The Buccaneers search for pass rushing help took an interesting turn on Thursday morning. That’s when the Bucs acquired N.Y. Giants, and former USF Bulls, pass rushing specialist Jason Pierre-Paul in a trade involving draft picks.
Once more, Adam Schefter of ESPN, was the first with the story:
Giants and Buccaneers are swapping fourth-round picks, and then Jason Pierre-Paul gets dealt for an additional third-round pick as NY continues to reshape its roster.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 22, 2018
The Bucs are in desperate need of outside pass rush help, as they were last in the NFL in sacks in 2017 with only 22. They had previously signed DE Vinny Curry and DT Beau Allen from the Eagles and also Mitch Unrein from the Bears during free agency last week.
As for Pierre-Paul, he’s 29 and just finished his 9th season with the Giants with 8.5 sacks and 58.5 sacks in his career. He was a first round pick by New York in 2010 (15th overall) out of USF, where he had terrorized offensive lines in the Big East for former coach Jim Leavitt’s defense in his lone season 2009, and had 6.5 sacks and 16 tackles for loss that year.
NFL Network’s Kim Jones got the first reaction from Pierre-Paul Thursday morning after the trade:
When I asked JPP about playing for Tampa Bay, he mentioned going back to where he played college ball (South Florida) and emphasized significance of being closer to his son, little JPP. #NYG
— Kimberly Jones (@KimJonesSports) March 22, 2018
Pierre-Paul is more known for a horrible fireworks accident that severely injured his right hand on July 4th, 2015. He faced the possibility of having his hand amputated, but after several surgeries, and the amputation of fingers, doctors were able to save his hand.
Pierre-Paul rehabbed tirelessly and came back in the 2015 season to play the final eight games. Ironically his first game back was against the Bucs in Tampa, while wearing a special padded glove on the hand.
He progressively played better the last two years with the injury and had seven sacks in the Giants 2016 Wildcard playoff season.
Pierre-Paul made a massive $22.5 million with bonuses for 2017 in the first year of a new contract. This year, he is due $12.5 million in actual salary and bonuses, and the Bucs will take on that contract.
As it stands and unless they re-negotiate (and they likely will), Pierre-Paul is slated to make $14.5 million next year for the Buccaneers.
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