Rapoport on Buccaneers and the Trade Deadline, “There May Be Some Tweaks, But No Major Changes Are Expected”

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NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport doesn’t expect the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to make any big moves ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline. This with the Bucs currently on a three-game losing streak and dropping five of the last six games.

Depth Issues 

The Buccaneers do have some depth issues at key positions, including outside linebacker after Shaq Barrett was placed on season ending injured reserve. The team is currently 31st in rushing, a stat that points to a patchwork offensive line. Then there’s the defensive backfield. Injuries to Carlton Davis, Sean Murphy-Bunting, Antoine Winfield Jr and others have greatly diminished the corps effectiveness. Weirdly, Rapoport in another report listed Murphy-Bunting in the “Sellers” category.

“A starter during his first three seasons. Murphy-Bunting has seen his role diminish in 2022 and has missed the past two games with a quad injury, though he’s believed to be close to healthy now. Murphy-Bunting’s talent, experience (31 NFL starts), age (25) and cheap rookie contract (due about $1.41 million for the rest of 2022) make him a logical target and Tampa Bay will have suitors if it’s willing to move him.”

The rub here is, the Buccaneers aren’t very good at any one thing. If this team fancies itself as a legitimate playoff and Super Bowl contender they need to make a move. But to do so you’d have to give up draft capital, a lot of it. Adding a pass rusher or defensive back makes sense for all the reasons listed previously. But either of those would have to be an impact player. That of course will cost more draft capital going the other way. With the expected departure of quarterback Tom Brady sooner than later the team needs to either be all in or start planning for the future. Depending on what the team does or doesn’t do today by 4pm ET will give us the answer to this question.

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