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Final predictions for the Bucs’ free agency period

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Will these come true?

NFL: New England Patriots at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
That’s right. Tom Brady is coming to Tampa Bay.
Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

With all the questions surrounding the Bucs, it’s easy to see why there are all different types of directions this team could go when it comes to roster management.

Well don’t worry, not only has free agency finally arrived, but you also have me to be your guiding light.

All donations will be accepted at a later date.

These are ordered from least-confident to most-confident. But I still think they will happen.

5. Tom Brady signs with the Bucs

Before we begin, let’s hold off on the “whether it’s the right call or not” conversation. This is solely about the move.

It just makes too much sense at this point. The Bucs have everything Brady wants outside of a winning pedigree. But guess who does have a winning pedigree? That’s right. Bruce Arians has one.

Even though Tampa Bay has some of the better offensive weapons in the league, I really think it would be Bruce Arians that makes the true difference.

He’s the exact opposite of Bill Belichick. A fun laidback coach who will let Brady do whatever he wants. Touchdown Tommy will get to spend his last years throwing to the some of the best receivers/weapons he’s ever had.

Side bet: It’s a three-year deal. There will likely be some sort of option in the second or third year, but overall, it will be a three-year deal.

4. Chris Godwin gets extended

Instead of spending money on bringing in a top free agent, the Bucs decide to use some of their money on Godwin, who has done nothing but shine since his arrival in Tampa Bay.

An extension not only keeps the Bucs out of a bidding war, but gives the Bucs a chance to sign Godwin for a small discount. It’s a win-win for both parties.

If Brady is signed, then I think the chances of this almost become guaranteed. Brady is going to want to be assured that he will have weapons for his remaining years, and locking up Godwin would be the first step in meeting said assuurance(s).

Side bet: A four-year/$52 million contract sounds about right.

3. Cameron Brate’s status is altered in some capacity

Whether it’s a restructure, a trade, or a release – the Bucs will alter Brate’s impact on the payroll.

I’m hoping he’s restructured in some form or fashion. Brate is a good player and is still valuable to the offense. He also provides reliable depth. With O.J. Howard’s injury history, it’s important to have a pass-catching tight end on deck.

But $6 million just feels like too much. He’s made around $13 million over the last two years. However, I don’t blame him if he doesn’t want to take a pay cut. It’s imperative these guys get paid.

$4 million of his salary is due on March 22, so we will know something soon enough.

Side bet: The Bucs are able to get Brate to restructure his contract.

2. Shaquil Barrett is franchised

This one really isn’t going out on a limb. At this point, it’s pretty clear that the Bucs are going to franchise Shaq. Hopefully a long-term deal can be worked out before the deadline.

Side bet: The Bucs can’t get a deal done before the deadline and Barrett plays on the tag in 2020.


(UPDATE: Barrett was franchise tagged while this post was still waiting for publish, but I have posted tweets with these predictions before the news broke)


1. Breshad Perriman doesn’t return

The market will just be too strong for Perriman. Spotrac has his current value at $8.8 million, which is just too much for the Bucs. When you consider how his career has gone, it would make sense for Perriman to cash out and avoid a discount.

Side bet: He signs with the New York Jets, who lose Robbie Anderson.