The Bucs aren’t trading for Jalen Ramsey. I don’t think anyone is because I don’t think the Jaguars are going to let him go, at least not now. But what they should do is trade for Patrick Peterson from the Arizona Cardinals.
Peterson potentially changes everything for this team. He steps into the most important missing spot in their defense, he’s a proven player who would now be a veteran presence in the locker room, he allows you to continue to be aggressive in your coverage shells, and he can allow the other players to play roles that are more suited to their talent level.
All sounds great, right? So where’s the catch.
Well, there are two catches.
Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson – Photo by: Getty Images
One, it would likely cost a first-round pick to get him, but here’s my counter to that. If you look at this Bucs team right now, their two biggest weaknesses are cornerback and the future offensive line. But their most pressing need is corner.
If we believe that to be the case, it doesn’t matter how many picks general manager Jason Licht used on cornerback last year, there’s a chance he’ll use their top pick on one again in 2020. And if you’re doing that, why not use that first-round pick on a guy who is already proven? The price is well worth it.
It’s like that Family Guy skit where Peter and Lois go in to claim a free boat and the salesman sales, “You can have the boat or the mystery box.” Lois, usually the voice of reason on the show, says that they’ll take the boat, of course. But Peter stops her and says, “A boat’s a boat, but the mystery box could be anything … it could even be a boat!”
The best first-round pick Licht could possibly make at corner would be as good as what Peterson has already proven he is. Take the boat. Got get Peterson.
The other problem is that Peterson’s contract is has two years left and he is set to make a base salary of $11 million this season and $12.05 million in 2020. However, Peterson is currently under suspension for six games for violating the NFL’s performance-enhancing drug policy. The six-game suspension costs Peterson $3,882,352 in lost wages, which brings his cap hit this year to around $8 million.
Plus, in looking to the future, if the team does trade for Peterson, they’ll likely move on from Hargreaves, who is scheduled to get $9 million as part of his fifth-year contract option. That money could go to Peterson instead.
Not to mention the relationship Peterson has with both head coach Bruce Arians and defensive coordinator Todd Bowles when they were all in Arizona. Peterson made All-Pro once with the Cardinals under Bowles, and was a Pro Bowler for every year of Arians’ tenure.
I think it’s a win-win. It’s worth the price and it’s exactly what they need. If Peterson really isn’t happy in Arizona, which there are rumors that he isn’t due to the rebuild of the team and the fact that the team did not restructure his deal before his suspension, and if all it takes is a first round pick, I’d do it without hesitation – if Tampa Bay can get him for a second-round pick, I’d be at the Cardinals facility to pick him up the minute his suspension is up.
Think about it: Peterson comes to the team after Week 6, Jason Pierre-Paul returns after Week 8.
Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: email@example.com
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