Each day we look at players on the Buccaneers' roster and decide whether that player should be brought back for 2015 or if the Bucs should move on. When a team is 2-14, major changes lie on the horizon. Today, we take a look at defensive end Michael Johnson.
The Case to Keep: I know some want to focus on what Michael Johnson has already made from the Bucs, but what happened last year stays in last year. The fact is that if Johnson is cut this off-season $7 million of the $9 million owed to him will still be dead money towards the Bucs cap. I know Johnson was a disappointment last season, but cutting him would only save the Bucs $2 million towards their cap, and with Adrian Clayborn and Daquan Bowers possibly on the way out too, the Bucs would not have many players left to play end.
The Case to Cut: Sure, the Bucs might only gain $2 million towards their cap if they cut Michael Johnson this off-season, but that might be all he's worth anyways. Johnson was the Bucs biggest disappointment in 2014. The emergence of Jacquies Smith might also make releasing Johnson a little more tolerable as Smith came on strong in the 2nd half of 2014. Another player that might make cutting Johnson a little less noticeable would be if the Bucs were interested in bringing for USF Bulls DE Jason Pierre-Paul back to Tampa. Pierre-Paul is an unrestricted free agent.
Cut or Keep: The statistics and the film prove that Michael Johnson was a massive disappointment in 2014, but that might not be enough for the Bucs to wipe him and his contract off their books. I think the minimum $7 million that Johnson will count towards the Bucs cap in 2015 is enough to keep him around for one more year to see if he can rebound from a disastrous 1st season with the Bucs. If it is more of the same in 2015, Johnson will be cut immediately next off-season and the Bucs will save $8.5 million towards their cap then with NO dead money. KEEP
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