Grading the Buccaneers first 8 moves of free agency

How did the Buccaneers do on the first day of free agency this year?
New Orleans Saints v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
New Orleans Saints v Tampa Bay Buccaneers / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages
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Monday was the unofficial start of the offseason, as the legal tampering period began and started the clock on NFL Free Agency.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers mostly sat things out, opting to instead take care of in-house items before looking at the open market. Most teams went on a free agent frenzy, with agreements flying around all afternoon. Meanwhile, Jason Licht and the Bucs have been hard at work for the last two weeks trying to hammer out deals with key free agents, a task which was impressively completed before the legal tampering period even began.

With one day of unofficial free agency in the books -- deals can't be made final until Wednesday -- let's look at what the Bucs did and hand out some grades.

Grading the Buccaneers first big moves of 2024 free agency

Franchise tagged Antoine Winfield Jr.

The jury is still out on this, although the mere fact that the Bucs are attempting to extend the window for negotiating with Antoine Winfield Jr. is a positive sign.

It seems like a matter of how much he'll get paid rather than whether a deal will get done before the deadline passes. Tampa Bay has until July 15th to work out a deal with its All-Pro safety, and the tag suggests there's no way he plays the season on anything other than a long-term deal.

Winfield was not only the best defensive player for the Bucs but arguably the team's most valuable player. He saved the season in Week 18 with yet another goal line punch fumble, something he made a habit of doing throughout the year. He posted career highs in just about every meaningful category and firmly established himself as the heart and soul of the defense.

There's almost no chance he gets away, and even a depressed safety market won't prevent him from getting paid what he's owed and resetting the value of his position.

Grade: TBD