Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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Sterling Shepard
Sterling Shepard Links up with Tampa
Thu, Jun 6, 2024, 10:35 AM
Shepard agreed to a one-year contract with the Buccaneers on Thursday, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.
Analysis: Shepard spent the past eight years with the Giants, playing 90 of a possible 131 regular-season games. He's had a hard time staying healthy for years now, but until last season he consistently drew targets whenever available. After catching just 10 passes in 15 games last season, the 31-year-old will compete for a depth role with Tampa Bay.
Cody Thompson
Cody Thompson Finds work in Tampa Bay
Wed, Jun 5, 2024, 7:31 PM
Thompson signed with the Bucs on Wednesday, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Analysis: With Deven Thompkins (hamstring) sent to injured reserve recently, Thompson gives the Bucs another veteran wideout body to bring to camp. In 12 career games with the Seahawks from 2021-23, Thompson caught one pass for 10 yards.
Deven Thompkins
Deven Thompkins Placed on injured reserve
Tue, Jun 4, 2024, 4:51 PM
Thompkins (hamstring) reverted to IR on Tuesday, Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2 Houston reports.
Analysis: Thompkins will now likely miss the 2024 campaign with his shift to injured reserve. However, if he can reach an injury settlement with the Buccaneers, he'd be free to find an opportunity elsewhere once he can prove himself healthy.
Trey Palmer
Trey Palmer Gets new competition from draft
Wed, May 1, 2024, 1:48 PM
Palmer and rookie third-round pick Jalen McMillan are the top candidates for Tampa Bay's No. 3 receiver job, Joshua Queipo of Pewter Report reports.
Analysis: Palmer, a 2023 sixth-round pick, held the role for nearly all of his rookie season, though he was perhaps miscast in the slot. New offensive coordinator Liam Coen said he wants to put Chris Godwin back in the slot as his primary alignment, which means the team's No. 3 receiver this upcoming season likely will play a majority of snaps outside. While that's perhaps good news for Palmer given his 4.33 wheels, McMillan has decent speed in his own right (4.47) and is slightly taller and heavier (6-1, 197, compared to Palmer's 6-0, 192). There's also the matter of Palmer being a much later draft pick and then struggling with his opportunities as a rookie; he caught just 57.4 percent of his 68 targets and averaged 9.9 yards per catch, which works out to a RB-like 5.7 YPT.
John Wolford
John Wolford Back with Tampa Bay
Fri, Mar 15, 2024, 4:10 PM
Tampa Bay signed Wolford (illness) to a one-year deal Friday, Buccaneers' general manager Jason Licht reports.
Analysis: After spending the end of last season on the Buccaneers' practice squad, Wolford has agreed to return to Tampa Bay in 2024. The 28-year-old quarterback has appeared in seven games (four starts) throughout his three-year NFL career, completing 61 of his 104 passes for 626 yards, one touchdown and five interceptions. It seems as if Wolford is past the illness he was dealing with towards the end of last year, and he'll likely have the opportunity to compete for Tampa Bay's backup quarterback role with Kyle Trask this offseason.
Chase Edmonds
Chase Edmonds Re-ups with Buccaneers
Thu, Mar 14, 2024, 12:22 PM
Tampa Bay re-signed Edmonds on Wednesday.
Analysis: Edmonds returns to a Buccaneers team that trusted him with the No. 2 role behind lead back Rachaad White last season. Across 13 regular-season appearances in 2023, Edmonds rushed 49 times for 176 yards and secured 14 of 17 catches for 81 yards, all without a single touchdown. He could be primed for a similar role in 2024, though Sean Tucker will be a candidate to carve out a larger workload Year 2, and Tampa Bay could still add to the backfield in free agency or April's draft.
Trey Palmer
Trey Palmer Remaining in No. 3 role
Tue, Mar 12, 2024, 11:58 AM
Palmer looks slated to run it back as the No. 3 wide receiver for Tampa Bay with Mike Evans having re-signed on a two-year deal and quarterback Baker Mayfield set to return via a three-year, $100 million contract, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN reports.
