About The Duke Johnson Pass

August 8th, 2019

A quality, 25-year-old running back was scooped up via a trade today and, apparently, Bruce Arians and Jason Licht thought the price tag was too high or the Bucs’ need wasn’t that strong.

This should come as no surprise.

Logic said the Bucs needed a running back in the draft, but the heavy hitters at One Buc Palace preferred to stock up on defensive backs.

The Browns made an in-conference trade and sent Duke Johnson to the Texans for a 2020 conditional fourth-round draft pick that could become third-round pick if Johnson lights up fantasy football leagues, which he did in 2017; Johnson had seven touchdowns and more than 1,000 combined yards rushing and receiving for a winless football team.

In early March, Joe learned on good authority that the Bucs had great interest in Johnson and new Bucs running backs coach Todd McNair had been told to pore over his game film and prepare an evaluation.

The Bucs’ interest in Johnson continued before the draft, Joe learned, but the asking price was too high.  That was the last intelligence Joe had received.

Joe will assume the Bucs really believe in Ronald Jones and Andre Ellington to pass on Johnson, who is signed for the next three seasons at an average of just under $4 million per year.

And yes, Joe assumes the Browns would have preferred to trade Johnson to the Bucs, a team out of their conference and a club whose 2020 draft picks are likely to be more valuable than the Texans’.

Joe’s not crying about passing on Johnson. Again, it’s no surprise. They’re going to pound Peyton Barber and hope he stays healthy while they gamble on RoJo.

Sounds like a plan.

28 Responses to “About The Duke Johnson Pass”

  1. BucEmUp Says:

    Nobody is going to give a crap once Jones explodes for an 80 yard td screen week 1 while leaving Kwon in his dust.

  2. Says:

    Barber is good. Rojo seems to have gotten good by all (Joe’s) accounts. Johnson is no better. Not going to lose any sleep over this one. VV’s knee on the other hand has me tossing and turning still…
    Go Bucs

  3. Elita Vita Says:

    That certainly is a vote of confidence for Barber/Rojo combination otherwise a conditional 4th rounder I think would have been worth it.

  4. Buccaneerscotty Says:

    He’s so happy they didn’t trade him to the Bucs!!!

  5. Waterboy Says:

    Can’t blame them I wouldn’t have given up a 4th rd pick for him either.

  6. Defense Rules Says:

    Could’ve lived with a 4th Rnd pick, but the $4 mil salary was too high for Johnson (he’d be sharing time with RoJo, Ellington & probably Anderson). If salary Cap allows, still think the Bucs will pick up a veteran RB before the San Fran game, but not before they sign at least 1 and maybe 2 OLinemen.

  7. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Trade Ronald Jones for Jeremy Mcnichols straight up…

    No playbooks needed either team”

    Kobe Faker

  8. Jeffbuc Says:

    One of joes man crush defensive lineman from our week one opponent is hurt. That was the knock on him out of college and one week into training camp he is hurt and week one is in question. Hopefully his ankle injury keeps him out of week one game along with McKinnon and aleaxander

  9. Alanbucsfan Says:

    If Johnson didn’t like Kitchens, he wasn’t going to like Arians either.

  10. Miller5252 Says:

    My guess is after the failed McCoy deal the Browns probably made the asking price for the Bucs a lot higher then what they let him go to the Texans for. The Bucs GM probably pissed the Browns off and they just wanted to get even. And maybe the figured during training camp if the Bucs didn’t like what they saw they would possibly pay the high price.

  11. Lamarcus Says:

    This guy Duke Johnson is a bust. He is not even a true running back and he is injury prone

  12. Louis Friend Says:

    It’s a 3rd round pick if Duke is active for 10 games. That’s pretty much a 3rd pick barring injury. For a guy who is a change of pace back like Jones is supposed to be – they might as well broadcast they made a mistake in wasting a 2nd round pick just one year ago. Licht is gambling on Jones, and he’d better be right.

  13. LordCorn Says:

    Lol “not crying”

    Keep it real you have extreme worry and doubt bout this run game. Don’t blame you but fingers crossed

    GO BUCS!

  14. Dapostman Says:

    So Duke Johnson had 1000 yards total behind these guys?

    Joe Thomas, Joel Bitonio, Kevin Zeitler, J.C. Tretter.

    You can’t keep trading your draft picks. You have to keep your picks and build through the draft. Unless you can get a true playmaker for a discount. A 4th round pick is not a discount for Duke Johnson. A 4th round pick is a discount for Randy Moss. See the difference?

  15. BrianDorry55 Says:

    Gross plan.

