The trade deadline will hit next Tuesday, and that means lots of trade rumors. The latest comes from Ian Rapoport, who reports that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are fielding a "ton of calls" on Vincent Jackson, and "several other Bucs players [..] simlar stars set to make big money."
That second line is interesting, and likely refers to Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David -- the two best players the Bucs have. There's basically no chance the Bucs trade either player: they're too good, and too important to the team's scheme. But there are a few other players the team could move before Tuesday.
Players the Bucs will want to trade
RB Doug Martin - Martin has been a disappointment since the start of last season, and he's not a perfect fit for this zone-based blocking scheme. The Bucs love Charles Sims and have given Bobby Rainey a significant amount of carries, too. Neither one is an ideal replacement, but Martin hasn't been productive for two years and doesn't look like the same back he used to be. If they can get a solid, mid-round pick for him, they may decide to move on and go with Sims (who can return week 9) and Rainey the rest of the way.
S Dashon Goldson - Like Martin, Goldson has been a disappointment since arriving in Tampa. He struggled with coverage breakdowns last year, and he hasn't been the difference maker the Bucs expected. He has looked better this season, but he hasn't made muich of an impact either. There's certainly a dropoff to Major Wright, but if they can get his guaranteed salary for this year and partially guaranteed salary for next year off the books, they can spend that elsewhere -- and perhaps use the draft pick they get for him on a replacement.
Players the Bucs would trade for a good price
WR Vincent Jackson - We've talked about Jackson before, with Leo arguing they should trade him. He's the team's best weapon, but age and a massive salary represent a potential problem. If the Bucs do trade him, they would only do so for the right price. Personally, I would expect at least a third-round pick for any deal to get done. The Bucs could simply keep paying Vincent Jackson and have a solid number one receiver for the next couple of years, even if he's started his decline.
T Demar Dotson - The best offensive lineman the Bucs have, he's only just turned 29 and should be the team's starting left tackle for at least the next two years. His contract runs out after the 2016 season, though, and he may be looking for a solid payday given the fact that he's making less than $2 million per year, even though he's one of the best right tackles in the NFL. Trading him would really hurt the Bucs' offensive line, and this won't happen unless the team gets a really good
LB Mason Foster - Foster's in an odd position. He's a solid middle linebacker overall, but he's struggled to adapt to the Tampa 2 this season. He's also in the final year of his contract, which means the Bucs are going to have to pony up some cash if they want to keep him -- not top-end money, but still a decent chunk of change. If they don't want to extend his contract, they'll want to get what they can on the open market right now. If they do want to keep him, only a good offer will get them to move him.
Players who won't be traded, no matter what
LB Lavonte David and DT Gerald McCoy. Both of these players are set for massive paydays, with McCoy in the final year in his contract and David having one year left. But these two players are the best at their position, and their positions are the two most important on Lovie Smith's defense. The Bucs will not let either player leave this team, unless they can get a Hershel Walker deal -- and even then they might say no.