Buccaneers: More important to re-sign – Shaquil Barrett or Chris Godwin?

TAMPA, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 07: Shaquil Barrett, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
TAMPA, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 07: Shaquil Barrett, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /

A look at Chris Godwin’s time with the Buccaneers

Chris Godwin was drafted in the third round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Buccaneers, and has been a very good receiver for the team. He had a modest first two seasons, sitting behind Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson.

In these first two seasons, Godwin had 93 receptions for a total of 1,367 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. It wasn’t until his third year where he really broke out onto the scene. In 2019 alone, Godwin had 86 receptions for 1,333 yards and 9 touchdowns. He was selected to the Pro Bowl and he cemented himself as Tampa’s number two receiver.

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Godwin didn’t quite have the same year in 2020 as he did in 2019 but when it was crunch time, he continuously delivered. A few things contributed to his lack of production this season. For one, there was more receiver talent, which means the ball will be spread around more, and two, he missed four games due to injury. Even with these setbacks, he still had 840 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns and was the Buccaneers’ second-leading receiver, trailing only Mike Evans.

When he was drafted by the Buccaneers, Godwin signed a four year contract worth $3.28 million. He has turned out to be worth every penny thus far, but will this continue to be the trend? If the Bucs allow him to test the free agency market there are going to be some big suitors willing to pay Godwin a lot of money.

Godwin is one of the top number two receivers in the NFL, and with a lot of teams in need of quality receivers, don’t be surprised to see Godwin getting offers to become a team’s number one option.

Being a team’s top receiver means a healthy paycheck. Look for Godwin to get another four year deal, but instead of $3.28 million, expect it to be upwards of $15-16 million at the minimum. While Chris Godwin deserves this type of money, and even if he wants to stay with the team, there is a cap space to keep in mind.

Even though the Buccaneers would love nothing more than to re-sign Godwin and keep him happy, they also know that they are deep at the receiver position. Along with Mike Evans, the Bucs also have Scotty Miller and Tyler Johnson who both saw significant playing time this year.

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Antonio Brown’s one year contract is also expiring but the Bucs will be able to sign him to a lot smaller of a contract since he will only play for Tom Brady. As long as Brown stays healthy and out of trouble, he has the potential to be a great combo with Mike Evans if Godwin does not return.

It seems like Chris Godwin wants to stay on the team but he may also want to prove that he can be a team’s top receiver, and until Mike Evans leaves Tampa, he won’t have that chance in Tampa.