Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Salary Cap Figure: $92,498,545
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a questionable decision to hit the free-agent market heavy last season. They doled out a total of nearly $140 million to Carl Nicks, Vincent Jackson and Eric Wright last April (via Spotrac).
While Jackson had a tremendous amount of success in his first season with Tampa Bay, the other two failed to make much of an impact. Wright dealt with injuries and a suspension, while Nicks, the class of the 2012 NFL free-agent class, missed the final nine games of the season with a toe injury.
Despite these issues, Tampa Bay is expected to hit the free-agent market hard this week. It has over $40 million to spend.
The Tampa Bay Times has indicated that the Buccaneers are not expect to retain free-agent defensive end Michael Bennett, who recorded a career-high nine sacks this past season.
This coupled with the recent arrest of Da'Quan Bowers on gun-possession charges leads me to believe that Tampa Bay will be looking to find multiple upgrades along its defensive line (via CBS Sports). Bowers and Bennett combined for nearly half of Tampa Bay's sacks this past season.
On that note, multiple free agents have been linked to the Buccaneers.
According to Pro Football Talk, Tampa Bay joined multiple teams interested in defensive end John Abraham. The former Pro Bowler fits its 4-3 defense to a T and would be a major upgrade. Though, it is important to note that San Francisco and Seattle should be considered favorites to land Abraham.
As mentioned by Roy Cummings of The Tampa Tribune, Tampa Bay could be looking at multiple options. He brings up such top-tier free agents as: Sean Smith, Derek Cox, Delanie Walker and Danny Amendola.
In addition, the Buccaneers are said to be extremely interested in obtaining Pro Bowl cornerback Darrelle Revis from the New York Jets (via The Tampa Bay Times).
Either way, the Buccaneers are going to be hot suitors for some of the top free agents. They're still a relatively young team with a whole heck of a lot of talent on both sides of the ball. If they are able bring in solid free-agent and draft classes, it wouldn't surprise me to see them in the conversation for a postseason spot in '13.
As with every team on this list, it is all about pinpointing areas of weakness and going out there to find suitable upgrades.
Salary cap figures provided by Spotrac
Vincent Frank is a NFL featured columnist here at Bleacher Report. He was hired on prior to the 2011 season and couldn't be happier working with a great group of individuals here. In addition, Vincent is the head sports editor over at eDraft and co-host of eDraft Sports Radio, which airs every Monday and Wednesday from 3-6 PM ET. Go ahead and give him a follow on Twitter @VincentFrankNFL.