasons recently. And unlike the Bucs, the other two teams don’t have a quarterback.

If you have a franchise quarterback and a salary cap-busting budget and still manage to lose 22 games in the past two years, that’s not exactly a shining example of team building. Either that, or it was an example of lousy coaching.

We will find out in a nine months which is which.

43 Responses to “Cap Space Update”

  1. Defense Rules Says:

    This is great news Joe. This Cap number is a tad over $5 mil MORE than what Spotrac is saying that we have. After releasing 6-8 players of our Top-51 to make room for the 6-8 draft picks we’ll likely keep, we should have enough to actually pay our draft picks.

    What I don’t understand though is why you think we’ll find out in 9 months whether the Bucs have suffered from poor team building OR poor coaching. Personally I think we’ve been victimized by BOTH.

  2. isrBuc Says:

    What’s the secret of teams like NO that seems to have big names all around but no cap issues?
    I envy the dolphins. they will be back in it before we do. it’s the browns way and it’s the only way to turn things around.

  3. Not there yet Says:

    Browns have had a top 3 pick like 7 years in a row they just finally found a gm who knows how to get the right guy with their first pick. Apparently licht idea of success is resigning his own draft picks no matter how much they suck or the team finishes in the nfc south basement. Glazers let Lovie find licht so that’s not on them but all the coaches they’ve hired since chucky

    Defense rules is dead on we’ve been victimized by both just not to the extent Browns have. No one remembers all those horrible drafts, coaches and gm’s because they appear to have a winning roster

  4. DooshLaRue Says:

    I like the Browns…… put UNTIL they start winning….. they are STILL


  5. teacherman777 Says:

    Jameis needs to sign a team friendly extension.

    Fu** Joe Flacco and his team killing contract after they won the Super Bowl. His contract set the Ravens back by years!!!

    Tom Brady has been signing team-friendly contracts his whole career!

    Jameis needs to follow in the footsteps of Brady.

    Jameis says he a team-first guy, well lets see it with his extension!

    Sign a contract to be the 18th highest paid QB in the league for the next 5 years.

    Then, if he outplays his contract, he will still only be 30 years old by the end of this extension. So, we will have another chance for a huge extension.

    If the Bucs want to be great, Jameis MUST sign a reasonable extension.

    Go Bucs!!

  6. Justafan Says:

    Isr. We don’t have cap issues. We can easily restructure contracts, and spend up to 20 M if we wanted too. We structure contracts differently in Tampa Bay. They try to avoid dead cap situations, and that is why it appears that we have cap issues. When Gerald McCoy signed his deal he only got around 15 million in guarantees, but he is still under contract for 3 more years, even though he has no more guaranteed money. If we had given him a bigger signing bonus, we would have more cap space today. We could also restructure his contract to give him.guaranteed

  7. Justafan Says:

    money over the next three years, at a lower price point. Which is what really should happen, no sense in letting him walk, when you can keep him for cheaper.
    Teams also sign players to longer terms, like 6 years, to spread out the cap hit on a signing bonus, and to take advantage of the salary cap yearly increase.

  8. Bucsfanman Says:

    Defense Rules- 100% agreed. We’ve been victimized by both terrible team-building and coaching. No culture and no leadership have brought us to this point. Lets hope that a strong coaching influence will permeate and influence the direction of the team.

    It’s NOT about the name on the back of the jersey. It’s about the right football players for your football team.

  9. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    Title should be “Dunce Cap Update”

  10. Bird Says:

    Two bargain deals left –
    Free Safety tre Boston will only cost around 2-3 mil
    Corner morris Claiborne only will cost around 5 mil

    That way they can cross off those 2 areas of need for draft –

    At draft focus on Dline /middle line backer / outside rush backer / oline guard

    And draft either hunter renfrow and/or running back.
    They can still cut a guy / renegotiate contracts to make up difference

  11. Bob in Valrico Says:

    IMO, we have to overhaul both how we build the team and how we manage
    the capital. Lets face it if you pay big front loaded signing bonuses ,you can run
    team building problems as well.Especially when those players signed don’t play up to expectations or become injured and the team forks out big bucks to injured players like Sweezy and Revis to rehab on or off the field.

