$25 Million For Chris Godwin?

May 20th, 2024

So how much cash will Chris Godwin demand when his contract ends after this season?

A three-time Super Bowl winning receiver with a good handle on the market weighed in on the subject.

Ed McCaffrey isn’t just Christian McCaffrey’s dad and a host on SiriusXM NFL Radio, he was a stud receiver who once had three 1,000-plus yard seasons in a row catching balls from four different starting quarterbacks.

This week on the airwaves, McCaffrey dissected the explosion of the receivers market when it comes to salaries.

“Now, if you’re a top-10 wide receiver, maybe top-15, moving forward you’re starting at $25 million a year. You’re probably, if you’re negotiating, looking for $26 million or more just based on the top-10,” McCaffrey explained.

Deebo Samuel, Michael Pittman, Jr., Terry McLaurin and Calvin Ridley will all earn between $23 million and $24 million this season.. So Joe is confident Godwin thinks he’s at least valuable as those guys.

Godwin didn’t miss a game last season and had his third consecutive season of 1,000 yards more.

Oh, and Godwin will earn $20 million for the third consecutive season this year.

Joe completely would understand if Godwin is asking for, as McCaffrey suggests, more than $25 million per year on a multiyear deal.

But will he be worth it? Mike Evans will pocket $21 million this year and next with a chance for another $10 million in incentives.

Joe finds it hard to believe Buccaneers Ring of Honor general manager Jason Licht has any interest in moving on from Godwin. Licht drafted him and Godwin has been everything the Bucs have wanted.

“He’s a phenomenal person, a phenomenal player, [and] a great example to this entire team,” Licht said of Godwin last year. “You know, you just you almost take him for granted, he’s there every day working his [butt] off. He came back from a brutal injury and came back faster than everybody expected. You know, he’s just Mr. Consistency.”

However, Joe doesn’t rule out that things might have changed for Godwin. His wife’s social media outburst last season might have been a sign, and Godwin might want to test himself as a No. 1 receiver, something he won’t be in Tampa while Evans is on the roster.

35 Responses to “$25 Million For Chris Godwin?”

  1. Joseph C Simmons Says:

    As much as Licht (and myself) would love the Bucs to keep Godwin, I think salary cap realities will force us to let him go. You can only invest so much in one position group, and with his presumed replacement Jalen McMillan drafted this year, Licht would have a tough time justifying $25M against the cap.

    For what it’s worth, I really do think Godwin would make an excellent #1 WR in the right offense.

  2. Boss Says:

    I will admit….that is steep $$ for how much we use him.

    will have to move on. just wish they had better succession plan in place for him AND mike

    Pretty sure Godwin can be replaced. We might need a 1st round WR next year though.

  3. SB~LV Says:

    Move on…

  4. Durango 95 Says:

    Guy is a heck of a player. Has he lost some his mojo from the injury he suffered a couple of seasons ago, maybe. Would it be a gamble to spend mega cash on Godwin when it seems like his tread might be starting to wear, maybe. Would it be more judicious to draft a WR high in the draft next year, maybe. Will this be a pivotal year for Godwin and the Bucs, I have to think so.

  5. jason honeycutt Says:

    Terrible article. He wont get 15 from anyone! Not explosive. He might be a camp casualty!

  6. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Love Chris Bucs have been spoiled with eight years of two elite receivers but CG’s body has taken too much damage to invest that kind of money. It would not be wise and if that’s what he wants I would trade him now or let him walk next year.

  7. George R Says:

    Joe you said everything.

    “Godwin might want to test himself as a No. 1 receiver, something he won’t be in Tampa while Evans is on the roster.”

    He is a # 2 WR and you don’t pay your #2 WR $25 million.

  8. MadMax Says:

    uhg…im staying out of this one….lets see what he does this year and see what Jalen gives us first. But I love Chris, pushed for us to draft him.

  9. miken Says:

    Will probably have to draft his replacement for cost.

  10. Crickett Baker Says:

    Godwin should be a Buc for life. I can’t imagine him in another jersey. He was not used properly last season.

  11. SlyPirate Says:


    More than any other position, Licht has a gift for drafting WR. The Bucs will be moving on from Godwin in 2025, but he’ll be forever appreciated by the fan base.

  12. catcard202 Says:

    Frankly, Bucs cannot afford to overvalue their own players given what is on the books & coming down the line. (Wirfs big deal next offseason & then FA’s will need to be signed to fill the void of the FO’s 2021 draft class failures…Before potentially 3-5 from the 2022 class need reupped on 2nd deals….Plus a QB1 to replace Baker or massive coin to sign him back.)

    Godwin is a good #2 & has given TB everything they needed.
    But players are commodities & you need to know when to move your money in a better direction.

    At $25M/yr or more…and wanting “long term” security…It doesn’t make sense to invest in ages 29-32 on a 4yr deal for CG, when considering the additional Dead Money that’s on his current deal.

