NFL Rumors: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Want to Re-Sign Pro Bowl Defensive Tackle

Not a lot went right for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2022, but they apparently liked what they saw from one of their free-agent splashes. Speaking with the media at the owner's meeting, head coach Todd Bowles expressed hope that the team could still re-sign Akiem Hicks.

Hicks signed on with the Bucs last offseason on a one-year, $8 million deal. He appeared in 11 games, compiling 22 tackles, 1.0 sacks, and two tackles for loss. He earned a 61.9 overall grade from Pro Football Focus for his efforts. 

The Bucs may have finished with an 8-9 record last season, but their defense showed signs of competence: they ranked 13th in points allowed and ninth in yards allowed. Preserving that side of the roster and sticking with what worked last year could at least keep the Bucs out of the NFL's basement.

Hicks' production may have been relatively modest in 2022, but he has elite play on his resume. He was a Pro Bowler in 2018 with the Chicago Bears, and he earned PFF grades between 76.2 and 91.7 from 2016 to 2019. If the Bucs enjoyed his veteran leadership, it makes sense to give him another chance.  He turns 34 in November, and he should be available for a reasonable price. He probably won't command the money he did last year. 

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