For Bucs fans who have been hoping for some pass rushing help, they may be getting their wish.
According to Rand Getlin, former Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy will be visiting the Buccaneers this week.
With 204 tackles, 34 sacks and seven forced fumbles over the last five years, Hardy is easily the best 4-3 defensive end on the open market, and would fit into Lovie Smith and Leslie Frazier’s scheme perfectly. But can the Bucs afford the public relations blow-back that will undoubtedly occur if Hardy, who was accused on domestic violence and missed most of the 2014 season, were to be signed?
Hardy is on the commissioner’s exempt list after being found guilty by a district court judge of assaulting and communicating threats to ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder at his condo last May. He appealed the case to a jury of his peers, but the misdemeanor charges were dismissed last month when prosecutors couldn’t find his ex-girlfriend to testify.
The lack of guilt in a judicial court has created a quandary for both the NFL and Hardy. Hardy still faces disciplinary action, but will it revert back to the NFL’s two-game suspension that was in place prior to the Ray Rice situation last fall?
Teams have been shying away from the talented pass rusher, and the NFL has yet to announce if and for how many games Hardy will be suspended for. A one-year prove it type deal would be in the Bucs best interest, however when competing with two other teams, it may take a longer commitment to secure his services.
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at email@example.com
Well that’s good news, we were just talking about you Hardy! Again I’ll reiterate that if they Bucs sign Hardy it’ll go a long way towards changing what I think the Glazers will do with the 1st overall pick. It won’t change who I would rather have, but that’s never been the basis for my argument. I want Hardy because there is no better alternative, unlike with Winston where Mariota is a better alternative.
Hey Pink, if you think Mariota is the better alternative, you are dead wrong. The only thing holding Winston back is his off-field issues. Pretty much everyone on the planet thinks that Winston’s skill set and experience in a pro-style offense is head and shoulders above Mariota’s. I wont get into the dropping back, calling plays in a huddle, comeback victories or wins in close games etc. The only issue that is slowing down the Winston lovers is the off-field problems. He is CLEARLY the better fit, period.
Chip Kelly is now in the pros so therefore what he runs is technically a pro-style offense. His offense ranked in the top 5 the last two years with Nick freakin’ Foles and Mark freakin’ Sanchez. Yeah, butt fumble Mark Sanchez. There’s no reason we couldn’t draft Mariota, run a similar offense and score a ton of points. That’s aside from all the off field stuff Winston brings. On a side note I don’t care what everyone on the planet thinks. As you know, they been wrong before.
To clarify since I know we like to nitpick around here, since I’m obviously part of “everyone” I’ve been wrong before also. I just don’t think I’m wrong on this one. My point is I don’t agree with something just because the masses do, I only agree with it if it makes sense.
Winston has a higher floor but I agree that Mariota has a higher ceiling
See that is where I disagree with alot of people. Why does everyone say that Mariotas ceiling is higher when this is literally the first year in Winston’s whole life he will play football all year? He’s that good playing half a year of football.
I couldn’t disagree more. Winston is clearly the better alternative in the draft IMO, and his off field transgressions and accusations are 1000% better than what Hardy has been found GUILTY of in a court. I’d love to have Hardy’s talent on the team but would not be upset if they pass because of the type of person he is. I’m am completely comfortable with Winston being the face of the franchise.
Bucco63, A possible rape is 1000% better then a misedemeaner assualt charge? Really
The key word is “possible”. You don’t know that it happened. Hardy was convicted. There is a MASSIVE difference between the two.
I never got my wish with Wisinewski, at least not yet, so here is another one. C’mon Hardy! ! ! ! We need you in TB, besides, wouldn’t you love to play against the Panthers twice a year? Let’s go Bucs ! ! Please put in a very good offer and maybe even overpay a little. Yes, just a little for the best pass rusher that is available. It is a small price to pay, just remember to cover yourselves with some good clauses about suspensions and future issues that could arise. If we could somehow get Hardy and Wisinewski, what a wonderful draft it could be !!! Take best available player and improve the team. Right now we have to take best available player at certain positions because we have no choice, and that always spells trouble.
cross your fingers the cowpatties dont give him a contract…we need him to lay the hammer down on Brees,Matty and Cam….
Who knows if the 4 game suspension will hold~maybe it gets lowered to 2 or none since the case is basically done with and both he and his ex are looking to move on? He is way worth the risk IMO…
If we don’t pick him up someone else will. If they let Ray Lewis, Vick and a few others stay in football I have NO problem as long as you put the needed protections in place. This could be the best move for the Bucs in FA.
As long as there is stipulations in his contract which im sure everyone will have, he’s the type of talent we should slightly overpay for if it means signing him. His on field production justifies the risk as long as we can protect ourselves in his contract. Lovie/Licht have hopefully learned their lessons, gamble of production not hope. Pay this man!!!!
Sign him now. Don’t let this ,man walk out the door without a contract. I don’t care what it costs. This is a position of dire need and could help us with draft selections.
What really cracks me up about some of my fellow Bucs fans is how they all want Hardy right now, but Jameis is a scumbag. Let me be clear I want Hardy , but he was actually convicted of assault. The only reason he is not in jail right now is because him and the woman settled while he was appealing the ruling. It defies logic.
