Former Buccaneers rising star defender continues incredible story
By Rob Leeds
The Buccaneers may not have seen the last of safety Justin Evans yet.
Justin Evans is a name that most Buccaneers fans haven’t heard in a while. Not so much out of sight out of mind, but most of us had to accept a long time ago that the promising young safety was not going to be a part of this franchise going forward.
This was through no fault of his own, but you can’t be a contributor on a team when you aren’t ever healthy.
What made the chronic Evans injuries so frustrating was that the talent was clearly there. The Bucs are obviously happy with their safety room now with a couple of very quality pieces, but Evans was supposed to be one of those guys too a few years back.
Evans’ first season in Tampa (and part of his second) showed a guy that had “it.” Evans was a rising star in the NFL on a defense that desperately needed someone else to step up, and the injuries that kept Evans off the field surely played a part in the weaker defensive performances.
After his time in Tampa came to a close due to never being on the field, it looked like the playing chapter of Evans’ career had come to a close. The good news (and bad news) is that Evans has found a new chance to get back on the field.
This new chance is coming with the Saints. Yes, New Orleans has gone after yet another former Buccaneer to bolster their roster, and while this is far from a sure thing, it is still nice that Evans at least has somewhere to prove he still belongs.
It’s impossible to pull for the Saints in anything, but Bucs fans will at least be happy to see Evans back with a chance to play.
Now, the question is assuredly coming from someone; “why couldn’t the Buccaneers give him this shot?”
The Bucs are simply in a different spot. A safety that may or may not pan out as the fourth guy is a lot to go after when you are competing for a Super Bowl. It’s tough to stomach, but it’s true.
One way or another, Justin Evans will get a shot to prove that he still has something left in the tank this year with the Saints. Let’s just hope those prove-it games don’t come against the Buccaneers.
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