How does Eric Wright's signing impact a Darrelle Revis trade? It doesn't
The Bucs, as expected, agreed to a contract restructure with cornerback Eric Wright on Tuesday. That brings to a conclusion the saga between him and the team that stretches back to last season, when he was suspended by the NFL and subsequently had his contract guarantees voided. It also ensures Wright will remain in Tampa Bay because he would otherwise have been released because of his original $7.75 million 2013 salary.
So, Wright, a starting-caliber cornerback, will be sticking around. Which means what, exactly, in relation to the Bucs and their pursuit of Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis?
The answer: Nothing.
That’s right. Locking up Wright for 2013 (it’s a one-year deal) has little to no impact on the potential trade for Revis. It does not lessen the Bucs’ desire to acquire him and it certainly does not solve all of Tampa Bay’s issues at the cornerback position. The Bucs have had intentions of renegotiating with Wright for some time now and met with him more than a week ago. In the interim, there has been no apparent change in their pursuit of Revis.
And in terms of the Wright signing being possible leverage for the Bucs in their negotiations with the Jets, don’t think the Jets are feeling any heat as a result of the Bucs’ decision to restructure Wright’s deal. If the Bucs saw keeping Wright and making a couple draft picks as the best solution to their issues in the secondary, they wouldn’t be having advanced conversations with the Jets in the first place.
They’re pursuing Revis because they want to do something grand on defense, looking for the kind of boost the draft just can’t provide – albeit at a high cost. The Jets know this and won’t be forced into accepting below-market compensation for one of the NFL’s best players.
Without a trade for Revis, the Bucs would be looking at a possible starting cornerback combination of Wright and an early-round draft pick on the other side. If they make the deal for Revis, that combination likely would be Wright and Revis (assuming their first-round pick is part of the trade with the Jets). Big difference there.
The bottom line is this: Wright is just a small piece of the puzzle. The Bucs are not more or less likely to deal for Revis with or without him.