After seeking multiple opinions on his injured neck, Bucs star defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul will apparently not have neck surgery in hopes that he could possibly play in 2019.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on Friday afternoon that the veteran defensive end, who injured his neck in a single-car accident a week ago, will instead undergo extensive therapy and rehab in hopes to heal the injury:
After receiving several opinions on his fractured vertebra, #Bucs pass-rusher Jason Pierre-Paul is proceeding with the non-surgical option, sources say. As coach Bruce Arians said publicly, the hope is he plays during the 2019 season. But no surgery is planned at this point.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) May 10, 2019
Pierre-Paul was injured 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-slick 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. At this point, it doesn’t look like Pierre-Paul is facing 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.
And, since then, he has been seeking other opinions about whether surgery is the best route and whether or not he would have a chance to play for a second season this year for the Buccaneers without it?
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.
At Friday’s rookie minicamp head coach Bruce Arians was asked about the latest on Pierre-Paul’s status. He said “all we can do is pray and hope for the best and hope it’s one of those five or six month things and go from there.”
The reference to “five or six month things” is that Pierre Paul might be available by September or October begin play.
Pierre-Paul has already been given $7.5 million of his $14.9 million salary for 2019 in the form of a roster bonus in March. Tampa Bay will likely put him on the “non-football injury” list, where he will not count against the roster. Then, they could potentially, receive some salary-cap relief for this season until, if and when, he is activated.
Earlier on Friday, the Buccaneers confirmed that another player, linebacker Kendell Beckwith, who was also injured in his own automobile accident last April has probably had his career ended due to his broken ankle and subsequent surgery. The Bucs aannounced placing Beckwith on the “NFI” list again, for this season.