Veteran Depth

January 27th, 2020

Veteran safety with ties to Bucs coaches may be available.

Aside from running back, no area on the Bucs needs fresh blood more than safety.

After hard-hitting Jordan Whitehead and rookie Mike Edwards (who was just OK last year), the Bucs are thin as paper at safety.

Now it would not shock Joe one bit if the Bucs drafted Grant Delpit from LSU in the first round come April. Is that a reach at No. 14? Probably.

(No, Joe has no updates on Justin Evans. If there were, you would read them here. Joe finds it a pipe dream to believe Evans will start 10 games for the Bucs again in one season. The guy just cannot stay healthy and when you keep getting your wheels injured, including an Achilles, that’s not good.)

Well, a former Todd Bowles/Bucco Bruce Arians safety may be on the market this spring. That is Baltimore’s Tony Jefferson.

The Oklahoma product played for Arians in Arizona and was solid. He jumped to Baltimore as a free agent and in 2017 and 2018, Jefferson was an anchor in the Crows’ secondary.

But this year for the first time, Jefferson did not play in training camp and followed that up by blowing out his knee in the fifth week of the season. As a result, Jefferson has been open on social media he thinks the Ravens will cut him loose this spring.

Joe does not know if Jefferson’s wheels are starting to break down. That’s what usually happens with skill position players. Jefferson’s 28th birthday is today.

Now Joe isn’t suggesting the Bucs should break the bank to bring in Jefferson. They should not. But if Jefferson has any gas left in the tank, he would be a nice piece to add to the roster if for no other reason than depth, which the Bucs do not have at safety.

10 Responses to “Veteran Depth”

  1. Pewter power Says:

    Lol so sign depth? Cant pitch a guy who blew out his knew after talking about replacing injured Evans. The “potential free agent ” you are talking about sounds like Darren Stewart who we had last year and did nothing special. We dont need to waste time on what you describe taking reps away from mike Edwards. Have you not learned from counting guys out after a rookie season?

    Besides go for a major upgrade in free agency or draft the best guy, I think the fans have about had enough of mediocre mentality in draft picks and free agents.

  2. Brad Says:

    Eric Berry said he’s ready to play this coming year

  3. Defense Rules Says:

    Bucs are definitely thin at Safety. Whitehead spent the last 2 games on IR & Edwards spent several games dinged up earlier in the season. And of course Justin Evans spent the season on IR & is questionable for the future. Darian Stewart stayed healthy but was only really used in 4 games (Game 1 then Games 14, 15 & 16 to close out the season when Whitehead was hurt). Right now he’s a UFA & I doubt that the Bucs will re-sign him. Bucs also have D’cota Dixon but he hasn’t gotten any playing time yet (Bucs must like him though because he’s under contract until 2022).

    The one Safety who no one ever mentions who did get tons of defensive snaps was Andrew Adams (now a UFA). Didn’t really get into the first 3 games, but after that he was a starter/key rotational player for the next 13 games (616 defensive snaps … almost 55%). He may not be ‘flashy’ like some, but he got as much playing time as Mike Edwards. I hope that the Bucs have the good sense to re-sign him as a backup.

    Assuming that we re-sign Adams & that Evans doesn’t make it back, that’d leave us with Whitehead, Edwards, Adams & Dixon at Safety. Surely the Bucs will carry 1 more Safety on the roster. My guess is that TB will want a veteran starting-caliber Free Safety to pair with Whitehead; someone who can add some experienced leadership to our very young Secondary. Tony Jefferson fits that description, but at his $8.5 mil salary and coming off injury, I doubt the Bucs will sign him IF Baltimore even releases him. Lots of other UFA safeties out there who I bet TB has his eye on.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I don’t count Justin Evans out until he is out…..but I don’t count him in until he is in.

  5. Danny Says:

    Darian Stewart was really bad at points I’d like to go in a different direction from him.

  6. 813bucboi Says:

    jefferson would be a good fit…..

    he’s the type of vet we need in the secondary…..

    whitehead is a beast in the run game….a slight liability in coverage….TEs gave him fits this year….

    GO BUCS!!!!!!

  7. PSL Bob Says:

    I don’t think Delpit is that big a reach in the first round. We need a young safety, and the guy is a beast. The others discussed above provide depth, but are not long-term prospects, which we need if we’re building for a sustainable playoff contender. The only other option would be a consensus future pro-bowl stud O lineman should one be available. RB in 2nd or 3rd round, assuming the front office is sticking with Jameis.

  8. Craig Says:

    It will take almost all of the cap money to keep the offense and defensive line together for next year. There really won’t be enough to bring in also ran free agents.

    The draft has a couple of really good safeties available. Delpit is my favorite, but he might be gone by pick #14.

    If he is the Bucs could trade down and still grab Xavier McKinney. Then, with two second rounders, they can grab a QB and RT in the second.

    A RB in three.

  9. pick6 Says:

    bucs can’t afford to spend big at the safety position despite the lack of clear starters…they need to throw a bunch of low-cost stuff against the wall in the draft and free agency (dudes like this) and hope for a guy to outperform expectations. personally, i think\hope it’s one of the current draftees.

  10. Jackpc1 Says:

    There was recent talk about former LSU and current Jets safety Jamal Adams, who flourished under Todd Bowles and not so much under current regime as a second day draft trade possibility. I would gladly give up a second round pick for Adams.