  16. Jean Lafitte Says:

    Johnson had seven touchdowns and a little more than 1,000 combined yards in 2017. <— What happened to 2018? I know, because 2018 he had only 630 total combined yards with 3 TD's …just didn't fit your narrative. What narrative? Johnson played very well last season. If he didn’t, he would have this kind of trade value. –Joe

    Peyton Barber did better than Duke last season than Duke in 2017. Barber had 1107 combined yards and 6 TD's last season "2018"
    Why is Duke any better? Especially when they probably would have fleeced us for a 3rd round pick and have him on the books for almost 4 mil. Who implied he was better than Barber, or a replacement for Barber? Not Joe. They’re two different backs. Would have been a nice complement. –Joe

    Joe reminds me of an angry bass. Just troll something shiny in his face and he bites it taking hook, line, and sinker.

  17. Stanglassman Says:

    Scotty- Houston’s OL is a mess I doubt he’s too thrilled about the Texans either. I like Duke Johnson and believe he’s underrated. Hopefully some of their OL rookies do well for him.

  18. Swampbuc Says:

    Barber is better than his 3.7 ypc average last year, and he had a corpse for a right guard that brought everyone else down. And a head coach who didn’t really believe in the run. If RoJo comes out to play, this was a solid decision. I’m betting BA knows what he’s doing, more than us typing about it.

  19. Rod Munch Says:

    Just get Charles Sims, they’re the same player.

  20. Cobraboy Says:

    So what?

  21. DunderMifflinRules Says:

    @Joe…”will assume” whatever he’d like. But it is just your assumption. Your “take”. Not reporting…of alot of anything.

    What’s interesting is in this article, is the angle/facet that didn’t make it in, which PFT likely might have objectively included in a Bucs’ article like this on past known player fascination with Dule…is…the angle of…what would the message have been about fat Gump Licht trading this late in the year for a RB with a 4th round pick, in relation to fat Gump Licht’s secpund round pick spent just last year on ROJO. Licht wouldn’t…let that message blow back on him, no matter how much we need a solution at RB. First, Licht digs the grave with using 2nd rounder on ROJO, then puts the casket in the ground by passing on Montgomery (1st), Henderson (2nd), Snell (3rd) all in the 3rd round (and fragile Miles Sanders in 2nd). But wait…then Licht would be covering up the casket in the ground, by trading for a RB, especially this close to the season. YES…it would have screamed that. His plump self, simply wasn’t going to let that…happen.

    But interesting that conclusive and spot-on angle…wasn’t included here. A disservice.

  22. Cannon Says:

    “Sounds like a plan.”

    Much satire tonight, eh Joe? 🙂

  23. Jameis Almighty! Says:

    Licht is better at the 4th round. Big draft asset..

  24. cmurda Says:

    This was a mistake by Licht to pass on Duke. That is a small price to play for an explosive back that makes yards out of his catches and can handle 8-10 rushes a game. Duke made the most of his touches. I was all on the Duke bus as soon as Cle signed Kareem Hunt.

  25. D1 Says:


    The idea that a 4th round draft pick is more valuable than a current player .
    True if its part of a “Build thru the draft, (resign the guys who develop and redraft the position if they dont )” philosophy .

    Problem with that philosophy is it’s antiquated and designed for an Era that doesn’t exist. But does it still work? If you look at the bucs, the answer is clearly no.

    The Joe’s cover an nfl team daily, and they still peddle this philosophy. Whaaatttt???? There are many ways to build a winning organization. Joe is very much pro free agency. Joe is very much pro draft. It’s always been about picking the right guys and the right head coach. –Joe
    In spite of the evidence to the contrary , ie reality. Too many fans are self appointed experts and stand proudly on the old azz..soap box claiming that there’s a single way to build a successful team.

    . Ok, opinion is that. But it’s an opinion that perpetuates failure. The opioid of opinions. (SH-T !!!) Tampa Bay is alone at the bottom of toilet. It’s no longer g the browns and Bucs. Great job tampa bay……

    While it’s popular and trendy to blame the QB or the coaching or kicking, fans seemed to have really bought in , but is firing on guy and replacing him with a better version going to be the quick turn around we all want to see. It’s possible.

    I’m suggesting the organization should be deliberate in their decisions. Stop accepting Possible prior to the season . Or accept winning is possible but not probable.

    Buc fans have gone to great lengths to mitigate seasons upon seasons of disasters. Most adhere to the “this team is easy to fix, just do this, fire him, draft…and we’re going the superbowl.” Why?

    Why are fans making excuses for owners and management instead of listening to owners making them. Buc fans have become full service contributors to a losing culture. Because we’ve been satisfied with possible
    and somehow developed a deep disdain for many if not all of the traits of a successful organization.

  26. Buczilla Says:

    My goodness, our decision makers with the Buccaneers hate running backs almost as much as pass rushers. If Rojo and Spence pan out this year I’ll gladly eat my words and even sing Licht a song for his birthday, but this non move just makes me laugh in frustration.

  27. Allbuccedup Says:

    Yeah we have to save that 4th round pick you never know when a franchise kicker comes along. HAHAHAHA

  28. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    We may not even need a running back. I’m willing to wait and see.

    On top of that, I don’t believe a vertical passing game runs much anyway, which is probably why Arians doesn’t like to pay them.