The NFL free agency is finally upon us, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are one of the teams with the most to gain. After winning the Super Bowl LV, the Bucs have some tough decisions to make, including how to improve their roster for the upcoming season. In this article, we take a look at three free agents that could provide an immediate boost to the Buccaneers’ defense and help them defend their championship.
The NFL free agency period is a time where teams look to improve their rosters and find the missing pieces that can take them to the next level. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are coming off a Super Bowl victory, but there is always room for improvement. Here are three free agents the Buccaneers should target.
1. Antonio Brown, Wide Receiver
Antonio Brown had a tumultuous 2020 season, but he showed flashes of his old self during the playoffs for the Buccaneers. Brown caught 45 passes for 483 yards and four touchdowns in just eight games with the Bucs last season. He formed a connection with quarterback Tom Brady, and the two were able to connect on crucial plays during the postseason.
Brown’s off-field issues may scare some teams off, but the Buccaneers were able to manage him last season. Head coach Bruce Arians has a history with Brown, as he coached him during his time in Pittsburgh. The Bucs also have a strong locker room presence, with leaders like Brady and Lavonte David. Adding Brown on a short-term deal could provide another weapon for Brady and a boost to the Buccaneers’ offense.
2. Richard Sherman, Cornerback
The Buccaneers have a strong secondary, led by Carlton Davis and Sean Murphy-Bunting. However, adding a veteran like Richard Sherman could take their defense to another level. Sherman is a proven winner, with a Super Bowl victory and multiple Pro Bowl appearances to his name.
Sherman may not have the athleticism he once had, but he makes up for it with his intelligence and technique. He is a student of the game and can help mentor the young defensive backs on the Bucs’ roster. Sherman could be a bargain signing for the Buccaneers, especially if he is willing to take a one-year deal.
3. Melvin Ingram, Edge Rusher
The Buccaneers have one of the best defensive lines in the league, but adding another edge rusher could make their defense even more dominant. Melvin Ingram has been a consistent force for the Chargers over the past few seasons, but he only played in seven games last year due to injuries.
When healthy, Ingram is a dynamic pass rusher who can play both sides of the line. He has recorded at least seven sacks in each of his last four healthy seasons. Ingram could pair nicely with Jason Pierre-Paul and Shaq Barrett, two of the best pass rushers in the NFL. The Buccaneers would have to hope Ingram can stay healthy, but signing him on a short-term deal could be worth the risk.
The Buccaneers are in a unique position as defending Super Bowl champions. They have most of their core players returning and will be looking to make a few strategic additions in free agency. Antonio Brown, Richard Sherman, and Melvin Ingram could all provide a boost to the Bucs’ roster. Adding these three players may be the recipe for repeating as champions.