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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NFC South

O.J. Howard returns to practice

Fri, Jul 30th 10:02am EDT
By Lee Wehry

Buccaneers TE O.J. Howard is practicing on Friday for the first time since tearing his Achilles in October 2020. (Source: Greg Auman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Howard looked to be the primary TE option before suffering the Achilles injury early in the 2020 season. Recording 11 receptions for 146 yards and two TDs in September, he appeared on pace for a breakout in the Tom Brady-led offense. Can Howard return to form and prove himself worthy of the first-round pick the Bucs used on him in 2017? Only time will tell. For now, he should be on the fantasy radar as a streaming option with upside.

Category: Injury Updates

Ronald Jones is showing zero hesitation in hitting his holes, turning the corner on outside runs, and appears locked in during his contract year. (Source: Pewter Report)

Fantasy Impact: Fantasy managers tend to overlook just how effective Jones was rushing the ball in 2020. He was sixth in yards per carry and led the NFL in yards after contact per attempt. Even if you're concerned about Leonard Fournette and the addition of Giovani Bernard, all of those question marks are built into his current price. He's currently being drafted at RB30, yet the former Trojan finished last season as RB16. The addition of Bernard does not likely impact RoJo since he is not used in a pass-catching role and at this stage of Bernard's career, he's not a threat carrying the football. While fantasy managers are unlikely to forget Fournette's dominant playoff run, Jones was still a valuable fantasy asset last season. With his depressed ADP, fantasy managers should be looking to capitalize on RoJo as a guy who is capable of providing RB2 numbers with the upside for even more if Fournette gets hurt. The Buccaneers have one of the best defenses in the NFL and a powerful offensive line. The combination of these two is excellent news for any running back and fantasy football manager looking to invest in such a situation. The current state of affairs may appear muddy, but RoJo's role in this offense is clear and at his current price, fantasy managers shouldn't be shying away.

Joey Knight of the Tampa Bay Times is reporting that Tom Brady is working without a knee brace. (Source: Joey Knight on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ QB Tom Brady played the entirety of last season with a torn MCL in his left knee, according to a report in the Tampa Bay Times. Now, just months after winning his seventh Super Bowl and undergoing a ‘pretty serious’ surgery, Brady is practicing without a knee brace.

Category: Injury Updates

Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that Tampa Bay has placed WR Justin Watson on the PUP list. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Buccaneers’ WR Justin Watson is expected to miss about four months after undergoing a surgical procedure on his knee. Battling for playing time as the team's WR4 with Scotty Miller and Tyler Johnson was never going to be easy, now it'll be near impossible. After having just seven receptions last time Watson should be avoided in all formats.

Category: Injury Updates

Per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are placing starting S Jordan Whitehead on the Reserve/COVID-19 list to begin training camp. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Whitehead, 24-years old, will start camp on the Reserve/COVID-19 list for Tampa as he has presumably tested positive for COVID-19. In 2020, Whitehead had 74 tackles, two interceptions, two sacks and a forced fumble for the Bucs in the regular season. Following the Bucs' Super Bowl victory Whitehead also underwent labrum surgery which is something else to keep an eye on long term as Whitehead has turned into an important piece for the Tampa Bay secondary.

Category: Injury Updates

Buccaneers running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn does not have a guaranteed spot on the team's gameday roster heading into his second pro season. (Source: The Athletic)

Fantasy Impact: Vaughn is expected to open the year as Tampa Bay's No. 4 running back behind Ronald Jones, Leonard Fournette, and Giovani Bernard. Greg Auman of The Athletic notes that Vaughn "showed improvement both in his quickness and with his hands" but will have to "establish a role on special teams if he wants to dress as a fourth back on Sundays this fall." Considering the 24-year-old is blocked by three players on the roster, he's not worth stashing in redraft leagues. He ranks 82nd among running backs in the latest expert consensus draft rankings and 55th in dynasty.

Category: Rumors

Buccaneers offseason acquisition Giovani Bernard has made a positive impact on his new team. According to Greg Auman of The Athletic, "the 29-year-old came as advertised, impressively deciding to attend both voluntary OTAs and Tom Brady’s unofficial workouts as he tries to learn a new offense and new teammates." (Source: The Athletic)

Fantasy Impact: Bernard is on track to have a key role this upcoming season. While he'll open the year as the No. 3 running back, he's the best blocker and pass-catcher in Tampa Bay's backfield. He should handle the third-down role with ease and will allow Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette to catch their breath. Bernard ranks 56th among running backs in the latest expert consensus draft rankings.

Category: Rumors

According to sources, star WR Chris Godwin and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are not expected to reach an agreement on a long-term extension ahead of Thursday’s deadline. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Instead, Godwin will play the 2021 season on the franchise tag and he and the Buccaneers will re-enter negotiations ahead of the 2022 season. Sources say the Bucs value Godwin as a core player on offense and will work to strike a long-term deal with him after the 2021 season. With Godwin, Mike Evans, and Antonio Brown, Tampa Bay has one of the most formidable wide receiver groups in the NFL.

Joe Tryon signs rookie deal

Tue, Jun 22nd 8:35pm EDT
By Ari Koslow

Joe Tryon signed his rookie deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (Source: Buccaneers on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: Tryon was selected by Tampa Bay with the final pick of round one in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Category: Transactions

Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Kyle Trask has officially signed his four-year rookie deal with the team, per Rick Stroud. (Source: Rick Stroud on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The rookie quarterback drafted in the second round out of the University of Florida enters a Bucs regime buzzing off of a Super Bowl LV win with veteran gunslinger Tom Brady at the helm. Trask, a Heisman-finalist in 2020 after throwing for 4,283 yards and posting a 43 TD: 8 INT ratio, will be afforded the rare opportunity to learn and receive tutelage from an all-time great like Brady during his first season. Bruce Arians previously commented on Trask's impressive outing during rookie minicamps, making him a great player to target in dynasty start-ups and rookie drafts.

