O.J. Howard “Isn’t Happy”

April 22nd, 2020

It seems not everyone is doing shots at speakeasies throughout the Bay area over Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht getting over on Bill Belicheat.

(Yes, in some cities due to lockdowns for The Sickness, illegal speakeasies are cropping up like in the 1920s Prohibition era.)

Now Joe has brought information to his readers from the guy who runs The Draft Network, J.C. Cornell, because Joe knows of his direct pipeline to shot-callers at One Buc Palace.

And Cornell’s scoops have often been far more correct than not.

So a few hours after news broke that the Bucs traded for future Hall of Fame tight end Rob Gronkowski, Cornell twittered that the Bucs likely will try to trade Howard by this weekend, in part, because Howard is unhappy with recent developments.

Well, it’s going to be an awfully crowded tight end room at One Buc Palace if someone isn’t traded. Joe is going to guess that the Bucs will want to keep a tight end who can produce as Gronk is injury-prone. That would be Cam Brate.

Antony Auclair returns this season. He’s a fine blocker.

That leaves Howard, a former first-round draft pick with mad skills, as the odd man out. Since he is still under his rookie deal, he will be easier to move as he is cheap(er).

Joe isn’t so sure that the Bucs acquiring Gronk is what has gotten under Howard’s skin (allegedly). It is fresh in Joe’s noggin’ how Howard, during an episode of the “Tampa 55 podcast,” asked when he plans to link up with Brady and maybe start working out with him, Howard replied, “Within the next couple of months or so.”

Huh? Your team just got the best NFL quarterback this century and you have no sense of urgency or burning desire to hop on a plane and get back to Tampa to start building chemistry with him?

That seemed odd to Joe at the time, and it remains weird. Prior to that in late March, Howard told SportsCenter that he hadn’t communicated with any teammates about Brady signing with the Bucs.

Joe senses Howard has wanted out of Tampa Bay longer than just yesterday afternoon.

57 Responses to “O.J. Howard “Isn’t Happy””

  1. Mike Johnson Says:

    I hope OJ gets outta Tampa. He deserves better. Gronk has not played a complete season since 2011. We gave him 10 mil for maybe 8 or 9 games. Desperation is one thing. But outright stupidest is altogether different.

  2. Jerry Says:

    Hey Joe, what’s your thought on an OJ Howard for Josh Rosen straight up? Dolphins will be drafting a QB and even though Byron had a putrid year with Rosen, it seems like all things with that team were doomed from the start.

    I just don’t see Tampa getting anything higher than a Round 3 pick. Either way exciting times.

  3. SOEbuc Says:

    Fine by me. Kronk can teach up Tanner Hudson to be an All-Star. Really like Hudson. Got high ceiling.

  4. Joe Says:

    Hey Joe, what’s your thought on an OJ Howard for Josh Rosen straight up?

    Would hope Bucs use Howard as bait to trade up.

    Not even sure Rosen is a quality backup at this point.

  5. Buc believer Says:

    Oh well! Super Bowl baby!

  6. FuNkYxMuNkEy Says:

    Gronk came here to win a ring not for money. He will restructure and sign for cheap. We can keep all 3 and be set at the position or most likely trade OJ for a late 2nd to early 3rd on Friday. He is a 1st round pick with lots of talent and 2 years of control minimum. There’s plenty of value there still and being owed only $2mil this season will just increase that value. I personally hope we keep him unless we get a pick that’s just too much to pass on. We can get a stud OT, RB, WR, and Safety if we can get 4 picks in the 1st 3 rounds. Then after cuts are made hopefully we can get some vets for cheap at DT.

  7. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    Is there any reason as to why Howard wants out?

    He had a down year but he was told to get down in the trenches and block. When he was asked to catch footballs last year most of the time it wasn’t pretty. Sure under utilizing tight ends is one thing but still a lot of OJ’s lackluster performance is on him.

  8. CalBucsFan Says:

    Love Brate and would hate to see him go, but O.J.’s got the better ceiling, smaller cap hit, and would learn a lot from Gronkowski to benefit the Bucs for the long-term, just like a rookie drafted QB would from TB. Therefore, Arians and Licht should make peace with O.J. if that’s what it will take and let him know he WILL be a major part of the offense this year.

  9. ©MadMax Says:

    Separation from the men and the boys will continue….Gronk and Brady is in the house now!! OJ will be traded….sorry bro, jit happens.

  10. adam from ny Says:

    gronk is food…


  11. REDZONE BA Fa Says:

    Sadly, another Licht shouda couda …..Dalvin Cook….Pro Bowl RB. Bring it, Bucs fans! Yes, I pined for Cook as either 1st or 2nd round pick over OJ!!!

