Mar 20, 2023 - Sports

Tampa Bay Buccaneers reload in offseason

Lavonte David #54 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers yells on the field with a sign that says "End Racism" behind him.

Lavonte is back! Photo: Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

The Bucs have been surprisingly active this offseason overhauling a roster that no longer features Tom Brady.

Why it matters: Tampa Bay needs to reload to compete in the NFC South.

Reality check: They don't have much salary cap flexibility due to Brady's massive contract still on the books.

Let's catch up on how free agency has shaped up:

Quarterback: Bucs GM Jason Licht believes Baker Mayfield is the short-term future.

  • Mayfield bombed out with Carolina last year. After he was released mid-season, he was picked up by the quarterback-needy Rams.
  • Mayfield signed a one-year deal so he'll have a year to compete with last year's backup Kyle Trask.

Re-signing fan favorites: The Bucs did right by fan favorite linebacker Lavonte David. The 33-year-old returns on a one-year contract.

Defense: Over the weekend, the Bucs agreed to a one-year deal to pick up former Rams defensive tackle Greg Gaines, a source told ESPN.

Who's gone: Leonard Fournette, Cameron Brate and Donovan Smith were released and guard Shaq Mason was traded to the Texans. Safety Mike Edwards is reportedly headed to the Kansas City Chiefs.

What's next: Will Licht make a move to bring in former Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott? The Bucs' current running backs coach Skip Peete coached Elliott in Dallas.

  • Yes, but: The Bucs still need to cut salary, so bringing in a star like Elliott may not be in the cards.
avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Tampa Bay.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Tampa Bay stories

Tampa Baypostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Tampa Bay.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more