  12. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Lousy coaching
    Dave Campo…I mean Dirk Koetter, is back where he belongs

  13. Rob Says:

    I, for one, don’t have a problem with the Bucs being in salary cap hell. At least we are spending all of our money and not hoarding it. My problem is that the GM has made horrific personnel decisions regarding free agent signings which has crippled the Bucs. Too many swings and misses for me. No one gets all of the right but my God, the Bucs free agent signings have been just terrible. Go Bucs!

  14. Bird Says:

    Does anyone know ?

    Has Donald penn ever played guard?
    He is 6’5 while most guards are closer to 6’2 6’3
    But it’s not like he is 6’7 like a lot of tackles.

    He is old. But stilll mean. And so much better then Benenoch. Just curious.
    He could be had for cheap 2-3 mil a year and they could draft guard in late 3 or 4th and not have to rush.

    They just need to focus on defense so bad. Almost with first 3 picks

    And they could say bye bye to Evan smith.

  15. Bird Says:

    Or Penn could take snaps at right tackle and best player wins.

    He would come back to Tampa in heart beat.
    Especially since it appears they are keeping McCoy for one more year

  16. DislocatedBucsFan Says:

    Or….. your QB that you overpaid is no better than Tannehill. You said in a previous article about Fitz. I cannot recall if you or Arians made the statement. apparently Fitz was a distraction for Jameis? Jameis’s poor play was a result of trying to match or beats Fitz’s performance. No “franchise QB” should be upstaged or punked by a journeyman QB. He should have hit the market and we found a way to snag Foles. At least Foles can perform at a high level in high caliber games.

  17. FairMinded Says:

    Is cap expected to go up this offseason?

  18. Bobby M. Says:

    There is no justification of having a GM in place that has produced ONE winning season, 4 seasons in last place, no playoff appearances, likely made the biggest joke a of draft trade for Robert Aguayo and now sits with cap issues for a team that’s gone back to back 5-11 seasons. Licht is mediocre to avg in the draft and the few gems he does find, we lose to free agency because he cant afford to keep them.

    Malcom Glazer took over the team and in 7 yrs built it from the laughing stock of the NFL, to a Super Bowl champion. Since his children took control, it went from a consistent playoff contender to the worst team in the league.

  19. D-Rome Says:

    The Bucs don’t have a franchise QB. He’ll be a franchise QB if and only if he gets the $120+ million dollar contract.

  20. AlteredEgo Says:

    D-Rome Says:
    March 18th, 2019 at 8:09 am
    The Bucs don’t have a franchise QB. He’ll be a franchise QB if and only if he gets the $120+ million dollar contract.
    Patrick Mahomes will sign a 200 million contract in 2020….he is a franchise QB..
    Jameis has put up NOTHING except distorted stats . After 5 years you are either a “starter” or a journeyman NFL QB…a ton is riding on the 2019 season

  21. straightcashhomey Says:


    Where oh where did you get all that (borrowed and stolen cuz written prior) insight from those two posts above???It sure sounds a hell of a lot like a certain someone else on here prior, shedding that same light prior….hmmm. And no, you haven’t said anything of the sort prior, and it was a rather new take earlier by another poster…soo. Where again??

    Just a small major bit!

    Lol, you people sometimes.

  22. ben Says:

    WHY aren’t buc fans screaming for Lights head ?? a bad team for years and no money ,,, WHAT A JOKE !!!!!!! ..

