Proposed Trade Sends Bucs a $12 Million Former Pro Bowl Star Playmaker

Tom Brady

Getty The Buccaneers could be a potential landing spot for a new playmaker.

Once thought to be Super Bowl contenders, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have needs to address on both offense and defense. The Bucs would be wise to fix their lack of a rushing attack ahead of the November 1st NFL trade deadline, especially given the low asking price for running backs not named Christian McCaffrey.

Tampa Bay is averaging just 64.4 rushing yards per game, by far the lowest in the NFL. Enter Browns playmaker Kareem Hunt who The Washington Post’s NFL insider Jason La Canfora believes is a candidate to be moved. One general manager labeled Hunt as the “best back on the market.”

“A few general managers have ruminated on the potential for a Kareem Hunt deal,” La Canfora wrote on October 25, 2022. “The Cleveland Browns are reeling; with Nick Chubb rolling, Hunt sees only a fraction of the action in their backfield that he might elsewhere, and perhaps the Browns could get both a future pick and a veteran depth piece to help fill their massive void at defensive tackle if they dealt the 27-year-old.

“’Hunt would be the best back on the market, and it’s not even close,’ said one GM who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not allowed to discuss other teams’ rosters. ‘Don’t they have like four backs on their roster, anyway? That defense needs help.’”

What Would a Trade for Hunt Cost the Bucs?

It is hard to imagine the Browns commanding much more than a future day-three draft pick for Hunt. La Canfora estimates that Cleveland would expect a “future pick and a veteran depth piece” for the running back. Hunt signed a two-year, $12 million contract extension in 2020 and will be a free agent this offseason.

The running back seeking a new lucrative long-term deal likely does not help his trade value. Tampa Bay could offer a mid-to-late round draft selection and a veteran like Scotty Miller for Hunt.

Assuming the Browns have a reasonable asking price, trading for Hunt makes a lot of sense for the Bucs as the perfect compliment to Leonard Fournette. Through the first seven games, Hunt has 66 carries for 263 yards and three touchdowns. The playmaker is extremely effective in the passing attack also adding 15 receptions for 87 yards and a receiving TD.

Hunt is just two seasons removed from posting 198 carries for 841 rushing yards and six touchdowns. The star also added 38 catches for 304 yards and five receiving TDs in 2020.

The Bucs Are Missing a Complimentary RB to Pair With Fournette

The Buccaneers appear to be missing the complimentary back the team had in recent seasons with Ronald Jones. Hunt along with Nick Chubb have formed one of the most potent rushing attacks in the league averaging 163.6 yards per contest, the third most in the NFL.

Fournette has not topped the 100 rushing yards mark since Week 1 in the team’s victory over the Cowboys. The Bucs rusher is averaging just 3.5 yards per carry, his lowest number since 2018. Tampa Bay drafted running back Rachaad White in the third round, but the rookie has yet to make a consistent impact.

White has been more effective in the passing game notching 14 receptions for 104 yards through the first seven games. The rookie has 26 carries for 71 rushing yards and one touchdown while averaging a dismal 2.7 yards per carry.