    At the end of 2024, offer marginal money to extend his stay in Tampa…Let him walk in FA when his people reject it & let him sign elsewhere…Then make sure Bucs are in line to collect the (likely 3rd rd) Comp pick for losing his services.

    If the Bucs scouting department is worth their salt…They can identify the next great Bucs WR available via the draft for penny’s on the dollar.

  13. geno711 Says:

    Rachaad White and Chris Godwin are kind of the same type of valuable guys to me.

    When you look at their yards per reception or yards per carry, they each fall a little bit short. When you look at the number of touchdowns that they get in a season, they both fall a little bit short.

    They both had nice timed speeds for suggested NFL production but when you look at actual games, neither explodes with athleticism.

    But when you look how both are able to get 1st downs on 3rd down passing downs, they both excel at getting 1st downs for us for keeping drives going.

    You need guys like them on your offense to keep drives going. They are very valuable there.

    They are just not as valuable as Baker, ME, Wirfs, Vea, Winfield, etc.

  14. Dave Pear Says:

    He knows he needs to go to a team with a decent head coach if he wants to win another Super Bowl.

  15. Brian in St Pete Says:

    I absolutely love CG. He’s been nothing short of a tremendous teammate, captain, and character guy as a complement to ME. That being said…my opinion is that he may struggle as a #1 if a team tries to make him one just as Alvin Harper did for us when we poached him form the Cowboys so long ago. A true number one has to excel on the outside, had to constantly win against double teams, and has to be a sure thing on 50/50 balls. None of these things are strengths of CG. I see him as an elite #2 but I have questions about his ability to be a #1. I always have. My sincere hope is that he wants to keep this machine running in TB and takes a team deal somewhere around the neighborhood of 3/$15-$20 per. I believe that’s where his best value is in the NFL.

  16. Dude Says:

    Well, you pay Godwin what you pay partially because of his track record as a player, and what you can project he provides as a piece of our offense. Love Mike Evans, but he’s not the YAC guy on this team and hardly has been that guy in his career. Also Mike doesn’t provide the same level of reliability Godwin has as a threat in the middle the field either. Godwin is valuable to us because he does some of the things our #1 WR doesn’t have to do.

    Godwin would be considered an assent in most WR rooms around the league and he’s still closer to his prime than he is on the way out of it.

    187 catches
    106 1st downs
    2047 yards(912yds YAC)
    5 rec TDS
    1 rushing TD
    in 30 Games since coming back from his ACL injury

    Chris Godwin should be in Tampa as long as we have a team and/or Mike Evans. There are plenty of ways for Licht & Greenberg to rework his deal with bonuses/voided yrs to lower his cap hit until we find out whether Parker or McMillan are the next up.

  17. Bucs Guy Says:

    Agree with Brian, but I think the Bucs want to see how some of their other WRs do this year before making a decision. If Jarrett, Palmer or McMillan step up, CG will be gone because I don’t see him taking a reasonable deal even though that would be the smart thing to do for the next 3-4 years at least.

  18. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    There comes a time when you have to draft a replacement for a high-priced player……if JMac isn’t Godwin’s replacement then draft him

    Love him but we can’t keep everybody.Let him go & get a comp pick.

  19. Beeej Says:

    I don’t think having 2 $20 million+ receivers is a big a thing as people make it out to be. As soon as Jensen and Shaq’s money is off the books, it’ll be even easier

  20. Toad Bowels Says:

    Agree with Dude. CG is a wonderful WR and let’s see what he can do in Liam Coens offense in 2024 and then figure a way to keep him as a Buc on a contract fair to both the team and to Chris.

    There is value in a community admired guy who does his job and does it well without being a distraction to the team.

    We don’t need another Antonio Brown, Beckham, Chad Johnson, Terrell Of wens etc prima Donna at WR. Love Chris and hope Bucs can find a way to keep him with the team on a fair contract to both Chris and the team.

    There are some Bucs that after their playing careers are done would be great coaches or front office guys. Guys like LaVonte, Mike, Chris, I hope they are around for a long time.

  21. Booger Says:

    This season will determine his market. He’s a strong number two, and that’s the area they are bringing now, but he was showing lots of wear. IF he shows that ‘juice’ again this season (that he once had) AND remains fully healthy throughout, then he’ll end up getting Mike Evans $$$ somewhere, at about $20MIL plus incentives. That was a helluva hometown discount we got on Mike. The Bucs CAN afford to pay Godwin… It just depends on their ‘feelings’ they get concerning his wear moving forward, with whether or not they want to. A Mike Evans style ‘short term’ 2yr deal with heavy incentives is a win/win ‘low-risk’ deal… You’d hate to lose him for nothing by allowing him to walk. Again, it depends on how this season ends up playing out and with how good and explosive this offense (and Chris) is!!!! The reality is this is just how much a legit strong Number-2 (fringe #1) WR is going to cost moving forward. Everyone else is figuring out a way to PAY FOR it… And, top-dollar at QB and other positions, too. I’m confident that SO CAN THE BUCS. We Can’t Allow Them Off The Hook. When we get a fully rebuilt squad primed for another run, then we have to hold them accountable making them willing to PAY (top-dollar) again.

