Good evening, folks. As you all know (unless you’ve been living under a rock), Tom Brady retired for the second straight offseason in a row on February 1st. And yes Bucs’ fans, this time it appears to be for real. Well, at least I think it is. Some would argue with me that they need to see it to believe it, which is fair.
Brady’s retirement gives the Bucs significant salary cap relief in 2023
The running joke among New Orleans, Atlanta, and Carolina fans on social media is the Bucs’ purportedly-precarious salary cap situation. The Bucs sit at over $55 million over the salary cap per OverTheCap.com. Now, with the Brady announcement, Tampa Bay can reduce Brady’s $35 million-dollar cap hit to $11 million in 2023 and $24 million in 2024, which reduces the team’s amount over the cap by 44%.
That’s a heck of a goodbye present from Brady to the Bucs. Had he signed with another team, that would have put the entire $35 million on the Bucs’ salary cap figure for 2023, and restructuring deals and/or cutting players to be able to get under the figure while also addressing roster needs would have been very daunting.
Now, Jason Licht and his team of wizard capologists can work to put a competitive roster together to again contend for what should be a very winnable NFC South division.
Thank you, Tom. For the amazing three years, a Super Bowl championship, an unforgettable boat parade…and a little bit of help for the 2023 season.
Could Derek Carr be…good…? And when is he available?
I wrote about Carr not long ago being one of the better options for Tampa Bay, but preferred Jimmy Garoppolo as my top available player.
Well, the 2022 Pro Bowler (weird to write) put on a clinic in the Pro Bowl passing drills.
The boy @derekcarrqb just DOMINATED 🎯 pic.twitter.com/0iqw2JH59V
— Bussin' With The Boys 🐺 (@BussinWTB) February 3, 2023
I know. I know. They’re drills. There are no rushers or defenders to read. But the physical skills and touch are undeniable. I think Carr has had enough of a track record to be worth inquiring about what it would take to get him.
The question remains: when can that happen? The Raiders have until February 15 to either release or trade him before they owe him a whopping $40 million guaranteed over the next two seasons. According to Adam Schefter, teams have already agreed to compensation with the Raiders about acquiring Carr. Schefter also noted this situation is the same as the Deshaun Watson saga last offseason…although the difference here is no one will be clamoring to offer Carr a mega-contract like Watson.
The ball is ultimately in Carr’s court, as he holds a no-trade clause the same as Watson did. Is Licht one of the GMs that has put in a trade offer to the Raiders? Is the veteran QB reciprocally interested in coming to Tampa Bay?
We’ll very likely find out inside the next two weeks what Carr’s new home will be, and perhaps whether Tampa Bay has their starting quarterback for 2023.
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