    Licht fell for the amazing OJ physique….. looks like a Greek marble statue and runs like a deer. Played on Alabama team that ran over everyone….hmm.

    Big miss in every way for Bucs. OJ has potential to succeed. Was not worthy of Bucs 1st round choice.

  12. lambchop Says:

    Isn’t it weird that OJ is most likely unhappy with the lack of targets in the offense last year for TEs and now this year the offense will obviously heavily favor the RB and TE in new ways we didn’t see? For OJ not to be a part of that, I mean that’s sad. Gronk is literally here for 1 year barring concussions and injury. I hope no real attractive trade develops for OJ.

    I would think Brate would be the target because, really, is a team that is lacking solid TE play worried about paying Brate 6.6M? Why don’t they draft a TE then. LOL, oh yea, there aren’t any legit TEs worth drafting this year.

  13. J Dubb Says:

    I would like to keep OJ. Brady is known to utilize two TE sets effectively and having Gronk and Howard on the field at the same time along with Evans and Godwin would create mismatches everywhere and still be able to throw deep as all those guys can get downfield. If Gronk gets hurt, Howard and Brate see the field together. Plus Gronk only has a year left and Howard’s contract is very team friendly. If Gronk leaves next year, Howard gets his raise and becomes TE1. Howard is the closest TE we have to Gronk so he could really learn a lot from him.

  14. Rod Munch Says:

    OJ should be moved to WR, that should make him very happy. If he’s any good he’ll make a lot more money there than he will at TE.

    Also reading more on Gronk, I always knew he was a good blocker, but the national guys seem to think he was a lot better blocker than that. The Bucs need to roid him up so he puts his weight back on and use him there. Just have to make Arians actually use his TE’s as receivers – but I fully expect Arians isn’t getting Brady and Gronk not to play to their strengths.

  15. Jim Says:

    It’s a good sign when a GM is willing to let go of a bust sooner rather than later. Too many coaches and GM’s hide the fact that they made a bad pick by holding on to them too long. Licht has enough built in personnel wins to let one go every now and then.

  16. ©MadMax Says:

    Brady: “This weather is much nicer down here”

    Gronk: “Yeah Bro, a lot nicer, and the chics wearing so little”

    Brady: “Yeah man, remember those touchdowns I threw to you in the playoffs?”

    Gronk: “Of course I do bro”

    Brady: “Get your mind off of hot chics for now….we’re here to win a Superbowl again and have a limited time frame to do it in”

    Gronk: “Yeah I know, but did you see hoohaas on that blonde just now, dammit boy”

    Brady: “SMDH, boy you are something, I’ll give you that”

    Gronk: “Thats right…ok lets do this….time to win another ring”

    …..and the rest is history 🙂

  17. Cannon Says:

    Joe, do you think O.J. has the chops to be a wide receiver?

  18. Joe Says:

    Joe, do you think O.J. has the chops to be a wide receiver?

    Slot/possession receiver? Possibly.

  19. Rod Munch Says:

    Cannon – OJ, coming out of college, at 6′ 6″ and 251lbs, ran a 4.51 – and we know from his first two years he can catch the ball. Last year he was awful, but he just never seemed to get anything going, in part because I think he was used so much as a blocker. Just move him to outside WR, he doesn’t have to worry about blocking anymore, he just has to run and catch the ball and I think he’d do really well. I’m not 100% sure on that, but I’m like 90% sure. With Godwin inside, Gronk there, Evans and OJ outside – WOW is that a nightmare for the rest of the NFL.

    I don’t know if this is in the works, probably not, but I’d rather try to get something out of Howard. He was a 1st rounder and one of the best TE prospects ever for a reason, and it wasn’t his blocking.

  20. adam from ny Says:

    maybe they won’t be drafting a receiver and just use what they have…you never know…

    if howard stays, we have by far the most skilled set of tight ends…

    and maybe that’s what brady wanted…

    what if:

    what if he said to BA, “i’ll run your offense bruce, just give me one receiving running back and ample tight end stable and an extensive group of tight end plays…and the rest is all your offense bruce”

    what if he said that, and BA said ok

  21. Jean Lafitte Says:

    So Howard is turning into a Seferian-Jack@ss?

  22. adam from ny Says:

    do you think BA and Tom Gravy sit on the phone talking about this sheet, while sipping on elderberry juice ?

  23. Adrnagy Says:

    All we need is to hire will williecheat and run training camp at the park.

  24. teacherman777 Says:

    Trade OJ to Kansas City.

