The rumors are heating up connecting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to potential new quarterback options. After a recent social media scrub removing any Cardinals references, there is speculation that Pro Bowl quarterback Kyler Murray could be unhappy heading into the final year of his rookie contract.
Murray has yet to comment on if there is any significance to the social media remodel but also has not refuted the speculation that he is unhappy. Fox Sports has created odds for Murray’s next team, and the Buccaneers lead the pack at +500. Fox Bet commercial manager Jacob Blangsted-Barnor explained why the Bucs are the favorite as of February 7.
“Tampa Bay has a tight window to capitalize off the Super Bowl-caliber pieces that surrounded a now-retired Tom Brady, which is why Tampa springs to mind immediately as a team that will be looking for a quarterback,” Blangsted-Barnor explained. “If Kyler leaves Arizona, it’s not going to be for a team that doesn’t have weapons. The Bucs have weapons, so this is a good potential landing spot for him.”
The other top contenders include the Broncos +600, playing baseball +600, Packers +700 and Steelers +900. Tampa Bay’s lone quarterback on the current roster is Kyle Trask who has yet to take an NFL snap.
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The Buccaneers Would Have to Trade for Murray to Have a Realistic Chance at the QB
Despite being the favorite in the Fox Sports odds, Murray is one of the longer shots for the Bucs to land of the potential quarterback options. Technically, Murray has one year remaining on his current deal, but the Cardinals are not going to allow their franchise quarterback to walk in free agency, even if it turns out he is disgruntled. Arizona has the franchise tag at their disposal to allow them to retain Murray in 2023 and beyond if an extension is not signed.
The Bucs need two things to happen to have a chance at the star quarterback with the first being Murray would need to push his way out of Arizona. Tampa Bay would also need to be willing to offer a premium trade package for Murray as the Cardinals will have plenty of suitors prompting an eventual bidding war between the Buccaneers and other interested teams.
Murray’s Silence Is ‘Becoming Deafening,’ Says Insider
Murray has not publicly said there is anything to his peculiar social media activity just one day after the Pro Bowl. Heavy previously detailed Bucs star receiver Mike Evans’ public praise of Murray which comes with the interesting timing of Tampa needing a new QB1. Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio noted that the quarterback’s “complete silence” is telling.
“We’ve tried to find out what’s going on both from the team and from Murray’s camp,” Florio noted on February 8. “The complete silence in response to all efforts to get to the truth is becoming deafening.
“It’s no accident. The changing of social-media profiles requires affirmative effort. It’s not like a hub cap coming off a wheel. Murray went in and made the changes.
“He did it one day after the Pro Bowl, after days spent around players from other teams. Days spent hearing about how it is in other organizations. Days spent being recruited — in jest or seriously or somewhere in between — by older players from other teams.”
As the former Cardinals coach, Bruce Arians still has plenty of connections to the Arizona franchise. Until Murray signs a long-term contract extension, the rumors surrounding the quarterback and the Buccaneers are likely to continue swirling. Time will tell if there is any truth to the latest speculation.