It's been almost a year since I posted a FanPost on here. Now before I get into my post, just a few things. The new jerseys are okay and so are the helmets. Thank you Glazers for signing Lovie but I could see that coming from last year since he always loved working with the Bucs. Also, Sander, DraftPhantom, GurSamuel, JC, along with the other moderators, thank you for keeping Bucsnation alive. It's a great website and I love the in-depth stories. One knock though, it would be nice to see FanPosts up closer to the top of the Main Page so I can see all the poster's stories easier and laugh at some of the ideas. But on with the story!
Through this year, we have watch our Buccaneers suffer through a controlling coach, a losing season, and a great change in leadership. Although our GM is unproven in his new role, I can see us being a major powerhouse after a year or two. In this upcoming Free Agency, we will be going after some of the top NFL players in hopes to jump start our team. Now looking at our team as a whole and reading stories from Lovie Smith and Licht, We only have two positions that will not be affected by our Free Agency run. That would be Running Back, which will be a triple headed monster, and Safety, by the words of Lovie and Licht. What we do need as a team is a miracle.
First and foremost, our Quarterback was abused last year by a system that had him running for his life, and failing, and a O-line that watched his skin go from white to purple. The last QB that had that happen to him was David Carr but that lasted multiple years. When I watched the game, I felt that Mike Glennon could become the next Peyton Manning. I just have that gut feeling that he holds himself to a standard that Peyton does. And if you look back in history, Peyton didn't do so good in his first year either. We already signed Mike Kafka although he is more of a Training Camp body. I think we will look into Free Agency for a veteran. Josh McCown and Mike Vick has been mentioned but I feel the Bucs go for someone without a name like Kellen Clemens or Shaun Hill. We need a career back-up to help Glennon, not frustrate him and turn him into Josh Freeman. Also, the signing of Jeff Tedford should help grow Glennon into a much better quarterback since he needs help with his mechanics.
Since the Running Backs have a good mix of bodies whether it be speed, Demps and Smith, or power, Rainey and Martin, I think they will either resign Eric Lorig or get someone who knows how to punch a hole in a linebacker. Maybe a Vonta Leach or Le'Ron McClain. Both are known for big bodies that who can block on running and passing situations.
With our Wide Receivers, I see one great player and that's it. Vincent Jackson was literally the wide receiving corps all of last year. Mike Williams was a disappointment even when he was healthy. We need a fast receiver to compliment Vincent Jackson and to move Mike Williams into the slot position where he flourished in his rookie season. From what I read Dexter McCluster is on our radar but he is agile and short, not fast and tall. I could see us going after Steve Smith, yes THAT one, if he gets released, maybe Emmanual Sanders, or even resent released Santonio Holmes. All three can stretch the field and cause problems for defenses.
For our Tight Ends, I like what I saw out out of Tim Wright. The only issue is he and everyone else can't block. I think it is possible to fix that over the offseason. I do think we will be going big Tight End shopping too. It is also a good possibility we draft one.
From my point of view, I thought the Tackles were in good form. Demar Dotson has grown into a good Right Tackle. Donald Penn was good in my opinion. From the grading statistics last year, he was awful. However, we also didn't have our top four running backs. But even with his salary, age, and possible injury issues, I think he could still be a good tackle for the next few years. However, if we do cut him and give his salary to a younger player we wouldn't save anything. Albert, Collins, Saffold, Trueblood (KIDDING!), will all be asking close to his six million salary. We also need to search for depth but that can be found in the draft or Training Camp.
I was deeply saddened when we released Davin Joseph. He was a great mauler in the trenches when he was healthy. But paying a big man six million to be half the man he was two years ago won't happen. Also, Nicks was just unfortunate to get MRSA. I think he would've been cut too if his salary wasn't guaranteed. But we will be a BIG player in Free Agency with Guards. I think we will be going after Asamoah, Schwartz, or even Wharton from the Panthers. All three will be asking for a salary close to Joseph's old one.
For Center, I think we are stuck with Jeremy Zuttah. Personally, I am not a big fan of four million for a decent guy at center. He played fine last year but that was in a scheme he has known since college. I was saddened when Mack was transition tagged but for now, we will just be looking for depth if not resigning Ted Larsen or Meredith.
I think our strongest position going into this year will be our Defensive Ends. With Da'Quan Bowers not having much issues with his knees and Adrian Clayborn being a good run stopper, I think we are one person from being great here. The news on Bucsnation is Michael Johnson is going to be courted by us. I think that would be great but his production doesn't show. I would also look at Anthony Spencer from the Cowboys. Also, William Ghoston and Steven Means both showed promise last year.
For our Defensive Tackles, Gerald McCoy and Akeem Spence are great for defensive tackles. They fill up the holes and GMC still reminds me of Warren Sapp. The only issue here is depth. I could see them going for an old face of Lovie's Bears. His name is Henry Melton. He should be cheap since he was injured last year but his numbers prior to it were similar to GMC. And on a side note, THANK GOD FOR NO MORE STUNTS!
Our Linebackers are headed by Lavonte David, who hopefully be here for a long time. And since we resigned Jonathan Casillas, I think we have our three Linebackers for next season. Mason Foster has proven that he isn't the next Ruud and Casillas is a decent fit for either back up or opposite to David. As for Lovie's scheme, only two Linebackers are important. If we do go for anyone, it will be in the draft or as backups for these three.
This is the hardest position to think about. On one hand we have Darrelle Revis and his massive salary and on the other we have Johnathan Banks. Banks is coming into his own and should fit into Lovie's scheme but the recent word is Revis and his salary is on the way out. Although he is the best in the game, I don't mind it. I think his salary could pay for two new cornerbacks, for our first and slot. I am going to assume he is gone and I think we will get Tillman for our slot corner. I think for our first, we could go for either Cromartie, Verner(but he is looking elsewhere), Elbert Mack (KIDDING!), or Vontea Davis. Both Tillman and one of these four (three), will still be less than paying Revis.
Since Licht and Lovie have mentioned that our Safeties are great, I will just say we will look for a cheap insurance to Mr. Personal Foul.
For our Kicker and Punter, I think we will keep Barth and Koenen. Although I think Koenen's salary is worthless since he was awful last year punting and getting us out of situations, there isn't much we can do with the selection of punters on the market.
Since it was preached that it will be one of the most important thing, I could see us signing McCluster or Hester to a contract to be a returner. I would like to see them intertwined into our offense in the slot but Hester was awful at it with the Bears. McCluster was intriguing in the Chiefs offense as a Wide Receiver but only in screens.
Well, this is my opinion on how the Buccaneers will approach Free Agency. We will be highly active and spend a great deal on players that will make this team better. I did not include any in-depth looks into the draft as it is too complex to judge. We will know more after the first two weeks of Free Agency.