Finally! The lone tight end on this list makes his appearance just outside of the top-10. Jimmie Giles is the fifth-ranked receiver in Buccaneers history. Even more impressive, Giles is the only tight end in the top-15 in terms of receiving yards in team history. Simply put, Giles is the best tight end in franchise history, and second place is not even within reach.
In my opinion, the tight end is one of the most undervalued positions in the sport of football, especially in recent times. Back in the day, tight ends were focal points of offenses. Perhaps it was due to a lack of game-breaking talent at wide receiver like we are seeing now? But how many tight ends are pivotal in NFL offenses? Three, maybe? Rob Gronkowski, Travis Kelce, and… exactly.
In stark contrast, Giles was a key cog in Tampa Bay offenses in the late ’70s and ’80s. This is evidenced by his rankings in team records, but also proven by his four Pro Bowl appearances in the nine seasons spent with the Buccaneers. Oh yes, forgot to mention that. Giles spent nearly a decade with the team, showing how irreplaceable he was.
In those nine seasons, Giles recorded exactly 4,300 yards and 34 touchdowns. To say Giles did nearly all of his damage in Tampa Bay would be putting it lightly. For his career, Giles had 5,084 yards and 41 touchdowns. That means, in the four other years he spent with other teams he only tallied roughly 800 yards and seven touchdowns. A Buccaneer for life, Giles was one of the best players the franchise has ever had.