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Projected Trade With $72 Million Pro Bowl Wide Receiver to Buccaneers

The veteran has been unhappy with his playing time on his current team.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were expected to field one of the top offenses in the NFL this season. Injuries along the offensive line and to multiple starting wide receivers have limited quarterback Tom Brady's ability to lead the unit downfield. The Buccaneers have scored just three offensive touchdowns in three games.

READ MORE: Buccaneers urged to sign star wide receiver to bolster offense

Star wide receiver Mike Evans will return in week 4 after completing his suspension but there is still uncertainty around the availability of Chris Godwin and Julio Jones. It doesn't help that Russell Gage and Breshad Perriman were noticeably less than 100% in Tampa Bay's home loss to the Green Bay Packers.

While the Buccaneers signed veteran Cole Beasley, who caught 3 passes for 12 yards against the Packers, it feels like they need a more explosive addition. One player who might be available is New York Giants wide receiver, Kenny Golladay. After playing just two snaps against the Carolina Panthers, ESPN's Jeremy Fowler believes Golladay is done in New York.

“The Kenny Golladay situation in New York is far from over,” Fowler wrote last week. "When a receiver with a $21.15 million cap hit plays two snaps on Sunday, there’s no coming back from that. This is the classic case of a new regime — GM Joe Schoen, coach Brian Daboll — taking over a contract it wouldn’t have done itself. And when that’s the case, teams look for exit strategies. The Giants didn’t do anything with Golladay’s contract in the preseason because the guarantees hamstrung them. His $13 million salary and $4.5 million roster bonus are locked in. Zero wiggle room.

“But a similar situation unfolded in the New York area a few years ago, with the Jets and Le’Veon Bell. GM Joe Douglas, who didn’t do the Bell deal, decided the Jets were better off paying Bell his $13 million in guarantees to go away, first trying to trade him before releasing him," Fowler continued. "The difference is Golladay, as an accomplished wide receiver with red zone scoring potential, could have some trade value if the Giants agree to cover most of his salary. Something to watch, because Golladay can’t be satisfied with his role.”

Golladay was vocal about his unhappiness in his current role following New York's win against Carolina last weekend. He's taking the high road for now but it's clear this isn't how he expected the season to begin under a new regime.

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The problem is that Illinois native still has a lot of money remaining on his deal. He has a $21.150 million cap hit this season and has two additional years left on his contract moving forward. Considering Tampa Bay's current cap situation, the Buccaneers would need New York to over a majority of Golladay's salary to acquire him.

That is a possibility considering that New York is making it clear that they don't see a future with Golladay on the roster. Depending on how this situation continues to shake out, Tampa Bay might be able to buy low on the former Pro Bowl receiver.

Golladay recorded back-to-back 1,000+ yard receiving seasons in 2018-19 while with the Detroit Lions. His production dipped off over the past two years as he failed to break 550+ yards. In his first season with the Giants in 2021, Golladay caught 37 passes for 521 yards and zero touchdowns in 14 games.

For his career, Golladay has totaled 222 catches for 3,611 yards with 21 touchdowns over six seasons. 15 of those scores came during 2018 and 2019.

READ MORE: Tom Brady sends subtle message to team following first loss of the season

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