Rather than placing a second-round tender on him, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reached a one-year agreement with running back LeGarrette Blount but his future with the team still looks very grim. Despite the incentive-laden contract, the Buccaneers are actively trying to trade Blount in an effort to get some return on a guy that has proven t be valuable to them in the past.
Blount had a breakout rookie season in 2011 after going undrafted and then getting cut by the Tennessee Titans. He eclipsed 1,000 yards rushing in his rookie campaign and looked poised to take over as a power running back for the Bucs. But when Tampa Bay traded up to draft Doug Martin in last year’s draft, the writing was on the wall for Blount in Tampa.
Martin’s own breakout Rookie of the Year campaign only clinched the notion that Blount was done in Tampa, but the Buccaneers werent’ sure what to do with him as he’s still a powerful young running back. Blount entered the offseason a restricted free agent but the Buccaneers worked out a deal with him rather than placing a second-round tender on him which would have meant a team signing him to a contract had to give the Bucs a second round draft pick.
Instead, the Bucs feel that a mid-round pick is going to attract more business and Jason La Canfora is reporting that’s exactly what Tampa is looking for in return for Blount.
While the Bucs would love to trade Blount, there is an outside chance that he remains with the team as his contract is set up to be both an attractive trade chip and helpful to the Bucs situation. His base salary for 2013 is $1.25 million and is worth up to $2 million in incentives. He’s also an unrestricted free agency at the end of his new deal, meaning if the Bucs can’t trade him this year, he’ll be off their hands no matter what next year.