Most NFL fans would be forgiven if they forgot about Russell Gage playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season. With all the other massive signings and the “retirement” of Tom Brady, the signing of Gage on a three-year deal slipped under the radar for many.
While not the star of the Atlanta Falcons roster during his tenure playing there, ironically that was always recently-signed Buccaneer Julio Jones, Gage was able to provide explosive games on a fairly-consistent basis, enough that he caught the attention of the Bucs front office.
While Gage spent the early part of the offseason dealing with an injury, he has since returned, and all signs are indicating that the Bucs made the right move in going after the receiver.
According to head coach Todd Bowles, Gage has been the most impressive receiver in camp so far and has been nearly un-coverable on routes.
Now, obviously there still isn’t the highest level of contact at the preseason camps, so you can take his current success with a grain of salt, but Bowles’ praise should make many Bucs fans optimistic about the first-year player.
Gage is also earning $10 million a year, so he also should be performing at a level worth of Bowles’ praise, so that’s good to hear if you’re the Bucs front office that spent the money.
Especially with fellow receiver Chris Godwin unlikely to be playing at the start of the season as he still recovers from his torn ACL injury, Gage may get a lot of opportunities in those first few games before he returns.
If Gage can perform, he would be an invaluable asset to the Bucs providing some extra depth for a sometimes injury prone receiving core. At 26 years old, Gage is just hitting his prime and will hopefully be a major contributor to the team for the next three years.
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