  23. Dan Says:

    Because Ben for some reason most seem to accept Licht and all the loosing as acceptable. I totally agree with you. Why aren’t we talking anlut the guy who put us here with lousy drafting and multiple misses in FA

  24. TOM Says:

    Yeah the Bucs spend money but the problem is they don’t spend it wisely. How many times has the team been to the playoffs with McCoy? 0 Better ways to spend 13mil. Resigning D. Smith at a ridiculous salary. Waste of money. Dotson signing. Waste of money. Gholston. Waste of money. Get my drift? I don’t care if Vince Lombardi was HC they will not get to 500. Thanks Licht for all the great signings. (idiot)

  25. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    You can express justifiable frustration all you like over Jason Licht’s mistakes….but you are stuck with him for at least another year…….so, get it out of your system.

    The good news is that Licht is surrounded by many competent coaches who can coach up his mistakes and guide him to better future decisions.

    This FA has BA & Co. decisions all over it……cant’ you tell?

  26. Larry Says:

    5 & 11 for 2 straight years and STILL over the cap. PATHETIC!!! The Bucs should not be over the cap and still have losing seasons. That problem is squarely on the shoulders of the GM. He is in charge of the purse strings, NOT the coach. There have been far too many bad drafts and bad free agency signings, FOR TOO MUCH MONEY!!! You don’t have to be a mathematical genius to figure that out. Bad management and bad coaching have lead the Bucs to where they are now.

  27. SkBucsFan Says:

    You are preaching to the choir here Ben. It amazes me how Licht can keep his job after the glaring f@&! ups he has had in the 2nd round. (Some would argue 1st round too ). That combined with a losing record yet very little cap space.
    GM’s on other teams have been fired for less. Makes one wonder what kind of evidence he has on the Glazer boys.

  28. Guzzie Says:

    Zero hits in free agency, only guy average was the punter, he’s holds on to declining vets a year too long, and pays them huge money, VJax, DrugMart, Grimes, now Brate and McCoy this year, you trying to tell me most GMS can’t find a DT get 6 sacks for way under 13 million, that’s 2 starting caliber players, or paying a backup TE in an offense with an elite talent ahead of him and an offense that doesn’t feature TEs anyways, 20 million on those 2 guys, what a joke

  29. Guzzie Says:

    Wish I was a Browns fan lol

  30. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    These QBs who seem team friendly actually got be contracts. They restructure each year because it puts more money in their pocket immediately and spreads it over the remaining years. That’s what Brees has been doing.

    He still got paid, but the bulk of his cap hit come next year…the final year of his contract.

  31. BucEmUp 7 Says:

    Its coaching not talent. Arians and bowles will win ten games this year

  32. 813bucboi Says:

    we’ve been a victim of poor coaching which has made each selection by the GM look horrible…..poor coaching combined with playing players out of position and in the wrong scheme has made every draft pick look horrible and has made players look like their all bust…..

    we’ve already heard from BA and others that benenoch is better suited for tackle and our CB’s are better suited for man press…..poor coaching, the lack of development and wrong schemes have made the team look worse than it really is…..

    and it looks like BA has mostly agreed that this team has enough talent to win now since the major turnover has yet to take place…’ll be a night and day difference with BA’s new scheme and player development…..


  33. 813bucboi Says:



    i agree…..

    its been coaching/scheme not talent/players…..

    sure licht has whiffed some but the lack of coaching and development has screwed him over…..i find it hard to believe that the glazers would keep licht knowing he cant find decent players……


  34. Siege the Bay Says:

    You can’t be a bad team, and be broke!! How does that even happen? What is wrong with Licht? I’m a fan of his, but this is just plain dumb.

  35. Nick2 Says:

    Which leads us back to Gerald McCoy. Take him away and we have $13 million back in cap space. We haven’t won since he has arrived. Leadership has decided hes part of the answer and not the problem so as many head coaches as he has seen come and go I would hope its his time to help make this team a winner or else.