Since I’m pretty sure I’m one of the guys you’re referring to I’ll respond. I’ve made this point before but it bears repeating: I believe the Glazers won’t allow Winston to be chosen because of negative headlines and they want more jerseys sold of current players and they see bad character as a leading cause of that not happening. I on the other hand don’t want Winston because Mariota is available and I think he’s the better long term football player. I never called Winston a scumbag. I bring up all his negative transgressions in reference to why the Glazers won’t draft him. I was one of few guys around here standing up for Talib at every turn, so negative headlines are not a concern for me. I did the same for Blount and Mike Williams as well as K. Winslow. The headlines don’t even have to be legal, Penn got bad press for his weight and I was still one of the only ones who regularly defended him. All of this because what happens on the field and in the locker room are all I care about. Mariota generates more points than Winston and unlike winning, the points a QB generates in college can translate to the NFL in certain circumstances, one of those being a similar offense. If we run a similar offense to what Chip Kelly runs Mariota will use his arm, legs and brain to generate more points than Winston with fewer turnovers. What else matters? That’s why I support the move for G. Hardy but not Winston. If there was a pass rusher that I thought was better than Hardy available I would be campaigning for him. If there was a QB in the draft who had lower turnovers and generated more points in college than Mariota in an offense that has demonstrated to be a top 5 offense in the NFL, I’m be campaigning for him instead of Mariota.
Actually Pink I wasn’t thinking about you at all. I said fellow Bucs fans, but I’m talking about other sites and things of that nature.I wouldn’t put words in other peoples mouths. I know you said he was a headache, but never anything like scumbag. I’m being general here. I know you think Mariota is better and I respect that. Me, I think Winston is better in every way, it’s no secret.
As for the points about running an offense like Chip Kelly, you do realize we have Zero pieces like theirs. We have bigger slower receivers and a line that is not fast. You’re asking the Bucs to redo their entire roster for one guy. It’s not going to happen.
And as for the generation of points comparison, over the last two years that both QB’s have played, Oregon has averaged 44.6 points a game, FSU 43.3. And that’s with Jameis Winston sitting entire second halves in his first season. SO let’s not pretend like there is a huge difference there.
More points is always better, right?
Well then I’m sorry for the poor assumption on my part. Riley Cooper and Jordan Matthews are not speedsters. They’re both bigger guys that ran 4.5+ at the combine just like Evans did. I don’t know what Jackson runs in the 40 but L. Murphy ran about a 4.4. From what I see the NFL version of Chip Kelly’s defense only needs one speedster WR somewhere on the field to be successful. Even if Murphy isn’t the guy I think it’s easier to find a WR who can run a sub 4.4 40 than it is to find a QB capable of putting up the points in a traditional offense that Mariota can put up in an offense built to his strengths.
Just to be clear, that wasn’t sarcasm above, I really was apologizing for the bad assumption about who you were talking to there. Sometimes things said in text can be misleading.
NO offense taken PInk, I know it looked odd when I read it after as text is difficult to differentiate. However even with that little tiff me and Jon had back in the day, I respect my fellow Pewter report readers. Some Bucs fans on Facebook on the other hand, not so much.
Watch this clip Pink, it’s from grudens qb camp with Mariota. It’s only a clip but shows my main problem with Mariota. Way too timid in the huddle and fumbling with wording of the plays a bit because he’s never had to do it. I know he’s your boy and you won’t change your mind. I just want to show you what bothers me. Also the lack of accuracy on his throws in the video. The ones to the nets in particular.
For those of us that want Hardy don’t get our hopes up because the rumor is that M. Bennett wants out of Seattle. Choice is Seattle or Bucs, we lose!
I also read that the bucs are merely exploring the option of Hardy and have not scheduled a visit yet.
It wouldn’t let me reply to your comment with the link in it above for some reason so I’m replying here. No one wants to see the negative things you pointed out in that video, including me. However, what he does in games trumps what he does in shorts. He’ll be fine with the huddle calls by the end of training camp. The accuracy and timing from deep drops will be there by Week 8 along with reading NFL defense while he’s dropping back. After that you’ll be left with a QB who can do all the same things as Winston without as many INT’s and fantastic scrambling ability.
Well I think this brings us to the crux of the matter surrounding Winston, Hardy, Peterson, Rice, etc etc…either you’re okay with our players (because they make Tds and get sacks) regardless of who they are as people, or you would rather we have good people (like GMC, VJax, etc.) and you hope to build a team of good people that are also good players. Clearly this second approach is much harder to do and would at a minimum take longer, but it would seem significantly more satisfying…I think this is largely why everyone loved beating the Raiders of the 70’s and 80’s…anyway, I think if you’re okay with Winston, you should be okay with Hardy and if you would rather have a team of good people then maybe that’s not the NFL?
Agreed, but the NFL comes down to winning and u can’t do that with a team of choir boys. I think a little attitude on our defense could do us some good. We already have GMC so y not even it out a bit?
