Bucs unlikely to exercise option on Clayborn, but won’t be trading him

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As the deadline for exercising the fifth-year option of players picked in the first round of the 2011 draft approaches, a recent first-round pick in Tampa Bay is inching closer toward being thrown overboard.

Per a league source, it’s doubtful that the Buccaneers will pick up the fifth-year option on defensive end Adrian Clayborn.

The 20th overall pick that year, Clayborn has 35 career regular-season appearances and starts.  In 2013, he started every game, notching 5.5 sacks.  Clayborn had 7.5 sacks as a rookie.

While the Bucs likely won’t pick up Clayborn’s option, the source says they also have no intention of trading him to a team that perhaps would want to exercise the option.  Or to trade him at any point after the May 3 deadline for picking up the option.

Thus, if Clayborn stays in Tampa beyond 2014, it’ll happen under a contract that isn’t driven by a first-year salary of $6.9 million, which is the amount of the option the Bucs likely won’t be exercising.

15 responses to “Bucs unlikely to exercise option on Clayborn, but won’t be trading him

  1. $6.9MM is too much to commit to if you aren’t sold on the player, not really much of a choice. I would like to know exactly what they think of the player and to confirm that if they could do it all over again then naturally they would have picked somebody else that is worth using the option on right?

  2. Such a disappointment. He had flashes but injuries slowed him down. Now with Michael Johnson probably on his way out. The bucs weren’t far in that draft from picking studs for the D Line like Watt, Kerrigan, Quinn, Wilkerson and Cameron Jordan.

    Instead they drafted Clayborn and Bowers….

  3. As an Iowa fan and a Buc fan. This saddens me. I hope Clay comes out n tears it up since he finally has a REAL NFL coach using his talents. I think he’ll strive under Lovie. He’s healthy and finally has somebody to play across from him. And doesn’t have schiano standing him up which was rediculous. I think hell at least match his Rookie year sack total if not up it. Fingers crossed anyways.

  4. I think Clayborn has been a solid, but not special NFL player. Why not try to sign him to a 3 year deal that is appropriate to his production? Clearly, he is not worth $6.9 million, but it’s not like he doesn’t have value. He has a good motor and is good enough that he would certainly bring something of value to any team’s defensive line rotation.

    As a Bucs fan, I am growing increasingly concerned by the amount of home grown players the Bucs are replacing via free agency. I am certainly not a salary cap expert, but I would be interested to know how our cap is projected two to four years from now. The Bucs are a long way away from competing for a Super Bowl…so why are they building through free agency, as opposed to trying to stockpile picks and build through the draft?

  5. Mark Dominick was obsessed with picking football captains (hence, Clayborn, even though he was always gonna be a 7 sack guy), & Bowers was supposed to go #1 overall, so that shiny diamond entranced Dom too. Weird how a guy runs into some trouble, & he’s persona non grata (Robert Quinn, Greg Hardy), yet he takes a flyer on Mike Williams, AND hands him a massive new contract (& like Dom, is no longer with the team). S.M.H.

  6. Agree with ashevillebucs; Clayborn has been a very solid player, and he’s the kind of guy who’s going to be a really solid #2 DE. He’s not going to get you 15 sacks a year, but he gets into the backfield, plays the run well, plays really hard, and is just disruptive enough to have plenty of value to an NFL team. Now, he’s a half-step slow and seems to just barely miss on a couple sacks a game, but he’s at least getting hurries and causing chaos.

    That being said, $6.9 million is a heck of a lot to pay for a guy who’s almost getting to the QB a lot. I’d love him to stay in Tampa as I like the way he plays, but he’s going to have to accept he’s a second-tier (at best) guy on that line and make less than that first-rounder rookie deal he’s playing on.

  7. Not surprised by this at all. I expect to see Clayborn improve this season, particularly due to him having a full off season coming off his knee injury in 2012. It clearly hampered him in the first part of last season and it is no surprise that he improved towards the end of the season.

    He now has Johnson across from him and McCoy is being freed up to play the 3-tech. He should see a lot of 1 on 1s this season and if he makes the most of his opportunities, there’s no reason he won’t be getting a raise on his second contract.

  8. Basically this gives Clayborn 1 year to prove his worth to the Bucs, or any NFL team.
    I’m not convinced he a #1 DE, but can add value as a backup with a salary to match.

  9. Adrian is welcome to come up to Seattle. I was born in Iowa and love the hawkeyes by birth and have been in Seattle since ’87 so it’s a perfect fit for me. We will send the yucks a fourth rounder and BJ Daniels! Yuck, yuck, yuck!!!

  10. I thought Johnson and Clayborn were both RDEs? Clayborn can only play the right because of that weird disease he has, so won’t he be backing up Johnson?

    I could be wrong, I haven’t been paying a lot of attention this offseason.

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