Like a wave crashing on the beach at high tide, the new crew with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers seem hell-bent on washing away all signs of the Jon Gruden era.
Ok, I get that. But it’s time to stop fooling Bucs fans.
What the team is saying so far is this: We won’t win right away, we don’t expect to win right away, and you better get used to it. Oh, and by the way, we aren’t reducing ticket prices.
There’s no question that the team had a lot of aging veterans, particularly on the defensive side. But the decision to jettison Derrick Brooks smacks of “sending a message” and not making the team better. It’s not like the Bucs need the money – they are more than $60 million under the salary cap.
And anyone who thinks that Luke McCown or Brian Griese are an improvement over Jeff Garcia is either hopelessly optimistic or in the words of Hunter Thompson think George III is hiding in the jungles of South America.
It seems, however, that if a player is over the age of 30 that the Bucs new regime thinks they need to go. I’m willing to concede that some changes were inevitable. But we now have a team that may need a running back, definitely needs a quarterback, and someone to draw coverage away from Antonio Bryant. And making a trade for Kellen Winslow doesn’t count. Yes, he’s shown a lot of promise, but he’s also been shown to be a tremendous distraction off the field.
It’s unfair to say that the Bucs will be worse under Raheem Morris. But the off season moves so far make it look like the Bucs are a team in tremendous transition. They are rebuilding the franchise one piece at a time.