While the Buccaneers wait to see if Jason Pierre-Paul can come back from a fractured neck in the offseason, they have agreed with the Pro Bowl veteran defensive end on a contract restructure, which helps save them cap room in the short-term.
ESPN NFL insider, Field Yates was the first report Wednesday morning that Pierre-Paul has agreed to forgo his original $13.6 million salary in 2019 that the Bucs were not obligated to pay, but still get few million dollars potentially for this season:
Because JPP was on the NFI list, Tampa Bay was not obligated to pay him his salary. Instead, the Bucs give him a chance to make up to $10.5M, with a base value of $5M. JPP gets some security as he works to resume his career. https://t.co/i5yZlmVNgn
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) September 25, 2019
Pierre-Paul suffered the broken neck in a car accident back in May, and has been on the “Non-Football Injury” (NFI) list, since the beginning of training camp.
His one car accident early on Thursday morning May 2nd on I-95 South near Pembroke Pines. That’s when the FHP says, that the 30-year old former Super Bowl-winning defensive end for the Giants lost control of his Ferrari on the rain-slicked road and did a 360 degree wipeout into a guardrail.
Pierre-Paul had a passenger with him and both of them were transported to a local hospital, treated and then released. Pierre-Paul did not face any charges from the one car accident and the FHP said in the report that he was not impaired.
After the Buccaneers team physicians had an opportunity to evaluate him with their own tests and scans, it was learned that Pierre-Paul has suffered a fractured vertebrae in his neck.
Pierre-Paul chose not to have surgery, which would have likely ended any hope of him playing this season. He instead has been wearing a neck brace for past four months and now has been back at the team facility doing rehab this month.
After being acquired in a trade last March, Pierre-Paul led Tampa Bay with 12.5 sacks, an additional 16 tackles-for-loss and 20 more quarterback hits. was one of the few bright spots in a 5 – 11 season. JPP became the first Buccaneer since 2005 to have double digit sacks in a season.
If Pierre-Paul is able to come back from the injury later in the season, he will now get $5 million plus incentives. Also, the Bucs agreed to void the final year of Pierre-Paul’s existing contract that would have paid him a non-guaranteed $11.2 million for 2020. This means he can become an unrestricted free agent after this year, if he wants.
It’s still uncertain if and how effective Pierre-Paul can be this season or maybe ever again, with the injury.
Bucs-Winston overcome miscues to win third straight
It wasn’t easy and there were plenty of self-inflicted mistakes, but the Bucs found a way to come from behind, and defeat the Colts for a third consecutive victory Sunday.
Tampa Bay turned the ball over four times and found themselves trailing by double-figure twice, but QB Jameis Winston threw the go-ahead touchdown pass to Breshad Perriman with under four minutes to play and the Buccaneers defense held up to improve their record to 6 – 7.
On a day in which Winston threw for a career-high 456 yards, it actually started horribly This as, he threw an interception, once again, on the opening possession of the game. Darius Leonard’s pick led to a Jacoby Brissett 48 yard touchdown to Marcus Williams and a quick 7-0 lead. It was the third time in five games that Winston has thrown an int on the first Bucs drive.
Winston threw another interception later in the second quarter that was returned by Leonard 80 yards for a score and the Colts led 24-14.
Undaunted, Winston continued to gun-sling finishing 456 yards passing for a career-high yardage and four touchdowns, including a second half score to reserve receiver Justin Watson. And then, he threw the eventual game-winning 12 yarder to Perriman.
#Bucs take the lead!
Jameis connects with Breshad Perriman 🎯#INDvsTB
— PFF (@PFF) December 8, 2019
The Colts gave away two opportunities to potentially put the game away. First, when backup running back Nyheim Hines fumbled inside the Tampa Bay 20 with 10 minutes remaining, and then, later new rookie kicker Chase McLaughlin ,who replaced Adam Vinatieri who’s dealing with an injured knee, hit the right upright on 47 yard field goal that would have put in the Colts up by 7 late in the game.
Winston led the go-ahead drive from there, going 63 yards in eight plays and including converting a fourth down with a pass of 4 yards to Dare Ogunbawale. The touchdown to Perriman came on the very next play.
Tampa Bay stopped Brissett and the Colts on fourth down at midfiled with 1:45 remaining, when DE Jason Pierre Paul hit the QB’s arm. The ball fluttered in the air, Brissett caught it and then desperately and illegally tried to throw it a second time forward to another teammate. That pass was incomplete.
The Bucs ran out the clock for their second win at home this season.
The Buccaneers playoff hopes were dashed even in victory, though, as the Minnesota Vikings won their 10th game on Sunday. That means that even if the Buccaneers win out, they can no longer catch the Vikes in the NFC race.
Still, first year Bruce Arians team is certainly playing hard, and at the right times with three games to go
Bucs looking for three in row leads our primer
Week 14 of the NFL sees two Florida teams at home and the other one facing a familiar foe in New York. The Bucs try to make it three wins in a row hosting the Colts, the Dolphins travel to play the Jets and the Jaguars have gone back to their rookie QB, while hosting the Chargers.
First in Tampa Bay, the Buccaneers come off of back-to-back road wins, where they accumulated 11 sacks and six turnovers defeating Atlanta and Jacksonville. They will take on another AFC South opponent in the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts are stumbling with three losses in their last four games and have fallen out of the AFC Wildcard picture for the moment.
Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston has played better over the course of the last two games, but returns to Raymond James Stadium, where he threw four interceptions it a loss to the Saints three weeks ago. Winston is working with two of the premier receivers in the NFL in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin (above) who both have over a thousand yards this season and look to have a big day today.
The Colts have had success this season with Jacoby Brissett at quarterback and want to run the ball against what is the best run defense in the NFL, the Buccaneers.
Tampa Bay must win to keep slim playoff hopes alive trying to get into a 9 – 7 tiebreaker in the NFC Playoff Picture.
Next, the Dolphins come off a euphoric 37 – 31 win over the Eagles at home for their third win of the season. DeVante Parker had his best game as a Dolphin catching three touchdown passes. And, Miami scored on a trick play that saw punter Matt Haack throw a touchdown pass to kicker Jason Sanders. They now rematch AFC East rival the Jets who were humbled a week ago, as Cincinnati earned their first win of the season at their expense.
The Dolphins also defeated the Jets, and former coach Adam Gase, at home earlier this year
Finally in Jacksonville, the Jaguars have turned back to rookie QB Gardner Minshew. After three dismal offensive showings in a row under free agent Nick Foles, Minshew replaced him in the second half of last week. And, he sparked the Jaguars to a field goal and a touchdown in their 28 – 11 beat down by the Buccaneers.
The rookie did win four games in Foles’ absence due to his broken collarbone earlier this year. Fortunately for Jacksonville, the Chargers come in reeling having lost dramatically in Denver a week ago and questions are swirling whether it is the end of the tenure of Philip Rivers at quarterback.
Jacksonville’s defense is beaten up, including putting Myles Jack on injured reserve earlier this week with an injured kneed.