The first afternoon at the lovefest of numbers, stopwatches, and physical specimen, where GM’s, scouts, and coaches in attendance drool all over the chance to draft a player that runs a 40 in 4.3 and jumps out the RCA Dome, the event also know as the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, leaked out at least one trade possiblity inked with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Coupled with Joey Galloway not getting any younger and an absolute desire for a tall, sure-handed red zone target for QB Jeff Garcia, Tampa may’ve found it’s answer with a playmaker in the AFC West, as the Bucs are rumored to be led to chatting with the Denver Broncos about a deal that would net them disgruntled wideout Javon Walker.
No one associated with either organization or Walker would finalize the reports, but I believe there is plenty of truth, just enough to be said about this new headline coming from Jon Gruden’s club talking trade with a team that has two #1 WR’s (Brandon Marshall). The real questions to ask: Is Javon Walker more hype than talent and is he worth whatever Tampa is offering to give up for him? It seems like he has done more pouting than contributing lately. More time on the bench than more time in the end zone.
The Bucs are on the search this offseason for playmakers, and Walker is looking to get away from the Broncos, for whom he played in just eight games last year, catching 26 passes for 287 yards and no touchdowns.
Gruden’s gang could offer draft picks for Walker, who is 29 and spent most of last year nursing a knee problem, but the Broncos are believed to be looking for a productive defensive tackle, an area where Tampa Bay is not looking so strong itself.
Look for a trade involving Walker to be discussed throughout the week, bursting out with speculation and rumors until it’s either put to rest or a deal is completed. Expect Tampa to go as high as a third round pick and a back-up DT at best because Walker is coming off of a major injury. I think Denver can find a better suitor elsewhere and get more in return than what Tampa will be able to offer in exchange for the former Florida State Seminole standout.
I’ll go as far as this by saying it may appear that Denver just might be finding out what Green Bay may’ve knew all along – #4 (Brett Favre) is what made Javon Walker look so good. Walker’s success so far looks to be only as good as what the “gunslinger” made it out to be and his recent knee injury make this an already risky move for both teams in the early stages of talking. In Tampa’s case, they are getting a player that participated in just eight contests in ’07, while in Denver’s case, they may not get enough in return to even the make the deal worth entertaining. Walker’s ability when he’s on the field is what makes this a low-risk, high-reward choice for Tampa, a move that has the chance to pay off or disappoint pending on the health of Javon. Denver would do themselves a favor by pulling the trigger and getting a draft pick along with a DT to help fill a need because Brandon Marshall is their true #1 pass catcher. Both teams could end up on the winning side of this deal and I would like to see it happen because Tampa has to replace Galloway sooner rather than later.