Making Sense of the Latest Rumors: Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Trade Negotiations for Darrelle Revis


Feb 21, 2013; Indianapolis, IN, USA; New York Jets general manager John Idzik speaks at a press conference during the 2013 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

By this point, you’ve probably heard it all about the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New York Jets, and Darrelle Revis as it pertains to trade rumors for the All-Pro cornerback. The rumors started weeks ago when Tampa Bay emerged as seemingly the only true fit as a trade partner for New York. Since the initial reports, we’ve read so many different things from so many different sources, many of which step on the prior reports heels.

Today for instance. Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reported that the Bucs aren’t so sure they are willing to give up the 13th overall pick this year as part of a compensation package for Revis. However, in an article on ProFootballTalk, posted just 6 minutes prior to the Stroud story, PFT says multiple sources tell them the Buccaneers are absolutely willing to part ways with that 13th pick.

So what should we believe? The short answer is no one. The long answer is all of it.

Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

What I mean by that is, do not believe one single source. But instead, take everything you hear and try to make your own rationalizations out of all of it.

The fact is, every single one of these reports has someone behind it. Neither Rick Stroud, nor Mike Florio, nor any other reporter is willing to put themselves out there on something they can’t source. It’s Journalism 101. In order to cover your own behind, make sure your opinions stay away and anything you report as fact has someone else’s name on it. And while all of these are unnamed, that doesn’t mean they are lies.

Each piece of information we are getting is coming from one of three places. Those being the Buccaneer organization, the Jet organization, or Revis’ agents. The important note about this is that every one of those parties has an agenda. It’s a lot like a poker game. Everyone has a hand, no one else can see that hand, yet they are all actively speaking to one another.

In poker you make bets to gain information. In football, you exploit the media and the public’s thirst for knowledge as a way of posturing. That is exactly what’s happening. We all need to know the latest. We want more, we want more. But the fact remains, nothing has changed aside from the amount of information each party is transmitting to one another.

The Bucs have a price, the Jets have a price, and the Revis camp has a price. Either they all get what they want (or close) or else nothing gets done. But you can’t come out and say your actual price. Just like you have to control that eye twitch when your dealt pocket aces. So they use the media the make their move. They give out pieces of information, some of which are true, some of which are “bluffs”, but all are important, and all have meaning.

So take it all in. Because while everything we’re hearing may not all be true, it is certainly all relevant.