Tampa Bay Buccaneers

More Trade Rumors: Bucs, Eagles, Pats

Let’s take a look at a couple more trade-related items to add to this morning’s rumors:

Trade Buzz: V-Jax, Rams, Vikings

There seems to be more buzz surrounding this year’s NFL trade deadline than in years past, and Michael Fensom of the National Desk points out that Week 8 will be the final “audition” for those players who have generated the most interest, including the BuccaneersVincent Jackson and the BengalsJermaine Gresham. Fensom also observes that, since January 2012, the teams that have made the most trades are also among the most successful clubs on the field.

Of course, as CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora writes, the odds that a major trade comes to fruition are pretty slim, especially since so few teams are clearly out of the hunt at this point in the season. That does not mean, however, that it is not worth your while to take a look at some of the latest trade buzz. The trade deadline is Tuesday, October 28:

  • NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport tweets that the Eagles, Patriots, and Seahawks are among the teams calling about Jackson. He adds (via Twitter) that the Chiefs are also involved. He points out, however, that the Buccaneers are looking for real value in any trade involving Jackson, and Rapoport defines “real value” as a second-round pick (Twitter link).
  • Rapoport tweets that another player that could be on the move is Rams DT Kendall Langford, who has generated some interest. La Canfora believes that St. Louis may have also fielded some calls on RB Zac Stacy.
  • La Canfora writes that the Raiders are willing to deal Matt Schaub, but there is unsurprisingly not much of a market for him.
  • La Canfora adds that players who had previously been discussed as trade possibilities, like the EaglesBrandon Graham, have since been taken off the table.
  • Fensom reasons that, given the Seahawks‘ reported interest in tight ends, Seattle is a potential landing spot for Gresham.
  • Our Zach Links recently wrote that Titans WR Nate Washington has been made available via trade, but Fensom writes that other Tennessee players like Wesley Woodyard and Michael Griffin are also rumored to be available.
  • There is also speculation that the Vikings are looking to sell, and Fensom lists Adrian Peterson, Chad Greenway, and Greg Jennings as potential trade chips.

Extra Points: McCoy, Woodyard, Mosley, Smith

The Buccaneers and Gerald McCoy exchanged countless proposals and they have been working on a deal every week since before camp, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. It’s a deal that both sides wanted and they got it done with a reported seven-year, $98MM extension earlier today.

Here are some other notes from around the NFL:

Rob DiRe contributed to this post.

Buccaneers Sign Gerald McCoy To Extension

5:34pm: Reports of $51MM in guaranteed are not entirely true, writes Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. While his $32.35MM becomes guaranteed after the 2016 Super Bowl, the rest of the $51.5MM does not become guaranteed until the third day of the 2016 league year.

In the unlikely event that McCoy does not live up to his contract over the rest of this year and 2015, the team could get out from the contract without paying that additional $19MM that becomes guaranteed in 2016.

12:03pm: The Buccaneers have reportedly locked up one of the best defensive lineman in the game, as Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports (via Twitter) that the team has signed defensive tackle Gerald McCoy to a seven-year deal. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport tweets that the deal is worth $98MM with $51MM guaranteed.

Roy Cummings of the Tampa Bay Tribune tweets that the deal with pay McCoy an extra $7MM this season, raising his pay to $20MM for 2014. He adds that that incentives will allow the contract to reach $98MM, with the guaranteed money coming in the first four years of the contract. He also notes (via Twitter) that McCoy’s average annual salary of $14MM will make him the highest-paid defensive tackle in the league.

The two sides have been rumored to be working on a deal for months, and it only seemed like a matter of time before an agreement was finally reached. The former number-three pick had his best statistical season in 2013, finishing with 50 tackles and 9.5 sacks. He’s compiled only 17 sacks and two sacks in 2014, but he still rates among the best at his position. Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics (subscription required) ranks McCoy as the best defensive tackle in the league, and his pass-rushing rating is comparable to some of the best defensive ends and linebackers in the league.

Even more staggering is his impact on the Buccaneers. Pro Football Focus ranks Tampa Bay as the worst defense in the league and McCoy is only one of three Bucs (Alterraun Verner and Lavonte David are the others) to warrant a positive ranking by PFF.