  22. Bojim Says:

    Jalen won’t necessarily replace him. Let’s see what happens this year. Need more TDs. Not worth 25 though. Hope he stays somehow.

  23. Defense Rules Says:

    Beej … ‘I don’t think having 2 $20 million+ receivers is a big a thing as people make it out to be.’

    I agree with you Beej, BUT … Bucs may have 2 x $20 mil + receivers, but we also have several others making even more than that. The question becomes how many high-$$$ mouths can you feed and still stay competitive with the rest of the roster?

    If we re-sign Godwin for $25 mil, we’d probably be paying our Top-7 players 150 – $160 mil …

    o Mayfield – $33.3 mil
    o Winfield – $21 mil
    o Evans – $20.5 mil
    o Wirfs – $18.2 mil (probably rise by $8-$10 mil)
    o Godwin – $25 mil
    o Vea – $17.8 mil
    o Dean – $13 mil

    None of that counts incentives of course. Leaves us with about $100 mil (this year’s CAP is $255 mil but future years will surely rise) to feed the remaining 47 players, plus pay some pretty high Dead CAP for several years.

    Can it be done? Of course, but we’d better be prepared for a lot of those remaining 47 players to leave for greener pastures once their first 4 years is up. And we’ll need a lot of those younger guys to perform very well during their initial 4-years with us for the Bucs to remain competitive.

  24. Hearty Dikerson Says:

    Mayfield seemed to have trouble finding Godwin last year when he was playing on the outside. I expect his return to the slot will produce greater results. But then the question becomes do you pay a slot receiver $25M?


    Chris hasn’t really had a great season so I know he’s good but can it be good when it counts

  26. Dude Says:

    “Mayfield seemed to have trouble finding Godwin last year when he was playing on the outside.”

    This is the quiet part being said out loud, because Mayfield was missing opportunities to hit Mike & Chris on the outside. Still wanna see how Coen works with Baker throwing over the middle of the formation still makes me cringe, but hey he’s our QB until he’s no longer our QB.

  27. Pickgrin Says:

    I think a lot depends on how CG plays in 2024. And McMillan as well…

    We still haven’t seen the guy that was absolutely killing it in the games just before he got seriously injured towards the end of the ’21 season. (targeted by the Saints safety – bet he got a nice secret bonus for taking CG out).

    Brady was finding Godwin like crazy leading up to that injury and CG was catching them all seemingly and making tons of explosive plays.

    That explosiveness – the unstoppability factor – its been largely missing from Godwin’s game the last 2 years. As has Chris’ ability to score TDs…

    2019 – 9 TDs
    2020 – 7 TDs
    2021 – 5 TDs
    2022 – 3 TDs
    2023 – 2 TDs

    Even with 1000 yards and 80-100 catches – that is NOT the trend you want to see in your $20+Million receiver.

    There’s nothing else to do but let this whole year play out and then make a decision.

    Chris is a special player when healthy and exactly the type of person and player and leader you want in your locker room if at all possible….

    But from an unbiased overview type of perspective – it seems pretty hard to justify paying two WRs over $20M when there are so many good WRs coming out of the draft every single year these days…. and our GM seems quite good at drafting for that position….

  28. JA Says:

    All Godwin does is catch the passes Evans drops.

  29. Stanglassman Says:

    Godwin was essential for BA’s system. Really needed in Canalas’s. Hopefully, Coen’s system doesn’t rely so heavily on Godwin. I love the guy but don’t see how we keep him next year.

  30. 1sparkybuc Says:

    Godwin leads the team in catch percentage every year. I wouldn’t doubt that he holds the career franchise record as well. Even with being ignored for half the season by Canales and Mayfield, he still racked up a 1,000 yard season, his third consecutive btw. He deserves to retire a Buc, and not anytime soon. Mayfield focused on Evans too much, when his most dependable receiver was Godwin. Hopefully Mayfield can make better use of the weapons he has available this season.

  31. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    MadMax Says:
    May 20th, 2024 at 11:30 am
    “…lets see what he does this year and see what Jalen gives us first.”

    This is smart!

    Also, we have young guys who could step up this year as well.

  32. Eckwood Says:

    Nope !! Less than 20, he’s just not a great separation guy outside !!
    Great Slot guy w avg speed

  33. Crickett Baker Says:

    1Sparky, I had to read all the comments before I found yours. I completely agree. Did anyone see CG drop balls? Did anyone see him play badly? I maintain that no one did. He just suddenly was not utilized properly. I wish someone would list how many balls he caught per year until last year. He is much better than any first-year rookie we could find for 2025, I believe.

  34. Greg Says:

    I am sure someone already said this but…. Chris Godwin as a camp casualty? That may very well be the stupidest thing I have heard in the comments here. Congratulations, there’s a new standard for idiocy.

  35. teacherman1983 Says:

    Same deal as Mike.

    3 years. Same salary. Easy.