It’s Official. Bucs Haven’t Replaced Russell Gage.

December 14th, 2023

Deven Thompkins (left) talks to Trey Palmer at practice.

Joe is a production guy. Produce. Let’s see it on paper, as well via the eye test.

Wide receiver Russell Gage played in 13 Bucs games last season and racked up 51 catches for 426 yards and 5 touchdowns. He was banged up often and didn’t look very explosive. However, notice how every returning Bucs pass catcher is more explosive this season? As in more yards per catch?

Three men were tasked to replace Gage after he was lost in August with a bad knee injury: rookies Trey Palmer and Rakim Jarrett, plus second-year man Deven Thompkins.

Through 13 games, the threesome has combined for 47 catches for 386 yards and 3 TDs. Receiver David Moore added one catch after Jarrett went on injured reserve. So Gage’s production has not been replaced.

“This Joe” believes Gage is a forgotten loss to this Bucs roster. General manager Jason Licht restructured Gage’s contract this past offseason and brought him back for 2023 with a paycut as the No. 3 receiver. It sure would have been nice to have his experienced hand in these final four games.

Gage is sure to be gone this offseason because of his salary and the bad knee. And the Bucs are probably dumping Thompkins and Moore with him if those guys don’t step up in these final four games.

25 Responses to “It’s Official. Bucs Haven’t Replaced Russell Gage.”

  1. DFW Buc Says:

    Part of that reduction is due to the QB and offensive coordinator. Mr dink and dunk also does not work with a running game that does not pull extra players into the box. Just admit that this is a team that doesn’t have the talent in key areas and combine that with poor coaching to maximize what they do have. Brady overcame a lot of poor coaching and Mayfield doesn’t have his talent.

  2. Brazilian fan Says:

    It’s Official. Bucs Haven’t Replaced Tom Brady!

  3. Larrd Says:

    Gage’s numbers with Brady barely beat the numbers of two rookies’ (a sixth rounder and UFA) and a 150 pounder who are playing with an average qb in a new offense that was concocted by a rookie OC under the tutelage of Todd Bowles.

    Gage was not much of a loss. He failed to replace Antonio Brown. That was a problem.

    The Bucs should draft a wideout in round one, nevertheless. Ebuka, maybe. Nabers if he is there.

  4. BucsFan81 Says:

    Gage is another player with an inflated contract that he never lived up to. Give him an injury settlement and move on.

  5. Jack Clark Says:

    Doesn’t help that Baker Mayfield is a one read quarterback and you’re his fourth read because you’re the 3rd string WR so you’re likely not getting the ball 😝

  6. Buc4evr Says:

    Has Moore given that many chances? Doesn’t seem to me he has that many targets?

    Think a lot of the issues are with the pass plays drawn up by Canales and the fact that Mayfield doesn’t do a good job of reading his progressions? Canales just doesn’t seem to be able to adjust to what the defense is doing. Think the guy was a terrible choice for an offense that needs lots of help to score points. Instead the Bucs are trying to run the ball up the middle for 1 yard gains, leading to third and long.

    Don’t think either Moore or Thompkins are the problem. Get rid of Bowles and Canales first.

  7. realistic-optimistic Says:

    notice how every returning Bucs pass catcher is more explosive this season? As in more yards per catch?

    Have to be honest. This is thanks to Canales. He’s still got a long way to go, but his passing game at least tries to scheme WRs open. Lefty only ran mano y mano option routes. He put all the pressure on the WRs and none on the OC. This year is different, and we’re seeing decent YAC numbers across the board. Even Mike is having his best season in that regard.

  8. Beeej Says:

    Teams seemed to have figured out how to pay just enough attention to the run, as well as doubling ME13 and CG. That scenario makes us REALLY miss Gage

  9. Larrd Says:

    Moore and Thompkins and Palmer and Jarrett.

    I like the rookies okay, but c’mon. After Evans and Godwin, the receiving crew (including TEs) is unproven, at best. Pedestrian talents, probably.

    If the line and running attack continues to improve down the stretch, Canales would have done a fine job this year.

    Then, draft a wideout in first round.

