Face Off 4/17 : Should the Buccaneers keep Mike Alstott?


Alstott leave Tampa Bay? No way.

Bucs General Manager Rich McKay and head coach Jon Gruden would have to be nuts not to resign Alstott to a long-term deal to keep him in Tampa for the rest of his career.

In a Gruden-esque offense, players must be physical, not finesse types. Alstott would be a perfect fit for the new scheme because he has proven repeatedly that he is the most physical player on the team. Just one reminder of his ability came when he broke eight tackles on one particular run to the red zone against the New Orleans Saints last season.

With a 4.1-yard average and 70 points last season, Alstott is the most effective player the Buccaneers have had on offense. He carried the load for a struggling, conservative offense and overcame poor blocking conditions to get the team first downs and points when no other Buc could step up and produce.

Posting 11 touchdowns last year, the A-Train’s red-zone record is also impressive. He is unstoppable by that point, when most defenses are too tired and sluggish to contain him. His second and third efforts have gained the Buccaneers touchdowns and have won them many games.

Alstott is a very famous player for Tampa Bay. He has gained national attention with his bone-crushing hits. His style of running is known throughout the NFL. He is also a fan favorite in Tampa. It would be a shame to let another team benefit from such a player. The Buccaneers should spend their money wisely and invest it in Mike Alstott, no matter the cost. Why spend money on less talented players who are not proven winners?

Mary Goodman


The dismantling of the Buccaneers backfield is almost complete. Warrick Dunn was lured away by Arthur Blank’s large checkbook, and Tampa Bay faces a perplexing dilemma with its other backfield stalwart, Mike Alstott.

Well, let me tell you, the decision is simple. Sell off Alstott at any cost, which is precisely what the Bucs are planning. Why else did the team and Alstott agree to push back the deadline on his $1.8 million roster bonus? Because Tampa Bay has finally realized that it’s time to stop overpaying for a guy too big and slow to be a tailback and unable or willing to block like an NFL-caliber fullback should.

Perhaps the rest of the league hasn’t been clued into either of those facts, and the Bucs can get a decent draft pick for him. That’s if anyone can overlook the fact that even at 240 pounds he fumbles more often than your average pee-wee team. Alstott gained just 680 yards last season. The fact remains that he’s never going to be the every-down workhorse that Tampa hasn’t had since James Wilder in the mid ’80s.

Considering Tampa Bay doesn’t pick until the third round, if they could swindle a second or third rounder from someone, as well as dumping Alstott’s $2 million salary, they could be in good shape. An extra draft pick might also help alleviate Tampa’s needs at receiver.

Trade him or cut him, but the fact remains that it’s time for the Bucs and Alstott to separate. They tried to make it work, but it would be best for both sides to move on.

Anthony Gagliano