The PewterReport.com Roundtable options the opinions of the PR employees because it tackles a subject every week that includes the Bucs. This week’s subject: What Is The Bucs’ Largest Non-QB Offseason Want?
Scott Reynolds: Who The Hell Is Going To Play Operating Again?
The Bucs undoubtedly want to handle the broad receiver place this offseason. Re-signing franchise participant Chris Godwin and discovering a legit, starting-caliber No. 3 broad receiver is a should. Bruce Arians’ offense is quarterback- and broad receiver-driven. I get that, however I’ll go away different that subject for different Pewter Reporters. Let’s discuss a place that’s close to and pricey to my coronary heart: operating backs. I do know the NFL has develop into a passing league. That’s positive. Operating backs in Arians’ system are nonetheless tremendous precious, particularly ones that may play on third down. The Bucs want to search out operating backs who can catch and move shield, in addition to carry the rock, both in free company and/or the draft.
Because it stands proper now, Ke’Shawn Vaughn and not too long ago re-signed Kenjon Barner are the one operating backs on the roster. Starter Leonard Fournette, Giovani Bernard and Ronald Jones II are all slated to be free brokers. Jones and the Bucs will half methods. There’s an opportunity Fournette returns if the worth is true, maybe at not more than $6 million per season. He proved he might run, catch and move shield. Fournette totaled 1,266 yards (812 yards dashing, 454 yards receiving) and 10 touchdowns regardless of lacking three and a half video games. There’s an opportunity both Fournette or Bernard come again to Tampa Bay. However there’s additionally an opportunity neither comes again, leaving the Bucs to search out three extra runners to spherical out the depth chart and compete with Vaughn.
Some names to remember in free company embrace Kansas Metropolis’s Darrel Williams and Jerick McKinnon, Washington’s J.D. McKissic and Arizona’s Chase Edmonds. All are good receivers. The draft is stuffed with gamers that may run and catch, too. Pewter Report had Arizona State’s Rachaad White in our first 2022 Bucs 7-Spherical Mock Draft and BYU’s Tyler Allegier in the latest Mock Draft. Don’t suppose that operating backs aren’t vital to Arians and the Bucs. Final yr’s group of backs carried the ball 337 instances for 1,496 yards and scored 14 dashing TDs. Then the operating backs contributed 110 catches for 698 yards and 6 TDs within the passing recreation. And remember the fact that the backs scored 4 of the Bucs’ seven touchdowns within the two playoff video games. It is going to be attention-grabbing to see which operating backs the Bucs land in 2022.
Jon Ledyard: Load Up On Expertise At WR
Few offenses within the NFL rely extra on having premier expertise at quarterback and broad receiver than the Bucs. So, should you’re asking me the workforce’s prime non-quarterback offseason want, it’s simply bettering their expertise at wideout. Step one is re-signing Chris Godwin. So long as his well being checks out, you can not permit a participant that vital to the offense to depart. Godwin is a crucial a part of Tampa Bay’s passing assault. In the event that they wish to entice one other top-tier quarterback, they should preserve him round.
The subsequent step is being lively for high quality, reasonably priced choices in free company. If Tampa Bay seems like being aggressive, see if the Steelers’ JuJu Smith-Schuster will come to city for a one-year prove-it deal. He’s a terrific match for the offense, however would wish to see a prime quarterback in Tampa Bay earlier than signing. If not Smith-Schuster, maybe the Chiefs’ Byron Pringle or the Cowboys’ Cedrick Wilson can be upgrades on the No. 3 spot.
However I wouldn’t hand the third broad receiver spot to a lower-tier free agent signing. As an alternative, I might herald a prime draft decide to compete with them for the position. Or, even higher, share the position. Final season, Tyler Johnson, Jaelon Darden, Breshad Perriman and Scotty Miller didn’t show themselves worthy of being within the Bucs’ rotation. So G.M. Jason Licht ought to prioritize bringing in at the least 2 choices that could possibly be upgrades, even when the Bucs re-sign Godwin. In a powerful broad receiver draft, this technique appears very believable.
Kasey Hudson: Bucs Should Discover Gronkowski’s Alternative
Initially I might state that the Bucs largest want is at broad receiver. Higher but, I might argue that Tampa Bay wants to start out trusting Scotty Miller and do no matter it takes to draft Christian Watson. However the Bucs largest want is at tight finish. O.J Howard’s future is elsewhere, Rob Gronkowski might retire and Cam Brate has been declining for years.
