Gerald McCoy – DT
Had it not been for a little ballplayer named Warren Sapp, then Gerald McCoy would be the most popular, and best, defensive tackle in the history of the Buccaneers. Heading into the 2010 NFL Draft, McCoy out of Oklahoma and Nebraska’s Ndamukong Suh were seen as neck and neck as not only the top defensive tackles but top defenders available period. The general consensus was that whoever the Lions drafted at two, the Buccaneers would draft the other one at three. The Lions selected Suh second overall, and the Bucs got the “consolation prize” McCoy at three. As fate would have it McCoy is now looking for a new NFL team and Suh was just resigned by the Buccaneers after winning Super Bowl LV with them, very funny how fate works.
After a bit of a rocky start, all McCoy would do to justify the Buccaneers drafting him would make six consecutive Pro Bowls from 2012-2017, and be named first-team All-Pro in 2013. McCoy would sign with the division rival Carolina Panthers in 2019, before signing with the Dallas Cowboys in 2020. He would succumb to a ruptured quadriceps injury in practice, being released without playing a snap. He is still looking to play another snap in the NFL.
McCoy’s 54.5 sacks with the Buccaneers is good enough for a comfortable third place all-time, trailing only Simeon Rice and Sapp with 69.5 and 77 respectively. For reference, Chidi Ahanotu is in fourth place with 34.5, and Brad Culpepper not far behind with 33.
It’d be a real shame if McCoy’s career ended in this sort of whimper. Here’s to hoping that McCoy signs on with a team in need of a veteran presence, or even a reunion for McCoy to go out with a bit of a bang.