Budget-Friendly Free Agents for the Buccaneers

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are facing a challenging offseason after going all in last season which eventually lead to a wild card exit. With $55 million over the cap, the team will have limited resources to restock its roster during free agency. This means they will have to be creative and strategic in how they address their needs.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Problems

One key area of concern is the quarterback position. While Kyle Trask is under contract, he lacks experience as a starter in the NFL. The Bucs will need to consider their options carefully to ensure they have a reliable option under center.

The defense is also a concern, as the team is set to lose several key players to free agency. The secondary in particular could take a hit, with Jamel Dean, Sean Murphy-Bunting, Mike Edwards, Logan Ryan, and Keanu Neal all on expiring contracts. The Bucs will need to prioritize rebuilding this unit if they want to stay competitive next season.

With all of the issues that the Bucs are facing this offseason, it is understandable why FanDuel FL sportsbook listed them as +7500 to win the Super Bowl LVIII – the fourth lowest-ranked NFL team today.

To address their roster holes, the Bucs will be looking for bargain players in free agency. This could include aging veterans, reclamation projects, and borderline starters who are willing to take a smaller paycheck.

Free Agent No. 1 – Jacoby Brissett

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may have found their solution at the quarterback position with the potential signing of Jacoby Brissett. If targeting Derek Carr does not lead to anything, the Bucs may settle with Brissett.

After impressing as a reserve for the Cleveland Browns in 2022, Brissett could be a valuable addition to the Bucs’ roster. Despite only making $4.65 million, Brissett outperformed Deshaun Watson in key statistics such as completion percentage, yards per attempt, sack percentage, passer rating, and QBR. Brissett’s ability to take care of the football is also highly valued by new offensive coordinator Dave Canales.

While the Bucs will likely give Kyle Trask a chance to start, Brissett would provide a reliable option if needed. Among active quarterbacks, Brissett has the second-best interception rate, only trailing Aaron Rodgers.

Although Brissett may be considered a short-term solution, he could prove to be a valuable asset for the Bucs. With limited cap flexibility, the team will need to make smart and efficient moves during the offseason, and signing Brissett would be a wise choice.

Free Agent No. 2 – Kyle Fuller

The Buccaneers may have found a potential diamond in the rough with the opportunity to sign Kyle Fuller. Once considered a rising star on defense, Fuller’s career has taken a hit since leaving the Chicago Bears in 2020.

However, Fuller’s past accomplishments speak for themselves, as he posted a league-high seven interceptions and 21 pass breakups in 2018, earning him a first-team All Pro nod. Despite being benched by the Denver Broncos in 2021 and suffering a major knee injury while playing for the Baltimore Ravens in 2022, Fuller’s potential for resurgence should not be overlooked.

At 31 years old and coming off a significant injury, Fuller is not likely to have a highly competitive market. With a salary of only $2.5 million in 2022, he could potentially be signed for the veteran minimum.

The Bucs will likely bring in several veterans to compete for playing time, but Fuller’s resume and potential make him a strong candidate for the team. 

Free Agent No. 3 – Justin Evans

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may look to reunite with a familiar face in the secondary by targeting safety Justin Evans. The Bucs selected Evans in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft, but his time in Tampa was derailed by an ankle injury that nearly ended his career.

After a long road to recovery, Evans made a comeback with the New Orleans Saints in 2022, playing primarily at free safety. Though he was largely a rotational and spot starter, he played in 15 games, the most in his NFL career.

Evans made just $1.03 million in 2022, making him an affordable option for the Bucs. A reunion with Tampa Bay would give Evans a chance to revitalize his career, while also giving the Bucs a chance to rectify a draft misstep.