McCoy was finishing the final year of his five-year, $63MM rookie contract signed in 2010.

Minor Moves: Thursday

Since Thursday is typically a quieter day for transactions during the NFL season, we’ll round up today’s minor 53-man roster and practice squad moves right here, rather than splitting them into separate posts. Here’s the latest:

  • The Broncos announced today (via Twitter) that they’ve released safety John Boyett from their practice squad following his arrest earlier this week on a misdemeanor third-degree assault charge.

Earlier updates:

  • The Chiefs have signed linebacker Darin Drakeford to their practice squad, according to Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star (via Twitter). Paylor adds that Drakeford takes the practice squad spot vacated by linebacker Orie Lemon, who has signed to the Buccaneers‘ 53-man roster. Tampa Bay had an opening on its roster after Da’Quan Bowers was moved to the reserve/suspended list for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.
  • After clearing waivers, tight end Rashaun Allen has returned to the Seahawks, signing to the club’s practice squad, tweets Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times.

NFC Notes: Jackson, Murray, Seahawks

Here’s a round-up of a few Thursday notes from around the NFC:

  • Vincent Jackson has been cited frequently as one of the trade candidates to watch as Tuesday’s deadline approaches, but if it were up the Buccaneers wideout, he wouldn’t be going anywhere, as he tells Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com. “I think bringing Lovie in and the staff that he’s brought and his mentality and his goals are aligned with mine and I think a lot of guys in this locker room,” Jackson said. “I hope for us to start the tradition here of winning football in Tampa Bay. I hope to stay in this uniform and this jersey and help bring that.”
  • While having a monster season in a contract year typically bodes well for a player’s future earnings, former Packers executive Andrew Brandt of TheMMQB.com examines whether DeMarco Murray‘s big numbers, buoyed by a huge workload, may actually be hurting him financially.
  • Before he signed with the Titans’ practice squad, linebacker Nate Askew was one of a handful of players to work out for the Seahawks, according to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter link). In addition to Askew and players previously reported, the club also auditioned defensive end Sammy Brown and tight end Michael Egnew, as well as bringing in defensive end Austen Lane for a visit (Twitter links).
  • A few more tryouts, via Wilson: The Buccaneers are working out punter Brock Miller (Twitter link), the Cowboys took a look at offensive lineman Keavon Milton (Twitter link), and Washington auditioned defensive end Lawrence Sidbury (Twitter link).

South Notes: Panthers, Griffin, Titans, Bucs

Plenty of Panthers players were caught off guard by the team’s release of veteran defensive back Charles Godfrey, according to Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer, who says words like “shocking” and “surprising” were used to describe the move.

“With a guy of his stature who’s been here for as long as he had, and all of a sudden you wake up and he’s not here, it’s definitely got to be a shock. It’s shocking to me,” said fellow defensive back Roman Harper. “But it’s a job. We’ve got to take it seriously and understand that nobody’s job is safe from top to bottom. They’ll always fire you before you get them fired. That’s just what I’ve always been taught.”

As the Panthers’ defense adjusts to life without Godfrey and one of the newest additions to the free agent market looks for work, let’s check out a few more items from around the NFL’s two South divisions….

  • We heard yesterday that the Titans had been entertaining trade discussions involving wide receiver Nate Washington, and it sounds like he’s not the only veteran the team is mulling moving. In addition to confirming the Washington report, Terry McCormick of TitanInsider.com says he has heard defensive back Michael Griffin may be on the block as well (Twitter link). The Titans, who announced last night that Zach Mettenberger will start at quarterback this weekend, seem to be “embracing” a rebuild, notes McCormick.
  • Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter link) adds several new names to the list of players to audition for the Panthers this week. According to Wilson, the club took a look at cornerbacks Trevin Wade, Robert Steeples, Ellis Lankster, and Josh Victorian, as well as offensive linemen Ryan Miller and Matt Patchan.
  • Besides the players they signed to their 53-man roster or practice squad, the Buccaneers also worked out linebackers Erin Henderson and Lawrence Wilson this week, tweets Wilson. Per Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (via Twitter), Henderson had a tryout with the Titans too.
  • Cornerback Deveron Carr auditioned for the Jaguars this week, according to Wilson (via Twitter).

