Historically speaking, being a Floridian in January means football season is over. College football has had their bowl games, and the Bucs… well, college football has had their bowl games.
Ah, but I kid the Bucs. The Bucs of this season have much in common with the Bucs of last season… mostly because they didn’t play to their level of win-loss record. Last year’s Bucs weren’t as bad as 5-11, and this year’s version surely wasn’t as good as 11-5. Last year the ball bounced the wrong way and they lost a lot of close games. This year the ball bounced the right way and they won a LOT of close games (say, eleven of them).
My top three Buc issues for the off-season:
1. The salary cap – The Bruce Allen Bucs have a yearly date with their calculators, and this off-season will be no different. Given that most of their salary dollars are tied up on defense, the question is, who on the NFL’s top rated defense will be cut or renegotiated?
2. The draft – What needs will be addressed? The secondary? WR?
3. QB – Chris Simms becomes a restricted free agent. Griese has a bonus coming due. Simms + Griese + Rattay + that other guy whose name I can’t remember = four guys who’ve started games in the NFL, and I’m not sure Gruden trusts any of them.
This started off as a top five, but I grow weary of this topic. Help me Tampa Bay Lightning, you’re my only hope.