A former Tampa Bay Buccaneers starter wants to continue his NFL career.
Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who started for the Buccaneers during the 2020 Super Bowl season, is looking to sign with a playoff contender this season. As noted by Michael David Smith of NBC SportsPierre-Paul is ready to sign a contract with the training squad to continue his career.
“Veteran NFL defenseman Jason Pierre-Paul hopes his career isn’t over,” writes David Smith. Pierre-Paul wants to join a contender and is willing to sign a practice squad contract, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Pierre-Paul, 34, played for the Ravens last season and started 13 games. Before that he played four seasons for the Buccaneers and before that he played eight seasons for the Giants.”
Jason Pierre-Paul was a key player on the Bucs’ Super Bowl team
The 34-year-old most recently spent four seasons with the Buccaneers (2018-2021) and started there 52 of his 54 appearances. Pierre-Paul recorded 33 sacks, 171 tackles and 55 quarterback hits during his four seasons in Tampa Bay, including a Pro Bowl appearance in 2020 after recording 55 tackles and 9.5 sacks.
Pierre-Paul became such an important part of the Buccaneers’ defense during their playoff run with Tom Brady at the helm and earned one Two-year, $25 million contract through the 2021 season.
Pierre-Paul most recently played for the Baltimore Ravens in the 2022 season. The former 15th overall pick signed after the start of the 2022 season and started 13 of his 14 appearances, recording 26 tackles and three sacks.
However, his play was obviously a decline compared to his Buccaneers days. According to Pro Football Focus, Pierre-Paul posted a defensive grade of 54.3 and a pass-rushing grade of 53.9 – both average grades. In comparison, Pierre-Paul posted a defensive grade of 69.2 and a pass-rushing grade of 71.4 during the 2020 season with the Buccaneers.
Pierre-Paul essentially played for the veteran’s minimum during the 2022 season – a base salary of $1 million – which likely means he would be willing to do the same for the 2023 season.
Over the course of his 13 seasons in the NFL – including his tenure with the New York Giants – Pierre-Paul has amassed 94.5 sacks, 629 tackles and 167 quarterback hits, along with two Super Bowl titles, an All-Pro selection and three Pro Bowl appearances.
Jay Glazer rejects the idea of Bucs starting Kyle Trask
The Buccaneers could soon experience a quarterback controversy.
After a 3-1 start to the season, Tampa Bay is currently in the midst of a four-game losing streak that has dropped their record to 3-5. Even though the record doesn’t look good, the Buccaneers are still just two games behind the New Orleans Saints – who they can defeat with a win – for the division lead in the NFC South.
The recent losing streak has led some to call for Baker Mayfield to be benched in favor of Kyle Trask, their third-year quarterback who has just nine pass attempts to his name.
However, Fox Sports NFL insider Jay Glazer doesn’t think it’s time Bench Mayfield. In fact, he argues that there’s a reason Tampa Bay is using the veteran quarterback instead of the former second-round draft pick.
“You’re still in there [NFC] South,” Glazer said. “So I think if they thought Kyle Trask could give us a better chance to win right now, we would do that. But I don’t think they believe that. Look, they know what Kyle Trask can do. Right? You see him every day. You know what Baker Mayfield can do.”
As long as the Buccaneers remain in the playoff hunt, it’s safe to assume Mayfield will be the starter. However, if Tampa Bay continues to lose and falls out of the playoff race, don’t be surprised to see Trask start before the end of the season.
DJ Siddiqi covers the NFL for Heavy.com, with a focus on the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Before joining Heavy, he covered the NFL and NBA for Forbes, ClutchPoints, CBS Sports, 24/7 Sports and Bleacher Report. More about DJ Siddiqi
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