Tampa Bay Buccaneers
With Revis, time was right for Bucs to be bold
Once again, we are reminded that timing is crucial in sports.
Thirteen years after trading for wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson to energize a drab attack, the Bucs dealt for cornerback Darrelle Revis — viewed as a difference-maker for a pass defense that was ravaged in 2012.
In each case, the Glazer family signed off on a blockbuster move because ownership and management believed the Bucs have developed enough of a nucleus to go deep into the postseason.
“I think we made tremendous strides last year on the football field and I think we've done a good job of accumulating talent,'' said general manager Mark Dominik, noting Tampa Bay's locker room is now dotted with eight players who have made the Pro Bowl. “That's where we're at as a team.''
With most of their key starters between the ages of 25 and 30, the Bucs viewed the 27-year-old Revis as a unique player just entering his prime.
“We have good players,'' said coach Greg Schiano, who went 7-9 in his first season on the Bucs sideline. “Darrelle Revis is going to come here and join a bunch of good players and good people. We have one goal — to win championships. That's it. That's why we're here.''
Revis said the emerging talent on Tampa Bay's roster played an integral role in his willingness to sign off on a long-term deal.
“It was a great move on my part to be part of this organization,'' Revis said Monday. “We have a lot of talent. I know a number of these guys. We were the No. 1 rush defense last year, and now we're going to change the passing part. I think we were a playoff team before the trade. I'm just adding a piece. We're going to make a lot of noise … don't worry about that.''
After overseeing a massive rebuilding plan in 2009 and averaging six wins per season, Dominik said the dynamics have changed in his fifth year as general manager.
“The time was right,'' Dominik said. “You've got to win in this league. We want to be back in the playoffs. We want to win championships. This offseason, our most glaring need was the secondary. Darrelle will be 28 during the season, and that's still a young cornerback in my mind. We have an elite player just hitting his stride.''