The free agency period is pretty much done. There are still some big names out there Eric Berry, Justin Houston and Jamie Collins that will be signed somewhere but you can be sure that none of them will be coming to Tampa.
The free agency period is an opportunity for you to improve your football team. The Bucs failed miserably due to their salary cap situation. The Bucs are officially in salary cap hell and there is very little they can do about it. When punter Bradley Pinion signs the largest contract free agent contract that is not a good sign.
The question that needs to be asked is are the Bucs any better losing the players that they lost in free agency verses the players they brought in? That answer is a resounding no.
They essentially swapped out linebackers Kwon Alexander for Deone Bucannon. The Bucs lost big time on that deal. Alexander will have a monster season in San Francisco and will quickly become a leader in that locker room.
Bucannon undersized for a linebacker at 6-1 208 will play more in coverage than against the run. As the roster stands today Lavonte David, Deone Bucannon and Kevin Minter/Kendall Beckwith would be the starting linebackers. Not exactly the second coming of Jack lambert, Jack Ham and Andy Russell.
How about wide receiver? Adam Humphries for Breshad Perriman. Another loss for the Bucs. Humphries is coming off the best season in his career catching 71 passes and Perriman is coming off a season in which he had just 16 catches.
The Bucs have signed a lot of bodies this off-season but none that are going to be real difference makers in 2019. Oh yes they have the potential to be game changers like Breshad Perriman who has blazing speed, but if you can’t stay healthy which has been a big issue with Perriman, it’s not going to matter.
Another example of not getting any better is the massive amount of money paid to the starters on the offensive line. This offensive line stunk last year and yet Donavan Smith, Ali Marpet, Ryan Jensen and Demer Dotson will make between 35 and 40 million dollars this season.
The Bucs offensive line as a group makes just north of $43 million dollars a year, and is ranked 28th out of 32 offensive lines in the NFL.
With all that money being paid out for the offensive line, this unit is still one of the areas that needs a massive overhaul.
The linebackers and the defensive backs are the two areas on this football team that need the most improving. Losing Kwon Alexander makes you weaker not better. To win more games, the Bucs need better football players. They have added bodies, not better football players.
Offensive line continues to be a need on the offensive side of the ball. If this unit does not improve it’s run blocking, the Bucs running game will continue to flounder and be at the bottom of the league.
The Bucs are counting on their position coaches at all levels to be huge difference makers and be able to raise the level of play so that the Bucs can be a 10 or 11 win team this season.
Remember, Bruce Arians said that he thinks there is enough talent on this team to win right now. But that was before the loss of Alexander and Humphries.
Thats delusional, unless every position coach is as good of a coach as Bill Belichick.
With the NFL draft fast approaching the focus needs to be defense, defense and more defense. That is what lost the majority of the games for the Bucs last season and the bucs need to address this sooner rather than later.