Jason Licht Notches Another Victory

March 11th, 2024

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A year ago, Baker Mayfield took what he could get. On Sunday, he took what he wanted.

What a difference 12 months made for a quarterback who could have tested his worth in free agency. Instead, the Bucs showed him the money and Mayfield showed the organization some loyalty, breaking hearts from Atlanta to Las Vegas.

Those who doubt Jason Licht and his brain trust’s ability to navigate free agency do so at their own peril. With Mayfield, Mike Evans and Antoine Winfield Jr. already back in the fold, can Lavonte David and Chase McLaughlin be far behind?


The Bucs are writing a seminar on how to keep your core players together and remain competitive following the departure of an icon like Tom Brady. And while Brady led the 2020 Bucs to the NFL mountaintop, facts are facts: Mayfield proved to be more productive last season than his predecessor had been the year before.

Unless you failed to note that March is always lying season in the NFL, the tell-tale signs were there in plain sight for Mayfield’s return to Tampa.

He was consulted before Liam Coen was hired to replace Dave Canales as offensive coordinator. The signing of Mike Evans before the start of free agency was another indication No. 6 wasn’t going anywhere.

Licht, Mike Greenberg and Jacqueline Davidson have pulled off quite a trifecta — and there’s more to come.

If David decides to retire, that’s his call and Buc Nation will thank him for a splendid 12-year career. But it’s a safe bet that if David suits up this fall, it will be in a Buccaneer uniform. Todd Bowles isn’t about to see McLaughlin leave after he delivered on Tampa Bay’s quest for a bigger leg at kicker.

You can label the upcoming Buc season as The Revenge Tour. Licht, Bowles and even the Glazers are demanding more national respect for a franchise that has hoisted the Vince Lombardi Trophy, followed by three consecutive NFC South titles … all in the past four years.

More team-building ahead for Jason Licht, writes Ira Kaufman.

While there’s plenty to celebrate, holes remain that need to be addressed. Let’s not forget this franchise is 18-19 during the past two seasons.

The pass rush needs a stud edge rusher and the interior of the offensive line requires an upgrade. Tampa Bay generated the fewest rushing yards in the league and only three teams allowed more passing yards. But on a Sunday in early March, this franchise’s spring break turned heads and warmed hearts from Wesley Chapel to Wimauma.

The Bucs are keeping the band together — and the rest of the division can’t be happy with the steady drumbeat coming out of team headquarters.

Mayfield wanted to be a Buccaneer. Evans wanted to be a Buccaneer. There was a time potential free agents couldn’t wait to leave Tampa.

This isn’t one of those times.

Expect Winfield Jr. and Tristan Wirfs to sign long-term extensions this summer. Yes, they like it here, too. If Kyle Trask thought he had a shot to be Tampa Bay’s No. 1 quarterback in 2024, he was only fooling himself. It wasn’t going to happen. It’s probably never going to happen.

We’ll see if that sizable chip across Mayfield’s shoulder pads starts to diminish now that he has cashed in. If he emerges as the face of the franchise, the Bucs would prefer a scowl rather than a smile when Mayfield takes the field.

The news on Mayfield broke on the same day Hollywood handed out its annual awards. Buc fans already feel like winners.

They’re busy laying down the red carpet for No. 6, hoping for a fall blockbuster.

16 Responses to “Jason Licht Notches Another Victory”

  1. BillyBucco Says:

    This guy is one of the best GMs in the league.
    Calm cool and collected.
    Great job at an awesome price man.

  2. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Glorious job man.

    I have a feeling we won’t get a big time edge rusher, and will be bargain shopping but hopefully he can get 2 guys that can = something along the lines of a decent Shaq Barret rotation.

    I’d love to use the draft to just massively upgrade interior O-line and run game. The defense should be able to improve hopefully from just development of so many young starters from last year between Yaya/Calijah/Izien/Zyon

  3. Ugotrobbed Says:

    JL & com…one of the best, if not THE BEST in the NFL!

  4. Joseph C Simmons Says:

    It’s so odd how we still have no idea what we have in Trask. This is most likely his last year here, as he’ll sign with a team in 2025 most likely as a backup with a team that has a shaky QB situation.

    Unless, of course, Baker gets hurt this year and Trask shows something special.

  5. BucsFan Says:

    Never going to happen? Trask is one Mayfield injury from being the starter.

  6. PSL Bob Says:

    Unlike last year when the Bucs’ training camp opened, the 2023 season was a complete black box. We had no clue how Mayfield would perform, or even if he would start. Now we know what the potential for the 2024 season looks like, and expectations are high. Let’s win the Division, but this year lets get a Conference championship to go with it and another SB invitation.

    GO BUCS!!!

  7. Tony Marks Says:

    “We’ll see if that sizable chip across Mayfield’s shoulder pads starts to diminish now that he has cashed in. ”

    OR being a girl dad makes him calmer and gentler. Ace in the hole is the dude still has some real haters out there and he shall we say – aint hard to combust.

    tape up an article trashing him by his jersey saying he isn’t worth the money and he will be off to the races again.

  8. zzbuc Says:

    I am Happy we got BM specially because I think the contract is friendly for the Bucs, but I agree this team needs an upgrade, is not enough bringing the band back together…..

    JL needs to have a great draft…..We can Win our division again, not because we are great because we are not, but because NFC is bad……

  9. Popcorn Mike Says:

    I am kinda with Licht about some things that had been said around the league. A lot of the shorts writers and NFL talking heads don’t give the Bucs much credit. Last year they said the Bucs wouldn’t win but 2 to 5 games they won 9. You don’t hear many of them talking about Evans a guy who is the only receiver in NFL history to start his career with a 1000 or more yards every season played. That’s ok with me Bucs, just keep winning and making them eat their words. As Rodney Dangerfield would say, no respect at all

  10. Upstate NY BUC Says:

    No doubt our best GM in team history!! He gets things done and I think deep inside he thinks like us fans!! Just win Baby… Go Bucs

  11. Richard Dickson Says:

    Looks like we just locked in McLaughlin.

  12. heyjude Says:

    Yes, getting the band back together! Jason Licht is doing a great job.

  13. bucsfaninOregon Says:

    Maybe we can have fewer predictions by the Trasketeirs on this site. BAKER MAYFIELD, get used to it.

  14. Why Not Says:

    We just need to bolster the offensive line, add a quality running back, and sign a pass rusher.

  15. Beeej Says:

    I’m good with Mayfield –when he’s on the field you can tell his teammates have complete confidence in him. Had that same feeling with Brady the first couple years

  16. Baking with Evans Says:

    Great Job Ira!
    I’m ready to run through a wall!