Gil Brandt: Chris Godwin Should Stay Put

March 9th, 2021


When one of the greatest personnel guys who ever lived speaks, Joe is listening.

The same guy who consistently says the second-most important player on a football team is a pass rusher also had advice for one of the top free agents in this year’s class. That guy also happens to play for the Bucs.

Gil Brandt, Pro Football Hall of Famer and architect of the Cowboys dynasties for nearly four decades, took to his regular column on and believes Bucs free agent receiver Chris Godwin will do himself a whole lotta good by sticking with the Bucs and catching passes from park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring, down-forgetting, handshake-stiffing, jet-ski-losing, biscuit-baking, tequila-shooting, waffle-grilling, trophy-throwing Bucs Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady.

Godwin’s recent comments suggesting he wouldn’t risk putting himself in a “miserable” situation for the sake of money show wisdom beyond his 25 years. He appears to be aware that there are far worse fates than catching passes from Tom Brady on a team considered an early front-runner to capture a second straight Super Bowl title. Godwin found his niche working out of the slot in Tampa’s offense, collecting a team-high 45 targets, 38 catches, 463 yards and two scores out of the slot in 2020. He missed four games with injuries, which likely explains why he fell short of 1,000 yards, but he edged leading Bucs receiver Mike Evans (1,006 yards) in targets per game (7 to 6.8) and receptions per game (5.4 to 4.4). Godwin is a much better receiver, technique-wise, than Evans.

I don’t believe Godwin will receive the franchise or transition tag, even if the Bucs find a way to retain last year’s tag recipient, pass rusher Shaquil Barrett. Thus, his return will rest on two factors: 1) Will someone else offer him WR1 money? And 2) Will Godwin believe that this hypothetical squad has as good a chance of competing for the Lombardi Trophy as the Bucs do?

Good research by Brandt about Godwin’s targets. This tells Joe a couple of things:

1. Defenses feared Mike Evans more. It stands to reason if Godwin was targeted more than Evans, then Godwin was more open more often than Evans. Meaning, teams were more concerned to defend Evans than Godwin. (Joe will add that another receiver averaged more targets per games played than Godwin: furniture-tossing, bicycle-throwing receiver Antonio Brown.

2. The popular saying is Tom Brady gets what Tom Brady wants. We’d be foolish and naive to think Brady wasn’t pushing for the Bucs to trade for foot-rubbing, car-littering tight end Rob Gronkowski and Brown.

So if Godwin was being targeted more than Evans, that means Brady likes and trusts Godwin to come down with the passes. Before Godwin hurt his finger and needed pins, this was especially true.

If Brady really does get what Brady wants, it’s difficult to see Godwin slipping away from the Bucs. We sure know Bucs Super Bowl-winning coach Bucco Bruce Arians wants Godwin to stay.

31 Responses to “Gil Brandt: Chris Godwin Should Stay Put”

  1. adam from ny Says:

    i’ll take a morning cup of godwin and a buttered bagel to go

  2. Bucsfanman Says:

    In a perfect world, everybody stays. I don’t envy Buc decision-makers.

  3. Bird Says:

    And godwin is a beast of a blocker too
    Really fits perfectly in the slot as closer to line of scrimmage on running plays
    Brady will likely be in coaches ear about godwin returning

    Someone will offer godwin 20 mil a year though. The other two teams here in florida alone which makes it a challenge for us and maybe why they tag godwin. Think about it. Godwin is 25 And already proven which you cannot count on in the draft.

    Miami needs to help tua develop
    Jacksonville needs to help lawrence develop
    Ndog needs eggplant to feel fulfilled

    Tag him if going for 2

  4. Defense Rules Says:

    There’s only 1 personnel guy whose opinion really matters at this point: Jason Licht. All the other pundits can give OPINIONS; Jason has to deal with FACTS.

    And the FACTS are that money talks. Bucs have a defined (and limited) amount; Chris Godwin wants some. It doesn’t sound at all like he’s ‘greedy’, but he’ll be expecting (and rightfully so) a decent payday. And when your Market Value is slightly north of $17 mil it becomes harder for your current team to hold onto you. Especially when your current team has LOTS of other mouths to feed, players like Lavonte David, Shaquil Barrett and Ndamukong Suh who are also FAs & who are all invaluable to this team.

    But another FACT that JL has to contend with is that the Bucs can’t afford to pay for the 2020 team that won the Super Bowl. Not even close. So HE has to decide what key pieces we WILL pay for, and what pieces will be replaced (for less money obviously). Unless folks like Gil Brandt use the same BIG PICTURE prism that Jason has to use (aka, the TEAM perspective), their OPINIONS are really of limited value.


    Bye Godwin 👋 thanks for everything it’s been real bro!

  6. Bird Says:

    Hey joes.

    Enlighten us on the cap issue?

    I read in some articles that it is yet to be determined and with extra 17th game and tv deals it could be very close to staying the same at 198 mil (last years cap number)

    And in others , its been already set at between 180 -185 mil parameters which could be a huge problem for all teams not named jets , jags and only a few others

    Look at cowboys …they signed Dak for 40 mil a year…160 total …165 if meets markers

    Brady at 25 mil or dak at 40 mil 😂 Not even close. Thats 1 or 2 super-stars the cowboys cant sign cause of daks huge deal. And he is good for sure. Not 40 mil good. Thats mahommes money…not sure rodgers even worth 40. Maybe 35

  7. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We made the decision not to rework Godwin’s contract last year….opting to spend the money elsewhere….it worked out….now we have to pay the piper…..we simply can’t afford both Chris Godwin & Shaq Barrett and still field the rest of the team needed to compete…..choose one.
    My choice is to keep the defense together.

