With the NFL trading deadline just days away, the Buccaneers traded defensive end Gaines Adams to Chicago for a second-round draft pick on Friday night. Adams, the fourth overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, was labeled a bust by some, but was really an underachiever that was never able to become a physical pass-rushing force that could consistently get to the quarterback.
In 37 regular season games, Adams, the team's starting right defensive end, recorded 13.5 sacks, but had shown little improvement over the past year – even in a defensive end-friendly scheme like the one Tampa Bay is deploying right now. Adams also recorded a sack against the New York Giants in the Bucs' home playoff game in 2007.
With 0-5 Tampa Bay in full-fledged rebuilding mode, Bucs general manager Mark Dominik recently told Pewter Report that he is seeking more picks for the 2010 NFL Draft. Dominik made a deal with his mentor, Chicago G.M. Jerry Angelo, to help accomplish that goal.
Adams recorded two interceptions in 2008, including one he returned 45 yards for a touchdown at Chicago in Tampa Bay's 24-21 overtime win. While he could never develop into a dominant pass rusher with the Buccaneers, Adams will now be under the tutelage of Rod Marinelli, the Bears defensive line coach and one of the best D-line coaches in the NFL.
By trading Adams, the Bucs take an $11 million salary cap hit this year. The Bucs save $4 million on the 2010 cap, but only if there is a salary cap then – right now, 2010 is scheduled to be an uncapped year in the NFL. Regardless, Tampa Bay could afford to part ways with Adams, evidenced by the fact that the team has over $30 million in salary cap room.
The Bucs will lean on defensive ends Stylez G. White and Tim Crowder to help fill the void left by Adams at right defensive end. White still is looking for his first sack of the season, but leads the team in quarterback pressures.
The Bucs' 2007 draft class takes another huge hit with the admission that a top 4 pick like Adams is not a franchise-type player. The departure of Adams and guard Arron Sears, a second-round pick from 2007 that is on the reserve/did not report list due to personal problems, leaves only safety Sabby Piscitelli (second round), linebacker Quincy Black (third round), free safety Tanard Jackson (fourth round) and linebacker Adam Hayward (sixth round) from that draft class.
The Buccaneers now have 10 selections in the 2010 NFL Draft:
Round 1 – Buccaneers Round 2 – Buccaneers Round 2 – Bears Round 3 – Buccaneers Round 4 – Buccaneers Round 5 – Patriots (Alex Smith trade) Round 5 or 6 – Jaguars (conditional pick for Luke McCown – not official) Round 6 – Buccaneers Round 7 – Buccaneers Round 7 – Ravens (Marques Douglas trade)
(Tampa Bay's fifth-round pick in 2010 belongs to Cleveland for the second part of the Kellen Winslow trade)
The Buccaneers are expected to try to deal more players by Tuesday at 4:00 p.m., which is the NFL trading deadline. Among the players that could be on the trading block because of their experience and potential trade value, include wide receivers Antonio Bryant and Michael Clayton and middle linebacker linebacker Barrett Ruud.