    I guarantee you Andy Reid would like the fast TE in the league.

    Can you imagine Kelce and OJ in KC?

    The speed, the matchups.

    Trade OJ for Tyranne Mathieu.

    Go Bucs!

  25. Swampbuc Says:

    OJ hadn’t come out and said he’s unhappy. But the TE room is crowded — although why trade the most talented guy in that room when Brate probably only has 2 or 3 good years and it’s Brate’s salary that is cumbersome against the cap. Gronk should have agreed to a pay cut, or the Bucs should have told him that’s part of the deal. Losing a talent like Howard is stupid especially for peanuts. But it’s the Bucs.

  26. Adrnagy Says:

    Just like I call gronk to Bucs. I’m calling S Adams to Bucs on draft day.

  27. THETRUTH Says:

    “Not happy” was not a quote from Howard as the headlines seem to imply. That was someone else saying what he thinks Howard feels , let’s be fair he to Howard.

    His response to meeting up with Brady concerns me with his passion for the game.

    Will get less for him now , value dropped knowing we don’t need him

  28. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    That’s just the thing, OJ Howard doesn’t have mad skills. He just has athletic talent, and weirdly he’s still an awkward athlete. For the people who say OJ “deserves better”, he was offered a silver platter to be dominant for well over 2 years, & he did almost nothing but cost us games.

  29. Elita Vita Says:

    It is my opinion as I have stated on JBF on more than one occasion that to me OJ seems like he does not want to play with Tampa Bay. I’ve stated this months and months ago long before Tom Brady and Gronkowski became Buccaneers. Maybe because of all the losing this team endures. Who knows, maybe after all the college winning at Alabama, in his mind perhaps he is tired of the roller coaster rides. Did he make his feelings known to other players and or coaches? Have things been sour at OBP for a while now? Does he feel that he didn’t want to “waste his talents” with the Buccaneers? If this is the case, how ironic is it that the team has morphed into what it is today. But IMO the caste has been dyed for quite a while….but now it’s too late. He will be a stud elsewhere in the NFL… but the relationship with the Buccaneers and OJ Howard IMO has been over for quite sometime.

  30. WalkdaPlank Says:

    If OJ had played like a first round draft pick last season he would have no reason to be upset. However, sophomore slumps do happen. He can still be the future at TE. Gronk will only be here as long as Brady is. But if he wants to go, he is the odd man out.

    Never understood why we even drafted him. TE wasn’t a need at the time, and while it did seem that OJ was better than Brate at the time, it was like going from a B+ to an A-. Licht will probably continue his terrible drafting here in a couple days….

  31. westernbuc Says:

    If I were O.J., I’d be calling Bruce every day trying to cement myself in his offense. Even if it’s as TE 2.

    I still think we can use him as a weapon. He’s a homerun vs Gronk being a bit more of a safety blanket.

  32. HomerSimpsonRocks Says:

    Maybe OJ is more of a “playa” than a player. He seems a bit is a poser. Like “look at me. I’ve arrived”. Contrast him with Godwin who is humbly going about his business of working as hard as possible at homing his Craft, always striving to get better and staying positive. OJ seems like an entitled looks like Tarzan plays like Jane kind of player. A me guy. Not a team guy. But I have no actual idea. Stroud said there are rumors he has trouble understanding BAs playbook.

  33. MRRR Says:

    Everyone remember OJ Howard’s best catch? Yep. It was a foul ball at the Ray’s playoff game. Unfortunately, I don’t remember very many catches for the Bucs.

  34. Bucsfanman Says:

    Why should we feel any empathy for Howard? It was his poor play last year that made him expendable, nothing else.
    The thing with Brady? Yea, that is concerning. If you’re trying to be about something, you go the extra mile and do whatever it takes. It shows immaturity as a player and it’s not a good look if you’re hoping another team has an interest.
    Gronk would not be here if OJ was “ballin'”. That is a FACT!

  35. BigHog Says:

    OJ was not the main target very often, Mr. 5,000 got him the ball as much as he could…this is just a piece of the BradyPackage (demand)…so we gonna give up on a young talent for a guy who will not produce anywhere near what he used to…he’ll be a shell of himself!! TAMPA BAY PATS!!

  36. BucEmUp Says:

    Howards attitude sucks!

  37. rrsrq Says:

    Has anybody heard from O.J. that he is upset. This could be a journalist throwing something against the wall. But he has been the subject of trade talks since the trading deadline last year. Tight end was not the weak link on this team. For a fourth round pick (now we know why they weren’t interested in Leonard Fournette) because he could’ve probably been had for a fourth and not cost you 10 million dollars and eat up the rest of the cap.

