clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Buccaneers 2016 free agency: Good, bad and ugly

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been pretty active in free agency. With all the major moves in the rear-view mirror, let's take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.

The good: filling needs

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers managed to fill all of their needs. They re-signed Doug Martin. They added J.R. Sweezy to fill Logan Mankins' shoes. They signed two cornerbacks in Brent Grimes and Josh Robinson. They found an edge rusher in Robert Ayers. They retained Chris Conte and Bradley McDougald at safety. They even managed to add some competition at punter in Bryan Anger.

There's not a single real need left on the roster. That's a good thing.

It's not just good because filling needs is an obvious thing any team wants to do. It's good because filling those needs allows the Bucs to take who they consider to be the best player available in the draft, something general manager Jason Licht has emphasized. Of course, needs -- both future and depth -- will still feature in draft strategy. But it gives the team a little more flexibility.

The bad: contracts and short-term players

While the Bucs filled their needs, it came at a price: they paid pretty big numbers for players who are very close to the end of their careers. 33-year-old Brent Grimes is getting $7 million this year. 30-year-old Robert Ayers is getting $7.5 million. J.R. Sweezy's just 26, but his $9.5 million price tag this year is hefty for a guard with an inconsistent history.

These problems aren't that significant given the team's extremely healthy cap situation. But it also means the Bucs haven't solved their long-term problems. Not only because some of these players will inevitably disappoint -- such is the fate of NFL roster moves -- but because the most prominent additions will not be with the team for more than a couple of years regardless of how well they play.

That means that this draft, we're still talking about filling the long-term needs even if the short-term ones are filled. It also means we'll be talking about those needs next year, too. And by that time, we'll also have seen new needs open up.

The ugly

Mike Glennon still has not been traded. And that's more of a luxury problem than an ugly thing. The only other truly ugly thing I can think of is Josh Robinson's comments on gay marriage. There really isn't much ugliness to talk about. so far. That's good.