With new Bucs coach Lovie Smith presumably bringing the Tampa Two back to the place where it was born, one of the first orders of offseason business could be to send last year’s top offseason acquisition packing.
Darrelle Revis, a man-to-man coverage specialist who reportedly didn’t like being used in zone coverage this past season, doesn’t fit the traditional duties of a cornerback in the Tampa Two. Given a contract that pays him $16 million per year with no guaranteed money or frills that would trigger a cap hit, the Bucs could walk away from Revis and save $16 million in both cash and cap space for 2014.
There’s another reason to dump Revis sooner than later. The Buccaneers could avoid upgrading the final piece of the trade puzzle from a top-10 fourth-round pick in 2014 to a top-10 third-round pick.
Based on the specific timing of the trigger for the upgraded pick, the Bucs may have to choose between dumping Revis and keeping the third-rounder or trying to trade his $16 million-per-year contract after the fourth-round pick increases by one round.
While Smith and his eventual defensive coordinator may decide to make Smith’s preferred defense fit Revis, it could make more sense to cut the cord and devote the cash to a player like soon-to-be-free-agent Bears cornerback Peanut Tillman.