Analysis: Palmer will get a chance to build on a solid rookie season in which he logged a 39-385-3 line across 17 regular-season games, with another year to build offseason chemistry with Mayfield. The presence of two core wideouts in Evans and Chris Godwin will allow Palmer to focus on contributing as a complementary player, a role that could make better use of his field-stretching abilities than if the 2023 sixth-round pick had been asked to truly step up as a No. 2 receiver, had Evans been allowed to walk.
Chris Godwin
Chris Godwin Bucs running it back on offense
Tue, Mar 12, 2024, 11:48 AM
Godwin will benefit from offensive stability with Tampa Bay slated to re-sign quarterback Baker Mayfield to a three-year, $100 million contract and Mike Evans having returned via a two-year, $52 million contract, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: Godwin at one point looked like he'd have to adapt to another change under center while potentially also having to line up with Evans elsewhere for the first time in his career, but the Buccaneers' early offseason moves instead have secured impressive offensive stability. The retention of both Mayfield and Evans should provide fantasy managers real confidence that Godwin's involvement on offense will remain effective and core to Tampa Bay's game plan, especially with new offensive coordinator Liam Coen having stated that he envisions the 28-year-old wideout moving back to the slot. Godwin has put together three consecutive 1,000-yard receiving campaigns, and it's possible the passing game could take a real step forward in 2024 with Mayfield more comfortable in Year 2.
Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield Staying with Tampa Bay
Sun, Mar 10, 2024, 4:20 PM
Mayfield agreed to terms on a three-year, $100 million deal with the Buccaneers on Sunday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
Analysis: Mayfield will remain with Tampa Bay as its presumptive starting quarterback for at least the next two years. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the 28-year-old's new deal includes $50 million guaranteed with $30 million of which set to be paid in 2024 and $20 million set to be paid in 2025. This contract also includes $5 million per year in incentives, increasing its max value to $115 million. Mayfield originally signed with the squad in May 2023 on a flier one-year deal worth $8.5 million. He went on to notch career highs in both passing yards (4,044) and passing touchdowns (28) while tossing just 10 interceptions across 17 regular-season starts, and he led the team to a NFC South title and an appearance in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs. Star wideout Mike Evans also re-signed on a two-year, $52 million contract with Tampa Bay this offseason while standout slot receiver Chris Godwin also still has two years remaining on his current contract with the team. The retention of these two core receivers should provide Mayfield with a strong base of receiving talent heading into the 2024 campaign.
Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield Scheduled to test free agency
Tue, Mar 5, 2024, 4:03 PM
Mayfield is on track to become an unrestricted free agent March 13, with the Buccaneers having placed the franchise tag on Antoine Winfield on Tuesday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Analysis: Mayfield and Tampa Bay still have time to negotiate on an extension before free agency, but with Winfield having received the franchise tag and Mike Evans having been re-signed on a two-year, $52 million contract, the veteran quarterback is now the team's biggest looming question. The 2018 No. 1 overall pick is coming off a solid 2023 campaign in which he threw for a career-high 4,044 yards with a solid 28:10 TD, assisting the Buccaneers in securing a third-straight NFC South title plus an NFC Divisional Round cameo. It's been reported that Mayfield desires to remain in Tampa Bay, so he could be willing to agree to a team-friendly contract, but there are enough questions at quarterback around the NFL that the soon-to-be 29-year-old should be legitimately pursued by other teams if allowed to hit the open market.
Deven Thompkins
Deven Thompkins Inks new deal
Tue, Mar 5, 2024, 3:22 PM
Thompkins re-signed with the Buccaneers on a one-year deal Tuesday.
Analysis: Thompkins joined the Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent out of Utah and initially started the season on the team's practice squad. However, the 24-year-old ultimately was signed to the active roster and played in all 17 regular-season games and both of their postseason contests.