  36. ATrain Says:

    So we have a Cap problem and we have a 31 year old DT making 14 million


    Can trade GMC because no one will pay this (that’s why he is still here)

    Cut him and resign or give him the option of restructuring

    To Keep GMC at 13 mill is insane

  37. Owlykat Says:

    A good example is the present Starting OT for the Titans—Pamphile. Stupid Warhop tabbed him to ever be a Guard when I made the point that his background was as a basketball player in college just like Dotson was and just needed to be developed as a replacement for Dotson when he retired. It didn’t take the Titan’s OL Coach any time at all to see that Pamphile’s career had been warped by Warhop and they taught Pamphile to play Tackle in their system and were rewarded for it because when their starting LT went down last year they trusted Pamphile to fill his shoes and he made a great showing that he could start as a LT. So when D. Smith was causing an injury to Jameis by letting a speed rusher by him without yelling a warning to Jameis and when D. Smith was stopping drives with holding penalties to stop speed rushers who were beating him all Warhop had to do was bench his pet and let Pamphile take
    over. Heck no! He left Pamphile at LG where he knew he was struggling and
    never did try him at LT. He also saw to it Pamphile got no offer so he would not
    be a threat to his pet Smith.

  38. Owlykat Says:

    Oh and Warhop also screwed up by letting Omameh go without developing his potential either and he ended up a starting Guard for the Giants. And there were a lot of other poor coaches that Koetter hired that couldn’t develop their players either. Know how to spot poor development just look at how many players that Licht recruited who looked like busts here who became players on other NFL teams. I remember a second round tall TE who we cut who became a NFL primary TE elsewhere. So you won’t know if Licht brought us good players or not til BA and his assistants get their shot at developing them properly in a system they can thrive in! BA has seen three years of tape on our players including their practice tapes and is living up to his promise to just restock and not churn this roster. He knows how to fix the lack of development of the talent on this roster. I guarantee you he sees GMC as a natural at DE or he would have already traded or cut him. There is no telling for you or I to say how many sacks or pressures GMC can get as a DE in a 3-4 but BA Knows!

  39. RickinFtMyers Says:

    I think, Bruce Arians’ two-practices at the same time throughout OTAs and, although he didn’t specify, training camp maybe will sort this out quickly. The Bucs have been hitting the late early and middle rounds of the draft fairly hard in recent years as well as bringing in a large number of undrafted free agents. Given many of these men start out way down the depth chart, the Bucs really don’t know what they’re getting. So, by giving these unheralded players more reps, BA and his super sized coaching staff should be able to separate the wheat from the chaff.

  40. T REX Says:

    Coaching traded up for Aguayo?

  41. Rod Munch Says:

    Evan Smith is completely worthless and is making $2m, cut him, and you’re draft is covered.

    As for the cap situation the most entertaining one is the Falcons. I mean if you consider the choke artist Matt Ryan a franchise QB, that’s cool and all, but he’s only making like $15m this year – next year it goes up to $33m.

  42. Defense Rules Says:

    Rod … Good point about Matt Ryan. Spotrac shows Ryan’s base salary as only $2.75 mil. Sounds pretty cheap, UNTIL you see the rest … $9.3 mil signing bonus for this year, $2 mil option bonus, $1.75 Restructuring bonus. So he’s really making $15.8 mil which still sounds cheap, EXCEPT THAT his DEAD CAP hit is $58.7 mil. IOW, Matt Ryan got paid upfront and now that dead Cap hit is his job insurance. Falcons can’t afford to cut him, since next year Ryan’s dead Cap value goes UP to $63.4 mil, then drops to ONLY $29.85 mil in 2021, then to $16.8 mil in 2022, and to $3.75 mil in 2023.

    Matt Ryan’s the perfect illustration of why restructuring a contract is VERY risky business for the NFL team, but a good deal for the player. Would you cut Ryan in 2020 knowing that his Cap hit is $33.55 mil but that his Dead Cap hit would be $63.4 mil? You’d have ONE-THIRD of your salary Cap tied up in a player WHO DIDN’T EVEN EXIST ON YOUR ROSTER. Now THAT’S salary Cap hell.

  43. Jameis Almighty! Says:

    Bad drafting by Licht. Fireee Licht!