Wasn’t free agency fast?! For the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, it was only w week long. The Bucs started out with roughly $53 Million in salary cap room and instead of signing one or two "top tier" free agents like the previous two years, they decided to wait until the after the major players were signed. While many of us fans are used to it taking weeks for that to happen, it only took two days with the new two day "tampering" period.
By the end of it, the Buccaneers spent $70.5 Million on five players. They re-signed Doug Martin and Chris Conte, replaced retired Logan Mankins with J.R. Sweezy, and signed Brent Grimes and Josh Robinson to create competition at the cornerback position. What many people don’t realize is with newly tendered Bradley McDougald and Russell Shepard, the free agent signings, and the ERFA tags with Jacquies Smith and Jeremiah George, the Buccaneers spent over $33.5 Million towards the 2016 Salary Cap.
OvertheCap.com and Spotrac.com have slightly different cap numbers, because I estimated Grimes new contract numbers as his contract details aren't known. Also, both websites are missing two players based off of the Buccaneers.com roster. To finish it off, my calculation is based on the top 53 players on the roster, not the top 51 that each website and the NFL uses in the offseason. With the NFL Salary Cap ceiling set at $155,270,000 and taking in adjustments, the Buccaneers have close to $19.4 Million in cap room.
With that said, it is likely that the Buccaneers are finished with free agency. While they were rumored to be looking at offensive line help, they just paid Gosder Cherilus $500K as a roster bonus. They also paid Alterraun Verner $2 Million as a roster bonus too. With the NFL Draft coming up at the end of April, OvertheCap.com and Spotrac.com expect it to cost the Buccaneers $6.35 Million to $6.7 Million with their current draft selections. But you also have to take into account the players moving below the top 53 players. With the number represented on OvertheCap.com, the Bucs will only spend an additional $2.6 Million to $3.1 Million towards the NFL salary cap. With the selection’s contracts being subtracted, that gives the Buccaneers about $16.3 Million to $16.7 Million in cap room to start training camp at One Buc Place. You could try to discuss the undrafted free agents but they are given close to $450K, which would below the cut off.
With that being said, $16.5 Million is a lot of salary cap room. But the front office also needs to take care of player’s game bonuses and incentives during the year. If most of them are hit, the Buccaneers need $4.7 Million to cover them. So by the end of training camp, factoring dead money, and everything else, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers only have $11 Million to sign whoever they want. If it was me, I would save that money until the end of the season and sign some players to extensions. Also, it is smart to have a buffer due to injury. The one good thing: in 2017 the Buccaneers have an estimated $82 Million in salary cap room.