Tap Dancing

March 1st, 2019

Careful wording.

In the forum of public speaking, NFL types must be careful walking through the minefield as any mistake can be taken the wrong way by owners, coaches, players, agents and even fans.

So that was the box Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht found himself in earlier this week when discussing the team with Bucs reporters at the Indiana Convention Center in downtown Indianapolis.

Licht said throughout the nearly 20-minute sitdown that he wanted this Bucs player back and that Bucs player back. OK, fine.

Then, Licht was pressed. If he wanted so many players back from a team that has won just 10 games in the past two years, that would suggest to the fans the players on the roster were not being coached up. Right?

Licht tried to wiggle off the hook.

“I don’t want to speak for the fans,” Licht explained, “I will say we spent a lot of money on free agents. Sometimes you hit on a couple but for the most part some of these high-priced guys haven’t really worked out. What we [will] do [is] not necessarily reflective of what we think of the talent on the team. It is just a process of making the team better.”

Joe isn’t sure what Licht specifically meant other than he didn’t want to throw anyone under the bus, players or coaches.

When the conversation came to the struggles of the secondary, Joe asked Licht if it was as simple as the defensive backs not being put into position to succeed by the previous coaching staff, which was run out of Tampa at the end of the season.

Licht refused to out any defensive coaches saying he had too much respect for them.

But the proof is in the pudding. To the best of Joe’s knowledge, only Brentson Bucker on the defensive staff got another NFL job after being axed in Tampa Bay. Mike Smith is now calling AAF TV games for the NFL Network and has retired from coaching. Jon Hoke is coaching at Maryland. Mark Duffner is currently unemployed.

That’s all you need to know.

24 Responses to “Tap Dancing”

  1. tbbucs3 Says:

    Im curious as to who Licht has ever actually hit on in free agency?

  2. Dewey Selmon Says:

    That’s a good question bucs3. JPP was a trade. Jensen is still up for debate.

  3. 813bucboi Says:

    i sound like a broken record….lol….it was coaching and scheme not talent and players…..

    but some refuse to believe it….dont worry, BA will show you…..lol…

    add a couple pieces on offense(RB & RG)….add some depth for the defense and we should take off….


  4. D-Rome Says:

    Backstabbin’ Jason Licht’s record speaks for itself. He constructs rosters as if it’s fantasy football.

  5. BucsFIRE Says:

    I was about to rip into ya tbbucs3 with a couple of rapid fire names as I am sitting here at work……… and it was like… think! think! think!

    Hmmm…. guess that was sort of your point, lol.

  6. BucsFIRE Says:

    Exactly Dewey, Jensen is still up for debate.
    Hopefully he will work out great.

  7. Youngbucs Says:

    I’d say JPP is about it?

  8. BucsFIRE Says:

    JPP was a trade.

  9. D-Rome Says:

    add a couple pieces on offense(RB & RG)….add some depth for the defense and we should take off…

    You’re talking out of both sides here. If it was coaching and scheme then the Bucs can bring back the same exact roster and win. If you have to add a couple of pieces on offense and depth on defense then the GM failed to put together a good roster.

    Which, of course, is my point when I say Backstabbin’ Jason Licht builds teams like it’s fantasy football. Lots of talent at premiere positions but there are holes everywhere, especially with depth.

  10. doolnutts Says:

    I mean just looking at the owner’s moves has told me all I need to know. Our failures are largely based on coaching. I know Licht has missed but every GM does, overall I do like the young nucleus and a lot of this will depend on Winston this year but the owners clearly believe in Licht more than they have the previous coaching staffs.

    Koetter was/is a good DC but as an HC he clearly couldn’t figure things out. Mike Smith doomed him from the start. A good rule in any business is to never hire friends because they’re always tough to fire even when the writing is on the wall. Koetter’s downfall was not necessarily his coaching but his blind loyalty and acceptance of failure.

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    There is no question and should be no debate that Licht has failed miserably in the FA market……It could be argued that Nassib & Fitz were good acquisitions…..but neither of them fit the high-priced label.

    He has done quite well with UDFA…..>Barber, Auclair, Brate, Hump. Bobo and others….

    The draft is a mixed bag……we need to see how his recent picks do….Rojo, Stewart & Cappa in particular.

    I think his contract work has been pretty good…..

    Overall, I’d grade him a C-

  12. Tbbucs3 Says:


    You can say every GM misses but not every GM misses at this colossal amount. That’s like saying every QB throws interceptions. The good QBs throw much fewer just like the good GMs make much fewer mistakes.

  13. 813bucboi Says:


    so you want licht to forfeit the draft?….dont add any players via draft….

    my point is, most of the starters from last year will be starting again this year….the difference will be better coaching(development) and a better scheme…..there will be no massive turnover…..

    every team in the nfl adds pieces in the offseason….its called getting better….you have to have constant competition…iron sharpens iron…..

    the chiefs, pats, rams, saints will all be adding “a few pieces” in order to get better…..the dolphins will have a massive turnover…ARZ will have a massive turnover…..the bengals will have a massive turnover…..not the bucs….

    licht has collected some good talent but just as joe wrote yesterday, the previous staff didnt put players in position to be successful…..they had benenoch playing out of position….spence playing out of position….fans know VHG is better suited for man press not soft zone….kwon is better suited for OLB not MLB….the list goes on and on….development has been lacking…..

    add a few pieces to the main core and we’ll take off…..


  14. Pickgrin Says:

    Clinton McDonald was a good free agent signing. Brent Grimes was a good free agent signing. Ryan Fitzpatrick was a good free agent signing. Ryan Jensen was a good free agent signing.