  8. David Says:

    I think it is shaping up like Gowin and Shaq sign and LVD takes the money and runs, unfortunately.
    Godwin is so good and so young it would be stupid to let him walk.
    Shaq’s skill set is so hard to replace, it would be stupid to let him walk.
    I absolutely hate to see LVD walk, I think he should retire a buccaneer but, given his age, and a handful of very fast linebackers that should be available in the first and second round, that’s probably going to be the way they have to go.

  9. Jason Says:

    So TB12 wants to throw to ME13, CG14, AB, and OBJ?
    How selfish!

  10. Beeej Says:

    I expect Godwin gets more targets because Evans nearly always draws double coverage, making Godwin’s job that much easier. Anyhow, I believe they have found a way to keep Godwin AND Shaq–when you combine Brady’s restructuring with the fact the cap WILL gov up on coming years, we can backload their contracts

  11. Bruce Blahak Says:

    This is task #1…sign or franchise Godwin! David too, but easier to replace with a young prospect possibly with #1 pick. Barrett sounds like the guy to walk, because of money. Jameis Joe thinks he’s irreplaceable. Hogwash….

  12. Alanbucsfan Says:

    1) Will someone else offer him WR1 money? And 2) Will Godwin believe that this hypothetical squad has as good a chance of competing for the Lombardi Trophy as the Bucs do?

    – re 1 – Godwin has to consider his family first.
    – re 2- see 1, financial security for his family will be the primary factor, Godwin now has a ring, and, like it or not as a Bucs fan, his family will be no 1 consideration.

  13. Buc4evr Says:

    I like Godwin, hope he stays but we are loaded at WR, and can bring in Odell if Brady wants him. Succop is actually more important to the team…. that’s the guy we better make sure we keep. I know it’s crazy, but I’d rather tag him than Godwin.

  14. daniel Da Man Says:

    Its about money, from the owners to the players. Us fans have a short memorable.. sure
    we dislike it when a player leaves for money, however fame is alwys
    Fleeting . Take the money and enjoy. He game is
    Not what you bring to the table when you hring

  15. Steven007 Says:

    Alan, if financial security can’t be had making 15 to 16 million a year for four or five years, then he’s using the wrong accountant.

  16. zzbuc Says:

    Keep CG…let LVD or Suh go…….

  17. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Tag Shaq, if he walks the Bucs get 2 first-round draft picks. No team is going to give you 2 first-round draft picks for Godwin. So Tag your it Shaq. GO BUCS!!!

  18. daniel Da Man Says:

    The table.

  19. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Steven007 – if Godwin was offered that much by Bucs and he accepted , that would mean Bucs were using up 25 pct of their cap on WR and TE – that is a recipe for poor team balance – see Dallas Cowboys

  20. 1sparkybuc Says:

    David and Godwin are born and raised Buccaneers. Shaq is a hired gun who has publicly stated he wants to break the bank. Some team will pay him more than he is worth. Some team won’t have VV, Suh, and JPP. Licht will find a player in free agency or in the draft to replace Shaq. The coaches will do the rest. Shaq will be a wealthy man, but he won’t win another Lombardi trophy.

  21. Defense Rules Says:

    @zzbuc … “Keep CG…let LVD or Suh go”. Let’s see, CG Market Value: $17.1 mil. LVD & SUH together: Market Value just about $17 mil.

    Are you REALLY SURE zzbuc that you want to trade TWO of the most important defensive starters for ONE receiver? Look BEHIND those TWO defensive starters & see who we’ve got waiting in the wings to replace them? Now do the same for the ONE receiver.

    And remember, when you let LVD & Suh go, you NEED to replace them with comparable players or your defense will suffer. Last I looked, comparable players aren’t free.

  22. Mike Johnson Says:

    Goodwin should do..what the hell he wants to do..period. He has a Superbowl win under his belt now. That’s more than the vast majority in the league. Go get paid man. This career is short for many. make your paper. the hell with allegiance. Your allegiance should be to the almighty dollar. You’re gonna take away many injuries from football. If you smart, you will stash away some of that cash. Show me the money.

  23. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Mike Johnson: What does Harold Goodwin have to do with this thread?


    If Brady restrucered he wants something and my guess is Godwin. Brady loves slot receivers. Welker, Edleman, Amendola, Brown and backs that can catch, Faulk, Vereen, Woodhead, White, Burkhead. Sign White!!!! Bye Lenny.

  25. Steven007 Says:

    Alan, I’m just stating that’s the going rate. Shave $3 million off those figures in the same thing applies.

  26. Beeej Says:

    If you’re Godwin, would you take 14 million to play with the Bucs versus 17 million to play with the Jets? I believe it will come down to scenarios like that

  27. Buc1987 Says:

    Godwin’s gone.

    We are never ever, ever getting back together
    We are never ever, ever getting back together
    You go talk to your friends, talk to my friends, talk to me
    But we are never ever, ever, ever getting back together
    Like, ever

  28. Beeej Says:

    CLEARLY a ‘glass is half empty’ kind of guy

  29. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    This pretty much says it all, Miami needs to help Tua develop and
    Jacksonville needs to help Lawrence develop.
    Urban Meyer up in Jacksonville has a ton of money to spend on his new QB, and you can bet he would just love to snatch Godwin away from us.
    We can’t keep everyone, so like it or not, some players will have to go.
    We are pretty deep at receiver, so I will not be surprised if Chris Godwin plays somewhere else next year.
    Of course, I will not be happy about it.

  30. Buczilla Says:

    I’d love for Godwin to stay, but not at the expense of Shaq, Suh, David, or Succup. If there is any way to get all these guys on the team for 2021, I believe Licht can do it. Make it happen Licht and good luck.

  31. daniel Da Man Says:

    Hey its only money and bragging rights. Me ,ill take the tabletop else where. Put the money on top and ill brag about theoney