Peter King goes behind the scenes to talk about how the Darrelle Revis trade was completed yesterday.
"If the physical doesn't go right, we're sending him home,'' coach Greg Schiano told GM Mark Dominik Sunday morning. Both men agreed on that.
So two Bucs doctors, including head team orthopedist John Zvijac and director of sports medicine Todd Toriscelli, pored over recent MRI results on Revis' left knee, then met with and examined Revis. It went well, a source said, with the doctors satisfied the knee was making good progress. But there are no guarantees for corners coming back from ACL surgeries, and Dominik and Schiano couldn't know unconditionally that Revis' knee would recover to the level it was before he was injured last Sept. 23. Dominik, Schiano and the medical staff met for about 30 minutes without Revis, and then the coach and GM went into a private meeting. In that meeting, as Dominik told me Sunday night, "We decided there was not enough risk to not do it. At the end of the day, you trust your doctors to tell you as much as they can, but it's a decision really that came down to me and Greg. We had to be comfortable with the risk, and I can tell you we are.''
You really cannot give the Bucs enough credit for the contract they signed. In any situation, there is going to be risk, but they minimized it to a shocking degree by not guaranteeing any of Revis' contract.
Teams can get themselves into trouble in the NFL by overpaying players, but it isn't always about the pure dollar figures. Take the Mark Sanchez contract for example. It wasn't that his salary was big. It's that he got so much guaranteed money that he was stuck on the team in 2013 because the cap hit would be too big to take by cutting him. The Bucs gave Revis a contract with none. That means if Revis is a shell of himself, there will be no cap hit for the Bucs by cutting him. It protects Tampa Bay from this contract ever becoming an albatross. The large annual value also makes contract drama less likely as Revis would be less likely to create problems with $16 million waiting for him.
Tampa Bay really hedged its bets nicely given the uncertain nature of Revis' situation.