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Cost-efficiency is the Buccaneers' middle name

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Ever wonder how cost-efficient the Tampa Bay Buccaneers? No? You don't care about the amount of money they spend on players and how that compares to the league, and how many wins it's buying them? Oh. Well. I do. So, let's talk about it!

A site called NerdWallet had someone named Sreekar Jasthi compile a bunch of data on sports team spending since 200, and the efficiency with which those teams managed to buy wins. According to their calculations, the Buccaneers rank twelfth in terms of payroll efficiency -- right about the middle of the pack, and well above the bottom of the NFL (hi there Detroit Lions).

That's not because the Bucs were cheap, either. The Bucs' total payroll since 2000 comes to $1.4 billion, pretty much the average for any NFL team. And their 125 adjusted wins rank slightly above average -- though it should of course be noted that most of those wins came way at the start of the 2000s, and the only win of consequence happened during the 2002 season.

Part of the Bucs' efficiency is a result of their smart handling of the salary cap, which has allowed them to largely stay out of ludicrously-priced deals. The most expensive player the signed in the past decade was Darrelle Revis, and the Bucs could cut him after a single season with relatively few losses thanks to the kind of smart contract structure they've consistently employed over the past five seasons.

Of course, payroll efficiency is all well and good, and it's a process that should lead to wins (the Patriots and Colts top this metric after all), but it's of little use if it doesn't actually lead to winning games. And over the past decade, for the Buccaneers, those wins have been few, far between and not of great consequence. But at the some point the smart approach to money management will lead to wins. Or so we all hope.