NFC South Notes: Bowers, Falcons, Saints

Despite having already had their bye week, the Buccaneers have given up more points than any other team in the NFL — in six contests, Tampa Bay has surrendered 204 points, good for an average of 34 per game. Today, the Bucs’ defense took another hit when the league announced that defensive end Da’Quan Bowers has been suspended two games for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs (Twitter link via Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports).

The league’s new policy on PEDs calls for suspensions of up to six games for first-time violations, but the use of a diuretic or masking agent results in just a two-game ban. And Ian Rapoport of NFL.com confirms (via Twitter) that Bowers’ failed test came as the result of a diuretic, which explains the relatively modest penalty.

Let’s check in on the Bucs’ rivals, and round up the news from elsewhere in the NFC South…

  • Following the season-ending injury suffered by center Peter Konz, the Falcons signed offensive lineman Jonathan Scott, but the team also auditioned fellow lineman Thomas Austin, per Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (via Twitter).
  • The Saints just got Mark Ingram back this past week, but now they’ll be without another running back, according to Rapoport, who tweets that Pierre Thomas is expected to miss two or three weeks with a shoulder injury.
  • Offensive tackle Bruce Campbell worked out today for the Panthers, a league source tells Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk (Twitter link).

Bucs Sign Trindon Holliday

3:24pm: In addition to confirming the moves noted below, the Buccaneers also announced that they’ve waived defensive end Scott Solomon from the active roster, promoting defensive end T.J. Fatinikun from the practice squad to take his place. Additionally, the club cut linebacker Shayne Skov from the practice squad, using the two new openings on linebacker Mister Alexander and wideout Marcus Thigpen.

TUESDAY, 10:11am: As anticipated, the Bucs are cutting wideout and kick returner Solomon Patton to make room for Holliday, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun.

MONDAY, 9:02pm: The Buccaneers have agreed to sign wide receiver Trindon Holliday, according to Rick Stroud of WDAE (on Twitter). The team could announce the signing as early as tomorrow.

Holliday, 28, was placed on IR with a hamstring injury by the Giants in late August and released earlier this month. Since then, the Bears and the Colts auditioned him, but he’ll be joining the Bucs instead. Of course, Holliday is known mostly for his work as a kick returner. In 2012 and 2013, Holliday returned 81 punts for 752 yards and two touchdowns. Meanwhile, he averaged a healthy 27.1 yards per kick return in those seasons and also took two of those all the way to the house.

As a member of the Broncos in the 2012 postseason, Holliday became the first player to return a punt and a kickoff for a touchdown in the same playoff game. The addition of Holliday is probably bad news for former Florida UDFA Solomon Patton, Stroud tweets.

South Notes: Bucs, Jackson, Titans, Wayne

Even at 1-5, the Buccaneers are still right in the thick of it, as Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times writes. The Panthers (3-3), Saints (2-4), and the Falcons (2-5) all lost on Sunday, meaning that Tampa Bay is just two wins out of first place in the NFC South. “I watched all the games this week,” coach Lovie Smith said. “I know what happened in our division. I realize how many games we’re out of first place. We’re in it as much as anyone with our record. That’s what we’re focused on. There’s life when you take a little time off to not play a game and you end up in better position than when we started Sunday … we’re excited about that.” More from the South divisions..

  • When asked about reports that teams are interested in trading for Buccaneers wide receiver Vincent Jackson, Smith insisted that Tampa Bay doesn’t have him on the block. “We’re not trying to shop any of our players,” Smith said, according to Rick Stroud of WDAE (on Twitter).
  • The Titans‘ 2014 free agent acquisitions haven’t been contributing all that much, writes Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com. In their most recent outing against the Redskins, outside linebacker Shaun Phillips played just 44% of the defensive snaps while supposed X factor Dexter McCluster saw just six snaps on offense.
  • Reggie Wayne‘s elbow injury probably won’t force the Colts to go shopping for a wide receiver. Mike Chappell of the Indy Star (on Twitter) hears that Wayne’s injury isn’t too serious and he should only miss a game or two. He’ll have extra time to heal up as well with the club’s Week 10 bye still ahead.