Buccaneers need to learn from biggest roster mistake

Jason Licht, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Licht, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

The Buccaneers have done almost everything right over the past few years but they can be better on the roster side of things.

Look, the Buccaneers haven’t made a lot of mistakes over the past few years en route to winning a Super Bowl and being a few plays away from making it to the NFC Championship, but let’s not pretend the team is perfect either.

The Bucs, like every other team in the league, make mistakes. They just tend to make fewer mistakes than the other teams.

However, Tampa still needs to find a way to minimize these mistakes if they want the next year to go well. This should start with the way the roster is handled.

Of the limited mistakes over the past few years, the way the team has handled parts of the roster over the last year stands out. This might seem strange for a team that has done very well in free agency and in the draft during the Brady era, but we can’t overlook the fact that the management of this area could be better.

Antonio Brown, Ronald Jones, and most of the class of 2021were on the team last year because of the players they “could be.” They weren’t on the team (other than Brown to some degree) because of who they were at the time.

Jones lost his job to Leonard Fournette early and wasn’t traded due to “potential,” Brown was a ticking time bomb that the coaching staff overlooked as a potential threat, and that draft class is showing no signs of helping the team out more in 2022.

The sole focus for the team this year is winning. No one should be on the roster that can’t contribute now outside of a handful of developmental future options.

If a vet can’t play, don’t keep him. Let the young player get his reps and develop (as we saw the opposite with Jones taking reps from Vaughn down the stretch. Look where that got us.)

It’s a tough pill to swallow, but a lack of this forethought is what kept the team from making it further last season. The Buccaneers have to be better about keeping the best talent on the roster to win in the short term if Brady is the quarterback, and it looks like they have the pieces in place to do that this year.

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