September 25, 2023

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Guide By The Licht Part 2: Free Agency

3 min read

There were a ton of free agent signings, aka “Cannon Fodder” or “Camp Bodies” and low-level depth acquired. There were too many to name, so I only pulled some of the bigger, known acquisitions.

Tampa Bay’s 2014 free agent class:

Michael Johnson, Josh McCown, Anthony Collins, Alterraun Verner, Evan Smith, Mike Jenkins, Clinton McDonald, Jorvorskie Lane, Patrick Murray (future), Brandon Meyers, Andrew DePaola. Overall this was not a bad deal by Licht.

Tampa Bay’s 2015 free agent class:

Chris Conte, Andy Wilder, Henry Melton, Sterling Moore, Bruce Carter, Adarius Taylor, Adam Humphries (UFA), Donteea Dye (UFA) Jude Adjei-Barimah (UFA), Ryan Griffin (from Saints/waiver), Connor Barth, Tony McDaniel. Conte’s contract with the Bucs ended at the conclusion of this past season and Humphries and Taylor are both gone, the rest have not been on the team for quite a while. Not an overall terrible free agency.

Tampa Bay’s 2016 free agent class:

Doug Martin (re-signed), J.R. Sweezy, Brent Grimes, Robert Ayers, Brian Anger, Daryl Smith, Josh Robinson, Keith Tandy (re-signed), Cecil Shorts, Javien Elliott (UFA), Freddie Martino, Bernard Reedy, JacQuizz Rodgers, and Chris Conte (re-signed). Sweezy and Ayers had served Tampa well, but both of them got hurt. Aside from signing Sweezy, Daryl Smith, and re-signing Martin, this was a decent free agency.

Tampa Bay’s 2017 free agent class:

William Gholston (Re-signed 5-year extension)DeSean Jackson, T.J. Ward, Nick Folk, J.J. Wilcox, Chris Baker, Bobo Wilson (UFA), Riley Bullough (UFA), and Peyton Barber (UFA). Jackson never gelled with the Bucs. The chemistry was never there, and he was a cancer in the locker room. Chris Baker just flat out sucked. Gholston is still with the team despite fan’s saying he should be cut. Rodgers did ok when given a chance. Barber and Gholston are the only ones from this FA class who are still with the Bucs. Aside from acquiring Peyton Barber and Bobo Wilson, this was an overall terrible free agency.

Tampa Bay’s 2018 free agent class:

Mike Evans (Re-signed/ big contract), Cameron Brate (re-signed/ big contract), Brent Grimes (re-signed), Peyton Barber (re-signed), Ali Marpet (re-signed/big Contract), Cairo Santos, Chandler Catanzaro, Riley Bullough (Re-signed), Adarius Taylor (re-signed), Javien Elliott (re-signed), Adam Humphries (re-signed), De’Vante Harris, Beau Allen, Mitch Unrein, Ryan Jensen, Sergio Bailey (UFA), Shaun Wilson (UFA), Donnie Ernsberger (UFA)Godwin Igwebuike (UFA), and Vinny Curry. The Bucs also traded for Jason Pierre-Paul. I believe the Bucs hit on JPP, Evans, Allen, Brate, Marpet, Santos, and Barber. Everybody else, in my opinion was a bad signing. Tampa Bay’s 2019 free agent class:

It was tough to see Kwon Alexander and Adam Humphries walk out the door in free agency, however, along with DeSean Jackson getting traded and releasing Curry, Brian anger, and Mitch Unrein, it freed up a lot of cap space so we could sign some solid free agents.

Tampa Bay’s FA signings this year include Shaquil Barrett, Breshad Perriman, Ryan Griffin (re-signed), Deone Bucannon, Cairo Santos (re-signed), Kevin Minter (re-signed), Kentrell Brice, Rakeem Nunez-Roches (re-signed),De’Vante Harris (re-signed), Bradley Pinion, Phillip Anderson, Andre Ellington, and Earl Watford. The additions of Perriman and Barrett in the wake of Alexander and Humphries leaving the team may not make sense now, but if we trust Arians and Licht, we may be in for a treat. time will tell and free agency isn’t even close to being over yet. There could be another acquisition, or two, in the near future.

Hopefully, this free agent class works out much better than the past free agent classes that the Bucs have signed under Bucs GM Jason Licht. I also look forward to the upcoming draft in April. Licht and the Bucs have to hit a home run with every pick in this next draft. I am confident that the new Bucs head coach Bruce Arians, who has a long track record of success in the NFL, can start to right this ship, but Jason Licht has to give him the right player personnel to be able to do it. I’m excited about the draft, I look forward to it as well as the season. Go Bucs!