Bucs Rumored To Be In The Mix For Jets Darron Lee. Should They Be?


It was recently reported by Benjamin Allbright that the Buccaneers, Browns, and Broncos are all rumored to be interested in a trade for Jets ILB Darron Lee. The Jets reportedly are seeking a 3rd round pick in return for Lee. Interested teams though are only willing to give a 5th per the report.

Are The Bucs Serious Contenders?

Should the Bucs be in the conversation though? The snap reaction would be a resounding yes. Especially given his familiarity with DC Todd Bowles defensive scheme. A deeper look into Lee though could prove otherwise.

In 2017, Lee had his best season where he collected 94 combined tackles, 3 sacks, 2 FF, and 3 PD. Despite a 72.4 grading by PFF, he has overall underperformed in New York. To cap it off he was suspended for 4 games to end the 2018 season for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse. Not a good look for a team that just signed C.J. Mosley.

The 4th year of his rookie deal will have a cap hit of $3.16 million. Currently Tampa Bay has $3.21 million in cap space. Given that they will need to clear an additional $7 million to sign their 2019 draft picks, it makes trade for Lee that much more complicated. Theoretically if they traded away their 5th pick for him, they would still need about $9.6 million total to sign their draft picks. Even though Lee’s 2019 salary isn’t burdensome in general, it’s a tough move for a cap strapped Tampa Bay.

Simply put, when every aspect of a Lee trade is considered, he isn’t an appealing prospect. If the Bucs want to further address their linebacker unit, they would be better off filling that need through the draft. As there are simply too many flags for Tampa Bay to give Lee any serious consideration.