Gabe Carimi Trade Example of Recouping Value

Gabe Carimi is a name that many draft aficionados may remember from the 2011 NFL Draft.

The former Bears 29th-overall pick was sent packing yesterday on a one-way flight to Tampa Bay only two seasons removed from his selection in return for a 2014 sixth-round pick.

Carimi started only two games as a rookie before suffering a right knee subluxation in week 2 of the 2011 season. Kept on the roster while rehabbing, Carimi was placed on injured reserve in November. Scouts had previously red-flagged Carimi coming out of Wisconsin for concerns about the durability of his right knee — but that didn’t stop the Bears from using their first-round pick on the athletic blocker.

This past season wasn’t much of an improvement, as Carimi was ranked 73rd out of 80 qualifying tackles by Pro Football Focus in his ten starts at right tackle — with an even worse ranking of 78th in pass protection. Carimi was removed from the starting lineup after facing San Francisco phenom Aldon Smith in week 11 — where he was jointly responsible (with left tackle J’Marcus Webb) for 5.5 sacks by the second-year pass-rusher.

New Bears head coach Marc Trestman was hesitant to name Carimi as a starter during the offseason, but he did state that Carimi wouldn’t be playing any tackle for Chicago in 2013. Over the past weeks leading up to Carimi’s trade to the Buccaneers the team was unsure whether Carimi would attend minicamp following his voluntary skipping of organized team activities.

Tampa Bay already has a solid offensive line group, so Carimi will have an uphill battle to crack the final roster. His experience as a tackle and passable play as a guard towards the end of last season must have given Tampa Bay general manager Mark Dominik hope that Carimi can contribute as quality depth.

This is not the first we’ve seen of a team attempting to get some value out of a perceived draft bust like Carimi. The Broncos similarly sent 2009 second-round cornerback Alphonso Smith to the Lions in return for reserve tight end Dan Gronkowski. Aaron Curry, the 2009 fourth-overall pick, was also jettisoned by the Seahawks after a disappointing two-plus seasons with Seattle.

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