We’re fully entrenched right in the middle of speculation season. Nothing can be trusted and every rumor holds a grain of truth or twenty.
Antonio Brown will be traded to Oakland, no the Browns, no Buffalo!
Continuing in this time honored tradition is Sheil Kapadia of The Athletic who recently published his list of Top-50 free-agents getting set to enter the 2019 NFL League year and stepped into the abyss trying to match each one with a franchise.
Now, it’s important to realize, Kapadia did this considering,
“....need, scheme fit, cap space and how organizations have historically operated.”
Once I read this line, I honestly expected to see the Tampa Bay Buccaneers left off the list completely, or maybe have one name attached to them. Especially considering the current cap situation.
However, I was surprised to see not one, but two names on the list attached to the Bucs. The first wasn’t so much a surprise, as safety Tyrann Mathieu has been attached to Tampa Bay since news broke Bruce Arians would be coaching the franchise starting in 2019.
Of Mathieu, Kapadia writes,
“Tampa gave up 1,338 yards to slot receivers last season, third-most in the league. So Mathieu’s ability to play nickel is a big bonus.”
This is obviously an intriguing possibility, and there have been some recent reports the Bucs plan to be heavily involved in trying to sign Mathieu, although none have been supported by direct organizational quotes as of yet.
The second of the two free-agent links, came in the form of Atlanta Falcons running back, Tevin Coleman.
Tampa Bay has already signed Andre Ellington this off-season and has 2018 second-round draft pick Ronald Jones under contract for 2019. Last year’s starter, Peyton Barber, is a restricted free-agent and it has not yet been determined if the team will retain him or not at this point.
A combination of Coleman and Jones is definitely an attractive one, and with Ellington chipping in not only as a player, but another coach-like personality in the meeting room this trio could be the best Bucs fans have seen in a long time.
Here’s what the article said about Coleman,
“Arians knew exactly how to use a multi-purpose back in David Johnson in Arizona. Coleman is not Johnson, but he’d be a nice addition to a loaded group of skill position players in Tampa.”
All true. And this trio of backs on top of Mike Evans and O.J. Howard would scare any NFL defensive coordinator.
I go back to the beginning of it all though, and the talk of cap space. In no world I can foresee do the Buccaneers have the cap space to make these moves without some major moves coming in the next few days.
Basically, if this is happening, it means at least DeSean Jackson is officially gone, and possibly even Gerald McCoy with him.
Again, it’s all speculation. But it is thought provoking speculation.