Heading into the 2024 offseason, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers must make important moves on the roster if they want to compete next season, especially on the defensive side of the ball.
Let’s see some free agents that would add great value to the Bucs’ roster.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Free Agent Targets
Patrick Queen, ILB
The Baltimore Ravens will likely prioritize retaining defensive tackle Justin Madubuike and will probably use their franchise tag on him, which leaves linebacker Patrick Queen free to test free agency.
This signing would make sense for Tampa Bay: linebacker Devin White requested a trade before the season even started, and, although he later regretted this decision in a social media post, it’s unlikely the Bucs will re-sign him after that. On top of that, he had the worst season of his career, posting career-worst numbers in tackles (83) and sacks (2.5), and was relegated to the bench in both of Tampa Bay’s postseason games.
The only downside to this signing would be its cost. Queen is still on his rookie contract, and he’ll be looking for a big salary increase given his great performances on the field for the past four seasons. However, per overthecap.com, the Buccaneers have an estimated $36.8 million in cap space to work with, and they will have to spend the big bucks if they want to make a push for the playoffs next year.
Kendall Fuller, CB
Washington Commanders cornerback Kendall Fuller was among the few bright spots in a sluggish Commanders secondary this year. The Commanders have a league-high estimated $73.6 million in cap space per overthecap.com, but judging off the mediocre performance the Commanders had this past season, it would make sense for Fuller to want out and for the team to move on from him and search for younger players to rebuild the roster with.
Fuller is an eight-year veteran with the Commanders and the Kansas City Chiefs and played a pivotal role in the Chiefs’ 2020 Super Bowl-winning secondary. On top of that, the Buccaneers don’t have much depth in the cornerback position. They do have a great cornerback in Jamel Dean, and pairing him up with Fuller would make one of the league’s best cornerback duos.
This signing would mean that Carlton Davis III would be relegated to the bench, but Fuller would most certainly be an upgrade over him for the Tampa Bay secondary. Besides, it won’t hurt to add more depth to the position.
Michael Pittman Jr., WR
In a previous article, it was mentioned that the Bucs should let wide receiver Mike Evans go in free agency and explained why this move would be the smartest option for both parties. Truth be told, if Evans leaves, he’ll leave behind a big hole in Tampa Bay’s receiving corps that will need to be filled. Sure, some guys like Chris Godwin and Trey Palmer could very well assume Evans’ role in the Buccaneer offense, but it’s unlikely they will ever play to the level Evans did during his prime.
Assuming the Buccos let Evans walk this offseason, wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. emerges as an excellent candidate to replace him. He has already said that he wants to explore other options, and at the age of 26, he’s got a good 10 years of football left in him, and the Buccaneers have the money to pay for him.
As was mentioned before, the Bucs must make big moves this offseason to compete for a playoff spot next season. They have the money to spend and a very talented roster that would greatly benefit from any of the additions listed above. If they make a big move or two, we could be in for a very solid 2024 campaign from the Tampa Bay team. We’ll have to wait and see.
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