Any fan who wanted answers, as to why the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have not signed starting left tackle Donald Penn, a player who has started 44 games – is in the prime of his career, too a long term contract extension. Well that answer was disclosed this week by general manager Mark Dominik at One Buc Place during a Q&A session with season ticket holders. In a very candid moment, Dominik basically labeled Penn a good-for-nothing slob after he gained an excessive amount of weight and steadily regressed down the stretch in ’09.
“When you think about a left tackle and how important that position is, especially to a young franchise quarterback, and that guy during the season gains 40 pounds and basically turns his back to … keeping himself in shape, that’s disappointing to me,” Dominik said. “I’m just being blatantly honest with you.
“I expected better from him. … When you look at the film, he continued to digress (during the season). This has nothing to do with money from the organization. This has nothing to do with the Glazers and their financial situation. This is strictly for him to show what he is as a football player.”
Derek Fournier, a part-time local media personality known as “Old School,” who does fill-in host work on WQYK-AM 1010, and creator of WhatTheBuc.net was one of the many fans in attendance and recorded the Q&A session with Dominik. Fournier later posted the entire 40-minute chat from the aforementioned Q&A session on his site. Which was later pulled. Since then the team and further more, the teams new director of communications Jonathan Grella has stated that Dominik’s in depth speech and Q&A session with season ticket holders this week was “off-the-record” and not for media publication as Dominik was unaware he was being recorded.
Notice, that Grella and the Bucs aren’t denying Dominik said this, but that said remarks were not for public consumption. If it’s a public forum with fans, Dominik should tread a little more lightly with his words as anything he says or does could potentially be caught on tape with the advanced age of technology were in.
Penn who failed to sign his tender by the June 15 deadline was advised earlier in the week the team plans on exercising its right to reduce his originally tender offer of $3.168 million to 110% percent of his 2009 salary, which will bring Penn’s new tender offer to $3.068 million. With the latest developments between the Bucs and Penn, one can expect Rocky Arceneaux, the agent for Penn to advise his client to hunker down for a long battle, as the war of words has just begun, with Dominik taking the first shot.