The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have added an explosive playmaker and one of the best pure athletes in the NFL by trading for speedy running back Jeffery Demps. Demps was a member of the New England Patriots, who took LeGarrette Blount as compensation for the former Gator, and sent the Buccaneers a 7th round pick as well.
Demps has Olympic-level speed, and even has a silver medal from the 2012 London Olympics as a member of the United States’ relay team. He averaged 7 yards per touch from scrimmage at the University of Florida, and also averaged almost 30 yards per kick return. He scored 25 career touchdowns at Florida, and was a key member of the dynamic offenses the Gators featured under Urban Meyer.
Here is the tweet confirming the news:
Bucs traded RB LeGarrette Blount to Patriots for RB Jeff Demps and a 7th-round pick, as @tomecurran reported.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 27, 2013
Demps has openly stated that he wants to continue to pursue his track career while playing football, and NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport stated on air during NFLN’s draft coverage that the Buccaneers are willing to allow Demps to compete in track events while under contract with the Buccaneers.
This trade also gives the Buccaneers a seventh round pick, adding another pick to add potential depth heading into next season.
The trade does signal the end of the LeGarrette Blount era in Tampa Bay. Blount was brought in despite his checkered past, and quickly found himself with the weight of a struggling offense on his shoulders. He played fairly well, putting up decent yardage and outperforming his undrafted status. But under Greg Schiano, Blount dropped down the depth chart, as his starting position was overtaken by Doug Martin, and Blount lacked the skills to specialize as a third down back or short yardage back.
It was a foregone conclusion that the Buccaneers would move on from Blount, and I believe this is the best kind of deal for the Bucs. Demps is a dynamic athlete who can add a lot to the special teams, and an extra draft pick brings cost-controlled depth for the team to build upon.