The Buccaneers are shopping defensive tackle Gerald McCoy but aren’t receiving much trade interest, according to Michael Lombardi of The Athletic (Twitter link). McCoy didn’t show up for the first day of Buccaneers’ offseason workouts on Monday, a possible indication that he’s not involved in the club’s plans going forward.
Tampa Bay is shifting to a 3-4 defense under new coordinator Todd Bowles, and the club may have concern that McCoy won’t fit into its new scheme. “He’s not as disruptive as he was four years ago,” head coach Bruce Arians said last week. “But he’s still pretty disruptive. He’s still a good player….I got to evaluate him. I mean, guys at a certain age, it’s different. Usually, the age they get paid the most and production (doesn’t) match. We’ve got to find that out.”
McCoy is still an effective player: in 2018, ranked fourth among defensive tackles with 21 quarterback hits in 2018 and finished as the NFL’s No. 28 interior defender, per Pro Football Focus. However, he’s now entering his age-31 campaign, hasn’t played a full 16-game season since 2013, and hasn’t graded as a top-10 interior defender since 2014.
McCoy’s contract is the true barrier to a possible trade, as it’s unclear if any club would be interested in taking on his $13MM base salary for the 2019 season. He’s under contract through 2021, with cap charges north of $12MM in each of the next two years. If the Bucs trade or release McCoy, they’d clear his entire $13MM figure from their books, which is critical given the team ranks last in the NFL in available cap space (~$1.795MM).
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