Well buc fans I see that cowboys has the first say.But Tampa will be the last say.If Tampa has Hardy coming to Bucs for a visit,And he doesn’t sign with the other two.I’d say give him the money-Go Bucs
Fina-f@ckn-lee! Don’t let this man walk out the door without a contract. With all the competition, a 1 year contract won’t cut it. Give him 3+ years and our defense is on it’s way back to the good old days! GMC = Sapp, LVD = Brooks, and now Hardy = Rice!
I am very dubious that Hardy intends to visit here, or that the Bucs definitely want him to come. It seems like a bunch of posturing to drive up the price and seduce the Cowboys and potentially the Seahawks to make an contract offer right away.
Rick Stroud is reporting that no visit is scheduled yet.
PS, why must everything devolve into a Winston/Mariota debate?
Rick Stroud can’t report, besides he likes Winston over Mariota :-)…see what i did there…
Greg Hardy even with his off field problems he is still a must for Jason and Lovie to pick up in F.A. and we can get him at a good price. But the only problem for me is having Greg Hardy and Jamies Winston on the same team. That would barther me a lot.I’m sure it would barther a lot of Buccaneers fans. I know it’s about wining games but it’s also about integrity.
We waited too long to act on this guy~I dont think he will even make his meeting with us as Cowpatties and Shehawks lined up first..I dont see him passing up the seahawks gig~miss 4 games and have a great chance of being a SB contender…Get suspended a year and 4 games,return and get a ring and give Goodell the finger…
Gee, weren’t the Boys broke? Don’t they ever run out of money? This looks more like a face saving move for L&L. That way when they go into the season with no DE and no pass rush they can say they TRIED! Have no idea how they are going to fix the O-Line mess they got themselves into.
I think the only thing that makes sense is that L&L went to the Glazers and said “hey, we tried the whole FA, quick-fix thing and it didn’t work, so are you boys okay if we try the long-term rebuilding approach now…it’s going to take probably 3 drafts (and we’ll add a few bench players in FA along the way) to make us a playoff contender”….so I have no hope in 2015 for the OLine being fixed, the DLine being productive, the rookie QB being a contributor, or us winning anything more than 4 games…unless we happen to sign Hardy and Wisniewski…but I don’t think that was in the Glazer discussion…
East End Boy I think you hit the nail right on the head. Once they bombed out and overpaid last year. They figured to at least give themselves another year or two of job security.
Well, if we miss on Hardy (especially if he signs with Seattle) we may get a shot at getting Bennett back.
One question Pink, Frazer, or Ali? Why do I ask? You posted a response to me that you are black, and prefer Mariota. I had said that I believed young black men, which comprises 75 percent of the NFL would much prefer to play for Winston. Jameis, I know I’m better then you, I look good, and I know it. Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, I’m so pretty! Old, white guys, and old blacks a like couldn’t stand that kind of talk from Ali, just like it turns them off when Winston speaks that way. Don’t know if you’re old enough to remember, but the first fight between Ali, and Frazer reminds me a lot of the way fans feel between M.M., and J.W.. So Pink, Frazer, or Ali?
@plopes808~ Bennett would likely choose Atlanta over a return to the Sucs~ Bucs…
Still no post by NFL regarding HArdy signing~thats the best news of the day so far..Unless they are just ironing out the details…sucks not knowing..
cremdonado, I don’t hold much hope in getting Hardy. I mean, when is the last time the Bucs got lucky?
Jets beating Green Bay in Week 17 of 2002? A couple close calls in 2005? Certainly not this decade.
@kinderrt- it doesn’t take luck if you have the BALLS to move before the pack…Us getting him is now a long shot- especially with him spending the night in Dallas( we will wake up to news of the signing).The problem here is again- our leadership not addressing holes they have created and waiting too long to identify a potential target with talent at a position of need and then sleeping on the guy until others are lined up in front of us…I will stick to my claims- Lovie is not the man for this job and Licht is suspect at this point too..
Another Buccaneers front office fumble…
I’m just waiting to hear we are bringing in Baby Beater Peterson for a meeting- if we sign or trade for a child abuser,my days with Tampa are over…
I personally have no problem with AP. Yeah, he hit his kid with a switch, once, and paid the price. Justice has been served; however, he should not be penalized for his entire life over a mistake.
If we were to apply the PC standards of today and go back a few years, every parent in my neighborhood would be guilty of child abuse. I remember seeing a belt more than once while growing up. While I am not advocating a return to the 60’s in corporal punishment for kids, I do believe that AP has paid the price for his mistake. I’d love to see him here.
Well it looks like if the Bucs want Hardy they will have to overpay him. That is the only way we can get top talent.
@kinderrt~ especially if he has an injury in need of rehabbing…
NFL has us now in a foot race with the Cow patties for Hardy’s services.Advantage Cow patties since he has yet to visit us…
Seriously though~ shouldnt Tampa be the home of the player nicknamed the Krakken? Just like ‘Fire The Cannons’ when he hits the field or records a sack,Raymond James could ring out with the words~’Release The Krakken ‘!
We are due for some luck,lets cross our fingers the smell of cow s**t doesnt appeal to the beast from the deep…
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