Brate was among a contingent of Buccaneers skill-position players that attended a workout organized by Tom Brady at Berkeley Preparatory School on Tuesday, Rick Stroud and Joey Knight of the Tampa Bay Times report. Brate reportedly had already been getting some work in with Brady for multiple weeks, but he was joined by a significant number of his teammates Tuesday. That included fellow tight end O.J. Howard but apparently not Rob Gronkowski, who already has plenty of familiarity with the Buccaneers' new quarterback. Brate's track record of dependable routes and hands -- not to mention his red-zone prowess -- could make him one of Brady's more dependable second-tier targets when the future Hall of Famer drops back this coming season.
Brate is less likely to be traded than O.J. Howard in the wake of the Buccaneers' acquisition of Rob Gronkowski on Tuesday, Greg Auman of The Athletic reports. Auman cites two principal factors for this line of thinking, the first being that Brate already agreed to a contract restructure in March that saw him take a $4.25 million pay cut to remain on the roster for 2020. The other is the likelihood the 28-year-old would fetch a lower draft pick in a trade than the younger and more athletic Howard, despite Brate's superior proficiency in the red zone and more productive career to date. If he indeed remains in Tampa for the coming season, it's conceivable Brate plays a relatively similar role to that of the last two seasons, when he posted a combined 66-600-10 line off 104 targets across 32 games while serving in a complementary capacity alongside Howard.
Brate agreed to restructure his contract with Tampa Bay on Sunday, Greg Auman of The Athletic reports. Brate was originally due to make $6 million with the team in 2020, but he's expected to take a pay cut of some kind. He's been a steady contributor for the Buccaneers in his career, as over the past five years, his 27 touchdowns ranks fourth among tight ends over that span. Despite likely sitting behind O.J. Howard on the depth chart heading next season, his fantasy value received a major boost when Tom Brady elected to sign with Tampa Bay.
Brate secured one of three targets for a two-yard touchdown in the Buccaneers' 28-22 overtime loss to the Falcons on Sunday. He finished the 2019 season with 36 receptions (55 targets) for 311 yards and four touchdowns across 16 games. Brate at least managed to get into the end zone during the finale, salvaging what was otherwise a disappointing performance. The tight end did boost both his reception and receiving yardage totals over those of 2018, but his numbers were still modest. Brate's production was unpredictable from week to week, as he posted a trio of catch-less efforts and also had three one-reception tallies. He's on the book for a reasonable $6 million in 2020, and it would seem likely the Buccaneers keep him around in what will be the third season of a six-year contract signed before the 2018 campaign.
Brate secured two of five targets for 17 yards in the Buccaneers' 23-20 loss to the Texans on Saturday. The expectation was that Brate and fellow tight end O.J. Howard would see an uptick in workload Saturday with both Mike Evans and Chris Godwin sidelined due to hamstring injuries. However, that didn't equate to any uptick in production for Brate, who actually generated his lowest production of the last three games. It's likely Godwin misses the Week 17 tilt against the Falcons, while Evans is already on injured reserve; therefore, the possibility for extra targets could be there for Brate once more in the regular-season finale.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|1||09/13||@New Orleans Saints||8||6.12|
|4||10/04||Los Angeles Chargers||11||6.25|
|6||10/18||Green Bay Packers||14||6.78|
|7||10/26||@Las Vegas Raiders||0.00|
|8||11/03||@New York Giants||25||8.00|
|9||11/09||New Orleans Saints||8||6.12|
|11||11/24||Los Angeles Rams||20||7.25|
|12||11/29||Kansas City Chiefs||21||7.32|
|3 Year Avg||61||38||397||5||24||10.45||69|