For as much well-deserved praise as GM Jason Licht has received for building a roster that has won a Super Bowl and three straight NFC South titles in Tampa Bay, the Bucs have gotten a key assist from assistant GM Mike Greenberg.
The day when Greenberg would draw interest from other teams for vacant general manager positions was sure to come, and it’s been a bit surprising that it has taken this long.
But it finally arrived this week when Carolina requested permission to speak with Greenberg to interview for the Panthers G.M. job. The Glazers have a policy of not blocking career advancement and permitted Greenberg to interview with the Panthers. That interview took place on Saturday in Charlotte.
If Carolina shows interest in hiring Greenberg, the Glazers, and the Bucs organization would be wise to step in and give him enough of a raise that would encourage him to stay.
Not just to keep a brilliant mind out of a division rival’s organization, but to reward the loyalty of Greenberg, who absolutely loves the franchise and has been one of the vital elements of the team’s success through the years.
Greenberg, who has been with the Bucs since 2010 when he was hired by former general manager Mark Dominik as a personnel assistant, has been an invaluable member of Tampa Bay’s front office. Much more than the salary capologist that he is often depicted being, Greenberg is the trusted strategist of the Bucs’ brass.
And actually runs the entire budget for the football side of the organization – not just the salary cap. Greenberg sets the budget and oversees the purchases for the team’s travel, equipment, video, scouting, and groundskeeping.
Most importantly, Greenberg is also Licht’s right-hand man. The Bucs’ front office has been a well-oiled machine for the past decade with Licht at the helm and has performed at the highest level over the team’s recent four-year playoff run. Why the Bucs would want to risk an engine breakdown without using the same high-performance oil? That doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Licht and Greenberg brought Jacqueline Davidson into the organization in 2019 to work with them in terms of budgeting, strategy, and contract negotiations.
Greenberg is truly irreplaceable, but Davidson, the team’s vice president of football research, would be the most capable replacement if it came to that.
Both Licht and Greenberg think the world of her, and she could very well be a future general manager in the league in time. But if Greenberg were to be hired by Carolina, what if he tried to take Davidson with him to work in the Panthers front office with a promotion, such as assistant general manager?
Losing Greenberg alone would be disastrous for the organization because he’s a one-of-a-kind strategist. But Licht and the Bucs couldn’t withstand Greenberg and potentially Davidson departing for a division rival.
Whatever the Glazers need to do to keep Greenberg would be a big step toward solidifying the Bucs’ dominance in the NFC South for years to come. Letting him go to a division rival would only strengthen the Panthers and weaken the Buccaneers.