Ultimate Power Returns To Jason Licht

March 31st, 2022

We have now entered Phase 4 of general manager Jason Licht’s career as Bucs general manager.

Hopefully, it doesn’t end quickly with a relocation to Phase 2 of Del Boca Vista.

Licht entered One Buc Palace with Lovie Smith as the almighty head coach wielding the big Bucs stick back in 2014. Licht was a first-time general manager coming from the Arizona Cardinals, where it’s safe to say everything was run nearly the opposite of how Lovie wanted things done. Licht was hired after Lovie and with Lovie’s approval, and intelligent fans know what that implies: that Licht had limited power over personnel.

Lovie got ousted in two years and Dirk Koetter was promoted for 2016 to head coach, which meant Licht had full control of all things Bucs football. Licht’s Phase 2 began but ended in a soiled mess. The Bucs had back-to-back 5-11 seasons, players weren’t developing to their fullest and the locker room had issues, and their starting quarterback had agreed to be labeled an NFL sex offender under the league’s conduct policy.

But Team Glazer stuck with Licht for Phase 3, as a matured Licht lured Bucco Bruce Arians to coach the team. The pair were a perfect duo sharing power in lockstep, and Licht’s acumen with the salary cap and the draft earned a positive spotlight. Yes, Tom Brady helped immensely, but his presence shouldn’t diminish Licht’s accomplishments.

Plus, Brady wouldn’t have come without Arians, and Arians wouldn’t have taken the job without his old buddy Licht in charge.

Now Arians has stepped aside and Joe believes Licht has regained ultimate power like he had from 2016 through 2018. But this time around Licht has more experience and savvy, and likely even more of a free hand from ownership because of all he’s accomplished.

Joe thinks Licht is ready for Phase 4. However, Joe does see it as a significant transition. Joe will not pretend that the handoff from the greatest head coach in Bucs history to Todd Bowles is an another-day-at-the-office happening.

21 Responses to “Ultimate Power Returns To Jason Licht”

  1. Earl Bedford Says:

    Not so fast Joe! Per sources, Tom Brady remains Head Coach, GM, OC, QB Coach, Head Athletic Trainer, Scout, Recruiter and Bookie! (My source is from a former player, last year, who was ready to go)

  2. Brandon Says:

    Any good GM drafts players that fit what they do on offense and defense. He drafted Hargreaves because dog sh!t Mike Smith liked off man corners (Grimes). He drafted Howard to be Koetter’s Tony Gonzalez. He got the coaches exactly who they wanted. It was their poor schemes and coaching that made the draft picks not successful. Light made plenty of picks and player acquisitions under Koetter that have played extremely well. 2/5 of last years OL. Godwin, Rojo, Vea, Barrett, JPP, C.Davis.

  3. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The test for Licht is having the 25 plus draft position instead of top 15…..we’ll see…..JTS was his first…..lets see how he turns out and who the pick is this year.

    Vea, White, Wirfs…….pretty good picks but hard to miss that high.

  4. David Says:

    They should keep him as GM for as long as he wants to do it. One of the best in the business

  5. D-Rome Says:

    Nice article Joe. It will be interesting to see how Licht will run the team over the next few years. I’m certain the past three years wasn’t ALL Bruce Arians. I have to believe of all the lessons Licht has learned in his tenure is to not be afraid of swinging for the fences. Once Brady retires what’s to stop him from trying to get another big name?

  6. Ash Says:

    Pretty much is a kind of a handoff as arians will still be around and pretty much everyone one on the coaching staff being the same.

  7. a-bomb Says:

    Totally disagree about draft position. Just because you are drafted in the top 15 does not guarantee any more success than being drafted in the bottom 17. Licht has done a good job in all of the draft of finding guys that are not only talented but also players.

  8. Allbuccedup Says:

    If the bucs can’t get Zion Johnson or Kenyon Green at pick 27 they should trade down. The rest of the offensive guards have similar talents you can pick one up in the third. There are about 5 to 6 defensive tackles you can get in the second round. Jordan Davis will be the only tackle to go in the first round.

  9. ocala Says:

    The 2020 draft was phenomenal. The 2021 draft looks average after only one year.

  10. Thisisouryear!!! Says:

    Joe- Do we receive an extra 3rd round draft pick as the comments were saying last night? Thanks.

  11. DEEEMO Says:

    If they can’t get Zion Johnson…will be DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE in this draft. Maybe a late round running back but D-LINE AND D-BACKS. Remember who the head coach is now….Brady & Leftwich will run the Offense..

  12. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    I agree with DEEEMO. With Bowles as head coach, you can bet we will be drafting defense, as it should be.
    As long as our O Line holds up, we are set on Offense. It is the defense that needs some help.

  13. GOB Says:


  14. Eckwood Says:

    Arians clearly helped Licht ,,, Huge Example / McCoy thanks for your service , now sign the enforcer / true leader / true football professional…. Suh

  15. HC Grover Says:

    Too much, The Magic Bus. I want it I want it.

  16. Stanglassman Says:

    The draft board has been set for awhile now. Minor changes might happen but it’s not going to be drastically altered because Bowles is HC now. Jason was the GM before BA retired to the front office and he’ll be the GM for the draft.

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    JL had some miserable drafts UNTIL BA saddled up. As of right now, we have…

    o 2014 draft: 1 player still a Buc (ME13) … Rnd 1
    o 2015 draft: 1 player still a Buc (D Smith) … Rnd 2
    o 2016 draft: 0 players still Bucs
    o 2017 draft: 1 player still a Buc (Godwin) … Rnd 3
    o 2018 draft: 2 players still Bucs (Vea Rnd 1 & Davis Rnd 2)

    But starting in 2019 when BA arrived …

    o 2019 draft: 6 players still Bucs (White Rnd 1, SMB Rnd 2, Dean & Edwards Rnd 3, Nelson Rnd 4, Miller Rnd 6)
    o 2020 draft: 4 players still Bucs (Wirfs Rnd 1, Winfield Rnd 2, Vaughn Rnd 3, T Johnson Rnd 5).
    o 2021 draft: 6 players still Bucs (JTS Rnd 1, Trask Rnd 2, Hainsey Rnd 3, Darden Rnd 4, Britt Rnd 5, Stuard Rnd 7)

    The ‘quality’ of our draft picks improved significantly IMO, but what I think is most significant is that Bucs’ coaching staff is doing a very good job developing our own players/draft picks. Wasn’t the case for far too many years in ‘The Lost Decade’. I attribute that to BA’s vision & leadership related to TEAM-BUILDING. For THAT Bucs’ fans owe him a huge debt of gratitude. I tend to think that, as Senior Consultant, he’ll have tremendous input into our draft process for several years to come.

  18. D-Rome Says:

    Eckwood, I tend to agree. If a player who wore 93 goes into the ring of honor it should be Suh and not McCoy.

  19. Kobe Faker Says:


    Soon GM Brady is going to bring in Gronk and Edelman

    and Licht wouldnt even know about it”

    Kobe Faker

  20. nick houllis Says:

    I would say Arians moving to head of football operations can mean MANY THINGS, some among them being Licht having less power, not more. who knows.

  21. Kent Kleist Says:

    who is the sex offender quarterback mentioned? Is that was happened to Josh f