And not using a dependable tight finish within the Bucs offense, there’s a lack of momentum within the run recreation and one much less goal within the passing recreation. Tight ends are important targets within the pink zone and on third downs. Whereas Gronk is among the finest within the league, there have been apparent struggles when he was not current in a recreation. Brate has been okay and had clutch moments, however suffered too many dropped passes this season. Plus, he’s not a terrific blocking tight finish.
Choosing up a top quality tight finish helps out each place on the offense. It alleviates stress within the run recreation, supplies an enormous goal within the center and within the pink zone and helps open up house for the workforce’s star broad receivers. Even when Gronk stays a Buccaneer, Tampa Bay nonetheless wants a pro-style tight finish for the subsequent few years. Sadly, I don’t suppose that participant is within the draft. So fingers crossed for a gem in free company.
J.C. Allen: Bucs Ought to Prioritize OL This Offseason
I are inclined to agree with Jon that broad receiver is an even bigger want than as soon as thought. And Kasey and Scott make nice factors as effectively. Although there may be expertise on the receiver place, particularly if Godwin is again within the fold. Whereas I do suppose operating again is a necessity, they’re a dime-a-dozen and the bottom recreation will not be featured closely on this offense. As for tight finish, Brate isn’t the man he was earlier in his profession. However he’s nonetheless a participant most groups in a decent end-needy NFL would like to have as a prime choice.
For me although, if a quarterback is in place, the largest query is who’s going to snap and block for him. There’s a very actual likelihood heart Ryan Jensen and/or guard Alex Cappa are poached in free company this offseason. Certain, the Bucs nonetheless have three excellent linemen, however is Robert Hainsey going to be able to take over at heart with out a lot expertise? Are you able to belief Aaron Stinnie over a 17-game season? Plus, Stinnie can also be a free agent.
If the reply is not any to both of these questions, you now have two large holes to fill on the offensive line. Whereas basic supervisor Jason Licht has achieved effectively figuring out offensive linemen within the draft, it’s onerous to solely financial institution on that course of. Will he have the picks to handle the place if he makes use of them to accumulate a quarterback. There aren’t many free agent choices at guard or heart on the extent of Cappa and Jensen. And whereas these positions are often checked out as, “simply plug somebody in there”, it is a system and offense that likes to let performs develop and take pictures down the sphere. If Cappa and Jensen go away, and for that matter Stinnie, the Bucs might discover themselves scrambling to place a patchwork inside line collectively.
Matt Matera: The Bucs Don’t Simply Want A WR, They Want At Least 2
Let’s face the info. In at this time’s NFL you want a dynamic and profitable offense if you wish to win the Tremendous Bowl. It’s an offensive pushed league with guidelines formed to encourage extra scoring. Now add in that you’ve an offensive head coach in Bruce Arians that likes to go vertical with the ball and the emphasis to discover a receiver is doubled. Not solely do the Bucs have to discover a broad receiver this offseason, they should discover two.
Above all else, the significance of re-signing Chris Godwin is why receiver is the reply. Godwin is instrumental within the offense for Tampa Bay, he’s the catalyst for a lot of issues that they do. He recorded 98 catches for 1,103 yards and 5 touchdowns in 14 video games, however it’s the run that he was on earlier than tearing his ACL that basically stands out. In his final 3 video games Godwin had 15 receptions for 143 yards and a landing, 10 receptions for 105 yards after which 6 catches for 49 yards in two quarters. These are online game numbers. The Bucs should have Godwin again.
It’s a two-fold query right here as a result of together with hopefully re-signing Godwin, Tampa Bay additionally wants a quantity 3 receiver. The gamers presently on the roster embrace Tyler Johnson, Jaelon Darden, Scotty Miller and Cyril Grayson Jr. I’m to see what Grayson can do in coaching camp this yr after a very good run in the direction of the top of the season, it looks like the quantity 3 wideout will not be on the roster in the intervening time. It’s too early to throw the e-book out on Darden after his rookie yr, however Johnson and Miller don’t look to be the highest choice.. The Bucs ought to discover their slot in both the draft or free company.