Devin White leaves Bucs to sign with Eagles, which is probably best for everyone involved

The writing was on the wall, as the Devin White era officially comes to an end in Tampa Bay.

NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Philadelphia Eagles v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Philadelphia Eagles v Tampa Bay Buccaneers / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages

On Wednesday the Tampa Bay Buccaneers brought back a key member of its Super Bowl-winning defense, signing Jordan Whitehead to a two-year deal. A day later it lost a member of that defense, but the feeling among fans was not as somber as one may think.

Devin White signed with the Philadelphia Eagles, ending what was once a promising tenure that ended up trending hard in the wrong direction. White was a Pro Bowler for the Bucs and a key piece of a defense that brought a Lombardi Trophy back to Tampa Bay but it seems he peaked during that 2020 season and never developed into the star everyone wanted him to be.

It was looking at one time like White would take the torch from Lavonte David and be the next leader of the defense. Now he heads to Philadelphia on a one-year deal that is about $93 million shy of what he demanded from the Bucs last offseason.

Devin White signs with Eagles, giving everyone gets a fresh start

He caused a stir last spring when he demanded a trade following contract negotiations not going the way he wanted. White was looking to get paid top dollar at his position, which was around $100 million based on what Roquan Smith got from the Baltimore Ravens, but the Bucs wouldn't budge.

Rather than work something out, White decided to bet on himself this season -- a gamble he lost.

The writing was on the wall all the way back in Week 15 when White was involved in a bizarre incident in which he was ruled a surprise inactive ahead of the Bucs game in Green Bay. That seemed to be the final nail in his coffin, as it came after a season of inconsistent play, with moments where he'd flash followed by ones in which he refused to run back a Pick Six.

It seems he wore out his welcome in the locker room as well. After the incident in Green Bay it was reported that White had rubbed teammates and coaches the wrong way with his attitude during the team's losing streak.

Jason Licht wasn't shy about his disappointment in how things went, holding firm last offseason when White lashed out and notably deprioritizing his free agency when asked about potential moves.

White played as part of a rotation the rest of the season but the relationship seemed to have already run its course. Now he heads to Philly with a chance to get back to being the guy so many Bucs fans had high hopes in.

The move gives the Bucs a fresh start as well, allowing the team to potentially draft someone at inside linebacker who fits the youth movement happening on defense. It's unfortunate that things ended this way but it's a clean slate for everyone which might end up being for the best.

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