Out of fifteen pending free agents from the Buccaneers’ 2016 roster, I see the Bucs keeping seven and losing eight. The biggest names on this list – as far as many Bucs fans are concerned – are Vincent Jackson, Mike Glennon, and William Gholston, none of which appear to be returning to the team.
The seven free agents that appear poised for a new deal with the team will collectively cost less than someone like Mike Evans, Eric Berry, or Dontari Poe would for one season, so this is a prime example of how rosters are built. It’s not all about flash and glamour, marquee names, and headlines.
This is about the role players, the grinders, and the unsung heroes. The players like Shep and Robinson who do whatever is asked and helped make the Bucs’ punt team one of the best in football. It’s about Hawley being the type of person that would take on whatever role the team needs him to because he’s a selfless guy and puts team success over personal accolades.
Those are the players that create championship rosters. You need your stars at the top. Your Winstons, your Evans, your Alexanders, Davids, and McCoys, but out of the 53-men in those uniforms, you can’t have 53 stars. It doesn’t work.
We saw the foundation laid, the culture changed, and the start of something special in the Koetter-Licht era in 2016. Now, it’s time to bring back those who helped that happen before filling in holes with outsiders and inviting young men to begin their career as the new wave of Bucs.