Breaking: Buccaneers Closing In On Deal To Sign $7 Million 4-Time Pro Bowl RB As Free Agent

Breaking: Buccaneers Closing In On Deal To Sign $7 Million 4-Time Pro Bowl RB As Free Agent

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ rushing issues remain unresolved despite the presence of Rachaad White and Bucky Irving as a duo.

Signing free agent and four-time Pro Bowler Dalvin Cook might provide a needed boost to the backfield.According to Matt Holder of Bleacher Report, the Buccaneers should consider adding a short-yardage running back.

“Rachaad White had a good season last fall but isn’t great at creating yards after contact,” Holder stated. “The Buccaneers used a fourth-round pick on Bucky Irving, but Irving’s sub-200-pound frame suggests he will struggle in short-yardage situations at the next level.” So, adding a bruiser to the backfield would be a sensible investment for Tampa Bay.

Cook fits the bill amid his career average of 4.6 yards per carry. A four-time 1,000-yard rusher, Cook could still make a difference at age 28 though his best years are arguably behind him.

Buccaneers Could Find a Steal in Dalvin Cook

Cook led the Minnesota Vikings offense with 1,173 yards and eight touchdowns in 2022 before joining the New York Jets. Despite injuries and a backup role behind Breece Hall, he only gained 214 yards on 67 runs with the Jets.

Cook averaged a career-low 3.2 yards per rush last season, but he had never been below 4.4 yards per attempt prior to that. Minnesota’s offensive line has outperformed the Jets in Pro Football Focus rankings for the past two years.

The Vikings parted ways with Cook in 2023 due to contract size and salary cap issues. Cook signed a one-year, $7 million contract with the Jets after spending five years and $63 million with the Vikings.

After multiple career lows, a team such as the Buccaneers could sign Cook for a minimal deal this year. The Buccaneers have $8.68 million in salary cap space to work with.

Dalvin Cook: ‘Tools Are Still Here’

Despite the recent dip, Cook believes he can relive his glory days.

In April, Cook told KPRC 2’s Aaron Wilson, “I have it all.” “The tools are still around. I didn’t really get any reps last year. So the legs are fresh, and the résumé speaks for itself. I am still Dalvin Cook. I am still that guy. I dislike bragging about myself. I just enjoy going out there, putting on my helmet, and lining up on the grass.”

Cook hasn’t let not getting signed bother him either.

“Yeah, you always have to be prepared for the opportunity,” Cook replied. “I’m a veteran in the league. I understand what it takes to succeed in this league. I know who Dalvin Cook is, and I know how I want to perform and what I want to accomplish. As you mentioned, remain prepared so you don’t have to get prepared.”

Cook had a particularly tight turnaround for the 2023 season because he did not sign with the Jets until August 2023. The Jets already had Hall returning from an ACL tear. Cook was released by the Jets and joined the Baltimore Ravens in time for the postseason, but he played minimally.

“I think last year was really like a learning curve for me,” Cook said. ” I got kind of itchy. At the time it was coming. the season. It was where I wanted to go and now it’s about the opportunities are going to come.”

“It’s about what are you going to do with it. For me, patience is the key so let’s just stay ready and stay confident it’s going to explode,” Cook added.

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