  38. gracelivin Says:

    We need to make a deal with Washington to get Trent Williams, whether it is Howard or Brate and a couple of picks, maybe a 3 this year and a 2 next. That would free us up to do a lot with our #1 pick and it would shore up our line.

  39. Admiral Redbeard Says:

    Miami has a plethora of draft picks. How about trading Howard for a few mid round picks, like a 3rd, 4th, and 5th. We could easily solidify multiple positions, while still getting that 1st rd OT.

  40. Jerry Says:

    If the man wants out Grant him his wish. I didn’t see a lot of effort on his part last year and the interception off his back that he should have caught was a very poor effort . I don’t care if the man goes to the pro bowl with another team. The truth is he does not give a damn and his effort on the field reflects that. Tampa can no longer wait on players to show up. If he is unhappy trade his ass!

  41. Youngbucs Says:

    Big hog lol still 🧂🧂🧂🧂🧂

  42. lowercaseg Says:

    trade him to the jets for jamal adams, or arizona for a draft pick

  43. Pugs&Bucs Says:

    Funny how Minnesota isn’t talking about trading Dalvin Cook.

  44. ItzOK Says:

    It doesn’t make sense to trade away young cheap talent in my opinion. Unless you can leverage OJ to grab an impact need player in your draft or through trade thats the only way it makes sense. This is mortgaging the future and if it produces a title itz worth but if it falls short we are setting ourselves up for long term pain.

  45. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    Mike Johnson Says:
    “I hope OJ gets outta Tampa.”


    I agree.

  46. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Has Licht ever traded a player during the draft?

  47. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    People need to think beyond this year too.

  48. Go Bucs 72 Says:

    Maybe OJ should get his head in the game and start catching the football instead of handing it to the guy covering him. AMF.

  49. TOM Says:

    Never was an OJ fan from the time he was drafted. Said back then it was a big mistake. Now we know why he fell to the Bucs & loser Licht pounced on him. Keep Licht out of the draft process.

  50. TexBuc Says:

    Easy look like Tarzan and play like Tarzan = playing time and respect.

  51. Allbuccedup Says:

    Trade OJ today or tomorrow for whatever you can get. He’s no good to us sitting on the bench.

  52. Anonymous Says:

    OJ needs a fresh start somewhere else and maybe he’ll get his head out of his a$s and start to play up to his potential.

  53. Bradinator Says:

    Maybe Brady and Gronk will turn OJ around. Brady won’t put up with lazing around the field, and Gronk could sure teach him a lot. Not sure running him out of town for a likely 4th rounder is in our best interests. You’ll find out quick enough if he can’t hack it. Sure hate to pay that 5th round option if we don’t have to, though.

  54. Rod Munch Says:

    “Buccaneer Bonzai Says:
    April 22nd, 2020 at 9:56 am
    People need to think beyond this year too.”

    No, they really don’t – you don’t dump a 26-year old who just lead the league in passing to worry about the future – the Bucs are in win now mode. They need to win this year, and next year, and whatever happens after that, well we deal with it then.

    With that said they should strongly consider moving Howard to WR if they can’t get good value in a trade. I’m thinking he might only get like a 5th rounder, if that is correct, then there’s no way get rid of him. If they can get something like Trent Williams, then wow, yeah, make it happen (no idea how the cap would work, but who cares, create space — that’s what good teams do).

    But the team is in win now mode, and for me, give up draft picks down the road, blow up the cap down the road, who cares – win now!

    Well assuming the season happens – it would be the most Bucs thing ever for the season to get cancelled when not only the Bucs have an old must win right now roster but the SB is in Tampa… The most Bucs thing ever.

  55. Paul Schmit Says:

    “Never understood why we even drafted him. TE wasn’t a need at the time, and while it did seem that OJ was better than Brate at the time, it was like going from a B+ to an A-. Licht will probably continue his terrible drafting here in a couple days….”

    Drafting OJ not terrible, especially in a Koetter led offense. Probably should have gone a different route. People were talking Howard up like sure fire top 10 pick. I think Licht got on the clock, he was still there and got flustered. Many questionable draft picks over the years. Good thing BA is here to save us. White (1), SMB(2), Dean (3) last year was an amazing haul! Bucs secondary gonna be good, watch out! Fully expect Nelson (4) to produce Nassib #’s next year. If BA at the helm again this year we gonna like the next few days…

  56. Snook Says:

    OJ is like Gerald McCoy. Tons of talent but no fire.

  57. The Saint Says:

    SAINTS will take OJ.
    And use him to spank Tom cryBrady twice a season