Signing Jason Pierre-Paul changed a lot for the Buccaneers on defense.
Of all the big names that have joined the Buccaneers in the past few seasons, few have done as much to turn the team around as pass-rusher Jason Pierre-Paul.
JPP joined a team with a terrible defense that couldn’t stop a college team from scoring, and during his tenure they transformed into a defense that shut out Patrick Mahomes and one of the best offenses in NFL history in the Super Bowl.
The Bucs changed their future when they brought JPP back to the Tampa area, and it’s time to talk about the legacy that one of the defensive leaders for the Bucs leaves in the NFL.
Pierre-Paul may still have some gas left in the tank, but it is seeming more likely by the day that his time with the Bucs could be coming to a close. If we have seen the last of number 90 in Tampa, here are his career accomplishments:
Two-time Super Bowl champion (two different teams)
First-team All-Pro in 2011
Three-time Pro Bowler
91.5 sacks, 122 tackles for loss, and 164 quarterback hits
Is this a first-ballot career? Probably not, but it sure is enough to get people talking. JPP has longevity, stats, individual accolades, and team success. What more is there for a guy looking to make it into the most prestigious group in the sport?
After the Matthew Stafford conversation last week, there are people who are rightfully afraid of muddling down the talent in the Hall of Fame by letting in anyone who just has the stats. JPP goes beyond just the numbers, and his leadership played a huge role in making a young team a Super Bowl champion, although this doesn’t show up on the stat sheet.
Hopefully JPP can find a way to stay in Tampa a bit longer and keep making his case, but there is already plenty here if this is where his career ends to make a very compelling argument. Hopefully the voters feel the same way about a legend that left his mark on Tampa in a short time.
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