  10. THETRUTH Says:

    You mean we dont have player on injured list and sitting out games as much as russelll gage. Remember he wasnt the slot WR where Chris was maybe if these new guys played on outside we would see more production from them and Chris.

    Russell brought nothing to the team in his years here cause often injured

  11. Lt. Dan Says:

    I really like what I’ve seen from Moore – just haven’t seen enough…as in opportunities.

  12. stpetebucfan Says:

    “Brady overcame a lot of poor coaching and Mayfield doesn’t have his talent.”

    And yet with the same coaching staff they have EXACTLY the same record this year with Mayfield as they had last season with Brady. The Bucs will only need to go 2-2 to match the GOAT’s record from last year. Win 3 of the last 4 and the Mayfield led Bucs will be better than last year’s Brady Bucs!


  13. Beeej Says:

    AND…. we’re scoring more than last year!

  14. realistic-optimistic Says:

    The offense is not quite the same as last year. 1+1=2, but so does -4+6. You can arrive at the same result by taking different paths.

    Last year we had 1 good OL (Wirfs). Last year we had no running game (and didn’t even try). Last year we had a very distracted and immobile QB that was extremely accurate and excellent at diagnosing defenses. Last year we had an OC with zero talent or creativity.

    This year we have good players at LT, RT, and RG. We have a commitment to the run game and a more explosive RB. We have a QB that can escape sacks and take hits, but has so-so field vision, and sub-par accuracy. We have an OC that tries to scheme WRs into open space. Sometimes it works, sometimes not so much.

    Two separate paths, despite similar offensive production.

  15. donuts Says:

    12-6 = 6 (Brady – Mayfield) = less than you had before. Its not that Mayfield is bad, he is not just that he is not elite like Brady. The stats are actually close but I would argue two teams can hardly ever be compared due to injuries and FA. Brady had more intangibles and guys bought into the mystique. Baker is playing for his NFL life and doing a hell of a job. He is not the reason why we lost many of the games. PS- keep feeding ME13 the ball. He is greatness!

  16. MartyB Says:

    Replaced Gage ? We have replaced WR3 production lost when AB jumping jacked his way out of the NFL !

  17. Jeff’s grandpa Says:

    NFL owners are missing the boat with all these future Sean Mcvays can’t imagine why no one’s hired one of y’all

  18. Knucknbuc Says:

    I knew Moore should’ve been the 3rd receiver when the season started but the Bucs wanted to go all young guys which rarely if ever works out. No time like the present to start working him in

  19. Bucs13 Says:

    @realistic. Thank you for putting things into context. The roster Brady did last year was much worse than this year. He has no OL. You need a decent OL to protect a 45 year old QB. Give Brady time and he will dissect a D.

  20. orlbucfan Says:

    Brady was a fossil who should have retired before the start of last season. Antonio Brown? A certified nutcase who the Bucs didn’t need. They would have won the SB without him. Plus, they would have saved some cap money. r-o, you’re actually being positive about Canales? Get your brain checked.

  21. Wild Bill Says:

    IT would be more.accurate to say that they did not exceed a declining Gage who was way past his prime.

  22. Rod Munch Says:

    Who are these retards bad mouthing Brady? I mean you have to be a special kind of stupid to talk trash about Brady. I’m going to guess it has something to do with an uncle and a #12 jersey when you were a kid – but man, that was the 1950s, let it go.

  23. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    stpetebucfan Says
    “And yet with the same coaching staff they have EXACTLY the same record this year with Mayfield as they had last season with Brady.”

    Couple of things on that:

    Why not compare the last 5 years of both?

    Brady was messed up last year, and I think several things were the reason. Arians retiring right after he came back. Divorce. Lawsuits.Bowles becoming head coach. Losing his center, Injuries all over the place…it’s pretty obvious that we did not have the true Brady last year.

    Case in point, if Brady would have played for us this year for the same money as
    mayfield ( in theory) just to prove last year was a fluke…which would you rather have.

    What your point tells me is that Mayfield MIGHT be as good as a really messed up Brady.

  24. darengibo Says:

    Wait. I thought R.White is WR3

  25. garro Says:

    I think Gage was paid on Saturday and called in sick on Sunday.

    Just sayin

    Go Bucs!