    Evan Smith has been on the team for the last 5 years and contributed when needed….

    Conte was decent. Hawley was decent. Sterling Moore was decent. DJ Swearinger is a good player that coaches didn’t like and jettisoned…. DeSean Jackson is a diva and causing some division – but also a very talented player that if managed properly would be a huge asset….

    Ayers wasn’t terrible. Anger was excellent his first year here…

    Jac Smith and Howard Jones were both pretty good for a minute….

    Adam Humphries, Cam Brate. Alan Cross, Peyton Barber, Anthony Auclair, Carl Nassib – all good free agents signed by Jason Licht for dirt cheap…..

    Wester, Liedtke, Javien Elliott, Adarious Glanton/Taylor, Cam Lynch…

    There – was that so hard?

    Free Agency is a total crap shoot. Emphasis on the “crap” part.

    No team “hits” on more free agents than they “miss” on. None!

    Free Agents ARE Free Agents because another team didn’t want to keep them – or didn’t want to draft them.

    Its why you always hear that “building through the draft” is the key to sustained success in the NFL.

    Its why teams like the Steelers and Patriots and Packers (last year aside) maintain good and competitive rosters year in and year out – and why teams like the Redskins and Jets and Raiders usually don’t…

  15. Lord Cornelius Says:

    I’m Ok with C- grade for Licht.

    Kill this draft and get us 4 starters, including 2 probowlers, and a playoff birth, and he can move into B- territory.

    For some perspective on how bad it could be, the Broncos have 2 contributors from all of their 2013-2017 drafts projected to be on the team next year- 5 years of drafting. One is Garett Bolles who sucks. The other is Justin Simmons who is OK but not an elite talent.

    You want to talk about a complete F GM at the draft – look at those Broncos drafts or the Mark Dominik drafts.

    Meanwhile from Licth’s 2014-2017 – one less year than Elway had:

    QB: Winston (1 probowl – potential franchise QB if team doesn’t f*ck it up)
    WR: Evans ( probowler & arguably top 3-5 WR)
    WR: Chris Godwin (could be a #1 on some teams. At worst an above avg starter)
    TE: Howard (stud – #2 TE in the NFL per PFF last year)
    LT: Smith (avg starter) – he is playing for us next year sorry too many quotes
    LG: Marpet (above avg starter)

    DT: Vita Vea (above average DT with Haloti Ngata upside)
    CB: Calrton Davis (avg to below outside #2 CB as of now with upside)
    NCB: Vernon Hargreaves (above avg nickle when healthy – avg outside #2)
    S: Justin Evans (below average starting S – but better than about 1/3 of starting S per PFF)

    That’s 10 starters projected for 2019, not including Kwon Alexander / MJ Stewart / Ronald Jones / Ryan Smith – of which I’d think 2-3 will contribute significantly.

    So while we can focus on the misses, I can go around the league and point out a few teams that have been much worse.

    Licht = OK at the draft. Not good / great. But also not terrible/bad.

  16. Darin Says:

    Theres a reason the coaches were fired and not Licht. You can judge a gm on roster building with 2 of the worst coaching staffs of all time if ya want. The proof will hit the field this year. The same busts will suddenly be good pros. That defense, specifically, was a disgrace. He who hesitates is lost. Sums up the whole defense and the oline. Usually the guy who throws the first punch wins, especially in a 3-5 second fight.

  17. Tbbucs3 Says:


    All the players you named are average role players that only contribute to the Bucs being a below average football team. Are we lowering expectations that much to where we say Sterling Moore, Chris Conte, Robert Ayers And Clinton McDonald were good free agent signings?

    How do those guys stand up against other NFL competition? not very good. Remember Clinton McDonald and Robert Ayers couldn’t even make a team right after they left the Bucs.

  18. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Now that a think of it, every player you named as a good Jason Licht free agent signing is currently out of NFL and not with the Bucs anymore.

  19. Not there yet Says:

    Give the dude somewhat of a break. He negotiated a trade rather than bidding for the guy before he’s cut. In the off-season during free agency he landed JPP so it counts. Everyone dogging him about Vinny Curry gets to conveniently act like they weren’t begging for it to happen and also like they didn’t celebrate it by anointing him the immediate starter just like the team. Want to criticize that’s fine but don’t be a hypocrite and everyone is about Vinny Curry because EVERYONE thought it would be a good pickup. Fake arses

  20. JimmyJack Says:

    Joe you asked about our DBs and the problems with our passing defense. Don’t you think some of the blame can be shared by our LBs.

    When I watch the Bucs we seem to give up a ton of yardage between the seams and coming out of the backfield.

    The LBers are part of passing yards given up. They are a huge part of the reason for the high Completion % against us.

    The 3rd & 18 we gave up to that generic TE from the Steelers still bothers me to this day. Directly up the middle of course. I don’t know much about fantasy football but I’m pretty sure one of the safest bets out there is any TE vs our Bucs.

  21. mickman Says:

    hey tbbucs3′ light hit on humpheries. he was undrafted free agent. Just because he was not already on a team doesn’t mean he was not a free agent. i would say he was a great deal too.

  22. passthebuc Says:

    Again, it just points to the fact that Jason Licht is inept.

  23. passthebuc Says:

    Talk about all the players that have taken all of Team Glazers money, what about the coaches and most of all, Jason Licht.
    Licht must have Pictures of someone at HQ

  24. Crockett69 Says:

    DRome you have wisdom in your words. Out of a scale of 1 through 10, Jason has easily given us a 7. True, when he whiffed he did whiff but for the most part he has improved over Rockstar Dom. This year will plant his legacy….