A look at Jason Pierre-Paul’s Underrated Season and What it Means Going Forward

A look at Jason Pierre-Paul’s Underrated Season and What it Means Going Forward

by February 19, 2019 2 comments

Jason Pierre-Paul was the face of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense in 2018 despite many not realizing it. In 2019 he can prove himself in a big way.

In March of 2018, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers acquired pass-rusher Jason Pierre-Paul and a fourth-round draft pick from the New York Giants in exchange for two draft picks.

When the move was made, there was mixed emotions from the Tampa Bay fan base.

Pierre-Paul was twice a pro bowler during his seven seasons in New York but was heading into his age 29 season.

In 2015 he suffered a life-altering injury. The defensive end lost one of his fingers in a firework accident which affected his ability to rush the passer effectively.

The fans who were happy about the trade looked at Pierre-Paul’s impressive resume.

In addition, it was a seen as a chance to welcome home a University of South Florida football alum who played his college ball at Raymond James Stadium.

Those who were not happy about the trade cited old age, health risks and a contract that guarantees Pierre-Paul 40 million dollars through 2021.

After his first season in a Bucs uniform, it’s hard to criticize the Bucs front-office for making the move they did.

In what was a miserable season for the Bucs defense that saw them finish 27th in total defense Pierre-Paul was a big bright spot.

Pierre-Paul finished tied for 12th in the NFL and led the Bucs with 12.5 sacks.

In addition, he recorded 58 total tackles and forced a fumble.

Most importantly, however, he stayed healthy starting all 16 games.

With the Bucs poor defensive season, Pierre-Paul’s efforts flew under the radar.

He proved he could still be a game wrecker and get to the quarterback on any given play.

This off-season the Bucs defense is going to see a lot of turnover.

Todd Bowles has replaced Mike Smith as defensive coordinator and is looking to rebuild the awful unit from 2018.

The rebuild has already begun as the team has cut ties with Vinny Curry.

More cuts are going to be made. William Gholston, and Gearld McCoy both have high chances of being salary cap casualties.

The draft and free agency promise to bring in a handful of new faces.

With a new look expected to take shape Pierre-Paul will need to be an anchor. It all starts with duplicating his 2018 success.

If he can do that he will be prove to be a piece the Bucs can continue to build around.

In addition the Bucs will need Pierre-Paul to lead on and off the field. On the field he can lead by example as a game-wrecker. Off the field Pierre-Paul can share a ton of wisdom with some of the younger players that will likely join the team.

Pierre-Paul owns a super bowl ring unlike many on the Bucs current roster. Thus, there won’t be a better brain to pick for young players.

Last season Pierre-Paul quietly proved a lot of people wrong.

In 2019 Pierre-Paul can force fans to recognize his impact by being the face of a much improved defense.

2 Comments so far

Jump into a conversation

Leave a Reply