Mike Evans
Mike Evans Re-signs with Bucs
Mon, Mar 4, 2024, 8:26 AM
Evans and the Buccaneers reached agreement Monday morning on a two-year, $52 million contract that includes $35 million guaranteed, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Analysis: Reports a few days earlier suggested Evans would hit free agency, but he ended up re-signing with the Buccaneers instead and will continue playing for the team that drafted him seventh overall in 2014. He'll turn 31 in August, having topped 1,000 yards in a record-setting 10 straight seasons to open his career, including 2023 when he had his most catches (79), yards (1,255) and targets (136) since 2018 while tying for the league lead in receiving touchdowns (13). The Buccaneers can now focus on re-signing their other prominent free agents, including QB Baker Mayfield, S Antoine Winfield and LB Lavonte David.
Mike Evans
Mike Evans To test free agency
Fri, Mar 1, 2024, 7:05 PM
Evans plans to hit free agency for the first time in his career, Dianna Russini of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: While Evans and the Buccaneers remain in contract discussions, the veteran pass catcher wants to explore his options. Thus, it does not mean his time in Tampa Bay is over, but rather, that he plans on hearing from all teams before making a decision. The 30-year-old has been with the team for all 10 years of his NFL seasons and is coming off a campaign where he recorded 1,255 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns.
Mike Evans
Mike Evans Teams seem committed to return
Wed, Feb 28, 2024, 10:33 PM
The Buccaneers appear committed to re-signing Evans before the start of free agency, even if there is a financial strain on the team's cap situation, Jenna Laine of ESPN.com reports. "He's an unprecedented player. We want him to be a Buc for life. We're working towards that," general manager Jason Licht said Tuesday at the NFL Combine.
Analysis: Licht admitted the team would probably have to "strain a little bit" to reach a deal palatable to Evans, who's coming off his 10th consecutive 1,000-yard season. The perennial Pro Bowler also recorded 13 touchdowns in 2023 -- tying for the league lead. "Mike did a heck of a job and he came to work every day," coach Todd Bowles said. "He has been very consistent, very dynamic, yet he's very humble off the field. He's one of my favorite players. I have a lot of respect for Mike and everything he does..."
Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield Contract talks expected to continue
Fri, Feb 23, 2024, 10:25 AM
Buccaneers' GM Jason Licht is expected to meet with Mayfield's agent, Tom Mills, during the NFL scouting combine next week, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Analysis: Stroud notes that while no deal for the QB to remain with Tampa Bay is imminent, the team and Mayfield have had some preliminary talks about a potential new contract. In his first season with the Bucs, Mayfield recorded a career-high 4,044 passing yards to go along with a 28:10 TD ratio en route to leading the franchise to a third straight NFC South title. The report adds that Mayfield -- who the Browns made the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft -- would prefer to stay put after having split the 2022 campaign with the Panthers and Rams -- but if the veteran signal-caller hits the free agent market next month, the Buccaneers could have some competition for the 28-year-old's services.
Russell Gage
Russell Gage May be released soon
Wed, Feb 21, 2024, 9:21 AM
The Buccaneers may release Gage (knee) before he's due a $1.5 million roster bonus March 1, Dan Pompei of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Gage also has a non-guaranteed $8.5 million base salary for the third and final year of his contract, though the use of void years means the Buccaneers will free up only $6.5 million in 2024 cap space if he's released. The 28-year-old suffered a torn patellar tendon in August, putting his NFL future in jeopardy. Gage might consider renegotiating his contract to stay in Tampa Bay and continue his rehab with the Buccaneers.
Mike Evans
Mike Evans Free agency looking likelier
Mon, Feb 19, 2024, 9:30 AM
The Buccaneers are not expected to re-sign Evans by Monday's 'soft' deadline, which will force the team to take on $7.4 million in dead cap space, Jordan Schultz of BleacherReport.com reports.
