The secondary of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was a weak point this previous season. Under new Head Coach Bruce Arians, that will be addressed. Could free agent to be and former Cardinal Tyrann Matheiu be a target?
Fans and arm chair general mangers everywhere are looking at the Buccaneers roster and making a dream list of potential free agents. I too, am looking and am enamored with plenty of potential players that would make an instant impact to this team. Addressing the secondary is a must and Tyrann Matheiu is a prime candidate.
Has the market changed?
It appeared this season that the price for safeties may have dipped some. First, Eric Reid went unsigned then the Panthers signed him to a one year prove it $1.39 million-dollar contract. Though there may have been bias involved. Kenny Vaccaro would find himself in a similar position. The Titans meanwhile would sign Vaccaro to a one year $1.5 million-dollar contract. On the other hand Mathieu would sign with the Texans for $7 million-dollars on a one year deal. Significantly less than he would have earned had he not been released. That extension, in 2016, the Arizona Cardinals gave Mathieu a five-year $62.5 million extension with $40 million guaranteed. That’s an average of $12.5 million a year.
I fully expect that Mathieu will command something like the contract he was given in Arizona before his departure. At 26, he should see a five-year contract. Carrying him through to the start of his thirties. It will most likely be around the $11 to $12.5 million-dollar mark.
Most fans have identified Bruce Arians and Todd Bowles as the draw to Tampa. I couldn’t agree more. Signing with the Buccaneers would reunite him with one of his defensive coordinators and the head coach who took a chance on him in 2013 draft. The only issue? Matheiu has expressed interest in resigning with the Texans and they want him back too. He may also view the Texans as a better contender as they made the playoffs this year. There may be a bidding war.
During the season the Buccaneers and Jason Licht made an attempt to trade for Landon Collins. Now a free agent he could be an alternative to Matheiu. He is younger and not as productive, but a very good player. Todd Bowles and the defensive team could mold him into a great player. One that could come at a lesser price than what Matheiu will command.
Others: LaMarcus Joiner, HaHa Clinton-Dix