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NFL Draft Rumors: Buccaneers to talk trade right until they pick Jameis Winston

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Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to select Jameis Winston with the number one pick tomorrow. That's about as big of a certainty in the draft as anything since Andrew Luck going number one overall to the Indianapolis Colts -- which was announced several days before the draft, something the Bucs have refused to do so far.

In part because the Tampa Bay Buccaneers continue to stoke trade rumors. And not just via unconfirmed, anonymous reports -- by going on the record and talking about all the teams that want this pick. Today, general manager Jason Licht told ESPN's Ed Werder that "trade inquiries [are] on the rise."

As I wrote yesterday, there's no downside to doing this for the Buccaneers. If someone comes in with a ridiculous offer, no matter how unlikely, they can still accept it. There's no advantage to announcing the pick early -- getting contract negotiations started early doesn't help the team in any way, as those negotiations are largely a formality and the draft pick won't be allowed in the building any sooner.

So why not try to get the bidding to go higher? Everyone and everything has a price in the NFL, and it does fit an earlier report that the team still has doubts on Winston -- but that they'll take him anywa. And if the Bucs can get a ludicrous return on their pick, they'll probably take it. But the odds of actually getting that ludicrous return are exceedingly tiny, so expect Winston to be the pick tomorrow.