Analysis: Evans and Tampa Bay will continue contract negotiations in the meantime, but as things stand, the passing of Monday's deadline makes it look more realistic that the 30-year-old wideout ends up on the free agent market. The Buccaneers also have the option of placing the franchise tag on Evans, though that would cost the team a whopping $28.4 million for 2024, and rule out other tag options like Baker Mayfield and Antoine Winfield. Evans has put together 10 straight seasons with over 1,000 receiving yards and been instrumental to each iteration of Tampa Bay's offense to burgeon forth in that stretch, so whether he receives his next contract from the Buccaneers or a team on the open market, expect his compensation to be remunerative.
Mike Evans
Mike Evans Likely to stay in Tampa?
Wed, Feb 7, 2024, 12:11 PM
New Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen made it clear Tuesday that he's hopeful the team will re-sign Evans, an impending free agent, Greg Auman of Fox Sports reports.
Analysis: Evans and QB Baker Mayfield have expiring contracts, and WR Chris Godwin is scheduled for $20 million in non-guaranteed compensation for the final year of his deal in 2024. The possibility of significant change can't be ignored, but Coen's opening press conference left little doubt that part of his motivation for taking the Tampa Bay job was an expectation the gang would be kept together. The former Rams and Kentucky offensive coordinator talked about how much easier it is to design an offense with a downfield, perimeter threat like Evans, also mentioning that he plans to move Godwin back to the slot as his primary alignment. A franchise tag for Evans would cost $28.4 million -- 120 percent of his 2023 cap charge -- while Mayfield's tag number likely would be around $35 million. The Bucs have a third candidate for the tag in 25-year-old safety Antoine Winfield, whose salary would be about $17 million. Re-signing Evans first would help the team's short-term cap flexibility, allowing the Bucs to shift much of his $12.2 million cap hit from void years into future seasons (but only if he signs a new deal before Feb. 19 when his current contract voids).
Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield Looking likely to stay in Tampa
Tue, Feb 6, 2024, 1:24 PM
New Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen said Tuesday that Mayfield is one of the reasons he chose the job in Tampa Bay, Greg Auman of Fox Sports reports.
Analysis: Coen said his confidence in Mayfield re-signing is "higher than I probably need [it] to be" but also clarified that it's "probably more 'want' than 'know'." It sounds like the two are on the same page, at least to some extent, as Mayfield said Friday that he expected contract talks to pick up once the Bucs finalized a deal with Coen, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports. The former Rams offensive coordinator worked with Mayfield at the end of the 2022 season in Los Angeles, before returning to the college ranks in 2023 with Kentucky to resume calling plays. Coen will get his first shot as an NFL play-caller in 2024, and there's a good chance he'll be working with Mayfield -- a candidate for the franchise tag and/or a long-term contract this spring. WR Mike Evans is also scheduled for unrestricted free agency, with his future having a significant impact on Mayfield's fantasy value after the two connected 79 times for 1,255 yards and 13 TDs in 2023.
Chris Godwin
Chris Godwin Likely returning to slot
Tue, Feb 6, 2024, 12:46 PM
New Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen said Tuesday that he anticipates moving Godwin back inside to the slot, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Analysis: Godwin took 32 percent of his snaps from the slot in 2023, down from 60 percent the previous year and 53 percent in 2021. His volume didn't suffer too much (130 targets), but his catch rate plunged to 63.8 percent after four straight years above 71 percent, and he finished with his lowest per-game averages for receptions (4.9) and receiving yards (60.2) since 2018 -- which was also the last time his slot rate dipped below 49 percent. While perfectly capable on the perimeter, Godwin is probably at his best inside. The shift to more outside work last season apparently stemmed from the Bucs' belief that it might help keep him healthy, and while Godwin did in fact play every game for the first time since 2018, he's nonetheless expected to man the slot more often with the team shifting from Dave Canales to Coen as offensive coordinator. It sounds like a good thing for his fantasy value, especially given that Godwin also gets a lot of playing time in two-wideout formations, unlike many other slot guys.

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