3 former Buccaneers that could return to Tampa in 2021
By Rob Leeds
An all-time great for the Buccaneers
Anyone who says that McCoy coming back hurts the team is lying to themselves. McCoy was the best or second-best player on the field for the Bucs for the better part of a decade, and his decision to join the Panthers after getting cut for refusing a pay decrease and smiling are funny reasons to hate a player.
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Everyone forgets that this is a business. If your boss came to you, told you they’d pay you half to stay or they’d fire you, and then a rival offers money to get back at your boss, you wouldn’t take that? Loyalty or a lack thereof played no role in that decision, and the Buccaneers got what was coming to them when they played McCoy for the first time on the Panthers.
Even though he played for a rival, McCoy was a dominant defensive lineman during the 2010s. With more sacks than Ndamukong Suh and fewer games played, McCoy’s production set itself apart during his time with the Buccaneers.
As for another false narrative, other than in 2011, where injuries were a legitimate problem, McCoy never started and played in less than 13 games in a season.
After 2011, McCoy started and played in 104 out of 112 games (93%). The NFL’s injury rate is extremely high, so to hold a player to a standard higher than that over the better part of a decade is ridiculous and only trying to push a false narrative.
Gerald McCoy was an excellent player for the Buccaneers and one of the few bright spots in the 2010s. His ability to step in as the fourth guy on the defensive line behind Suh against single blockers is exactly what Tampa Bay needs in a depth lineman, and McCoy deserves the chance to play on a playoff team for the first time in his career.
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