Category: Transactions

Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports that Bucs WR Antonio Brown's deal with the Buccaneers is officially signed. (Source: Mike Garafolo on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Brown was just waiting to pass a physical before signing his contract. Buccaneers have officially brought every single piece of last year's team back. In today's NFL, that's extremely rare. Brown was a key piece for the offense once he returned from his suspension. He will continue to build his chemistry with Tom Brady and will be a great value in fantasy drafts this season.

Category: Transactions

Former Los Angeles Chargers RB Troymaine Pope has signed a deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, per Greg Auman. (Source: Greg Auman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The 27-year old running back joins his fourth team after quiet usage during his two-year stint in L.A. Pope will provide depth in an already crowded running back room after impressing the Bucs' coaching staff during rookie minicamp. This signing doesn't do much for fantasy purposes but Pope could see some situational usage based on his 73.3 Ctch% out of the backfield throughout his four-year career.

Category: Transactions

The Buccaneers have re-signed free agent quarterback Blaine Gabbert. It's a one-year, $2.5 million deal between the Super Bowl champions and their signal-caller. (Source: Jeremy Fowler on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Bucs' depth chart behind Tom Brady is quite interesting. Gabbert, who completed nine of 16 passes last season for 143 yards and two touchdowns, joins a room that also includes Ryan Griffin and Kyle Trask. The former has spent six years with the Buccaneers, attempting just four passes. The latter, meanwhile, was drafted by Tampa Bay in April. He was the sixth quarterback off the board and the first taken outside of Round 1.

Category: Transactions

Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE Cameron Brate has reportedly agreed to a re-worked contract that transfers $2.45 million into a signing bonus while clearing $4.69 million in cap space for the Bucs, per Field Yates. (Source: Field Yates on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Among the latest trends in the NFL due to a reduced salary cap year in 2021, Brate has reportedly agreed to a re-worked deal that will allow the Bucs to re-sign WR Antonio Brown. Brate will receive a $1.075 million salary, including a nearly $2.5 million signing bonus that contains a team option for the final two years. The tight end out of Harvard made the most of his opportunity behind Rob Gronkowski during the 2020 season, catching 28 passes for 282 yards and two touchdowns during the regular season. Brate added another clutch touchdown during the NFC Championship game win against the Packers, showing the significance of re-signing the sure-handed veteran. His value is diminished due to Gronk but he will likely be available late in redraft leagues and should be a reliable floor player on rosters in 2021.

Category: Transactions, Rumors

Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports that Buccaneers have exercised the fifth-year option on DT Vita Vea. (Source: Tom Pelissero on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: This is not shocking as Vea is a vital piece in the Buccaneers elite defense. He only appeared in five games but made his presence known when on the field. Tampa Bay brought back virtually everybody on offense and defense and will look to win back-to-back championships. Buccaneers defense will be elite yet again in 2021.

Category: Transactions

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced they have re-signed veteran, backup QB Ryan Griffin. (Source: Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Fantasy Impact: Griffin spent the 2020 season as the third string QB for the Buccaneers and was inactive for every game. The current terms of the deal are still unknown. However, with Blaine Gabbert currently a free agent, Griffin at this point in time would be the backup to Tom Brady. Tampa Bay has also not ruled out the possibility of taking a QB in the early parts of the NFL Draft.

Category: Transactions

Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Buccaneers are re-signing veteran running back Leonard Fournette. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Fournette got off to a slow start in the 2020 season, ceding touches to a fellow former first-round pick, Ronald Jones II. As the season progressed though, Fournette started to take over the lead duties, eventually turning into "Playoff Lenny" where he totaled 300 rushing yards, 148 receiving yards, and four touchdowns en route to the Buccaneers Super Bowl win. Bruce Arians has a penchant for rolling out a committee of running backs, so Fournette will likely slide down draft boards in 2021. Still, he showed what he's capable of when given the starting duties and will have a high ceiling.

Category: Transactions

The Buccaneers and defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh are finalizing a one-year deal with $9 million fully guaranteed. The pact includes incentives. (Source: Tom Pelissero on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: This move was prefaced by the Donovan Smith extension, which created $10.6 million in cap space for 2021. Tampa Bay now solidifies its firepower in the trenches in hopes of running it back. The former No. 2 overall pick made 16 starts last year, recording six sacks and 44 tackles. He is a five-time Pro Bowler and three-time First-Team All-Pro.

Category: Transactions

The Buccaneers and key offensive lineman Donovan Smith are in agreement on a two-year, $31.8 million extension that keeps him in Tampa Bay through 2023. The pact guarantees Smith $30 million over the next two years. Such a restructuring of his contract drops Smith's cap number to $3.6 million in 2021 while adding two voidable years. (Source: Greg Auman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Buccaneers continue to play cap gymnastics in their pursuit of running it back. The move creates $10.6 million in cap space, giving Tampa Bay more room to re-signing players like Antonio Brown, Leonard Fournette, and Ndamukong Suh.

Category: Transactions

The Buccaneers re-signed K Ryan Succop to a three-year, $12 million contract on Wednesday. The deal includes $6.25 million guaranteed. (Source: Tom Pelissero on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: Succop re-signs with Tampa Bay as the Buccaneers try to retain their Super Bowl winning roster. He converted 28-of-31 field goal tries and 25-of-27 extra point attempts in 2020. Succop is a borderline K1 in fantasy and currently 15th among all kickers in the latest expert consensus rankings.

Category: Transactions