In just over a week, the Minnesota Vikings will open up their 2023 regular-season schedule with a home matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, September 10th.
The Vikings already know who will be starting under center for the Bucs in the contest (Baker Mayfield), but it now sounds like there's a possibility that Tampa could be without their top wide receiver, Mike Evans, for the matchup.
On Friday, NFL Media's Mike Garafolo shared a statement from Evans' agent, Deryk Gilmore, that states any current contract negotiations involving the veteran receiver and the Bucs will come to an end next Saturday, September 9th, if an agreement for a new deal for Evans is unable to be reached before then.
In the statement, Gilmore also alluded to the current Tampa wide receiver looking for a new team to play for in 2024 if he isn't extended before next Saturday. Evans is currently in the final year of his contract with the Bucs.
Following the release of this statement, many have speculated that it might be wise for Tampa to consider trading the 30-year-old wide receiver before he walks for nothing in 2024.
It seems more likely that the Bucs would wait until this year's trade deadline to complete any sort of deal that sends Evans to another team. However, there still seems to be a small possibility that Tampa could choose to trade the veteran pass-catcher before their Week 1 game against the Vikings if they're presented with an enticing enough offer.
Evans has been with the Bucs since they selected him with the No. 7 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, and in each of his nine seasons in the league, he's accumulated at least 1,000 receiving yards.
Currently, the latest odds from the DraftKings Sportsbook have Minnesota favored by six points in their upcoming Week 1 contest against Tampa. If Evans ends up getting traded before then, one would assume that the Vikings will be favored by even more when they step onto the field for their regular-season opener.