Nico Collins contract makes Buccaneers look even smarter for re-signing Mike Evans

As though Bucs fans didn’t already have enough reasons to love Mike Evans re-signing in Tampa Bay this offseason.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

It’s been a busy offseason, and the Houston Texans kept the train rolling this week by giving Nico Collins a huge contract extension.

Houston extended Collins on a $72 million deal that will keep him as part of the core until 2028. Not only was it a reward for the hard work that Collins has put in during his short career, but it’s a huge investment in C.J. Stroud since it locks in a top weapon for him moving forward.

It also confirms that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were smart to get a deal done with Mike Evans when they did.

All season long the cloud of doubt hung over Tampa Bay as it seemed increasingly like Evans would leave in free agency after having spent his entire career with the Buccaneers. It would have been a devestating blow to the momentum the team built up last season, but it ended up being something the Bucs avoided at the 11th hour.

Just days after announcing he would test free agency, Evans had a change of heart and signed a two-year extension to remain in Tampa Bay. It’s a deal that looked good at the time and has continued to age better the more other deals around the league get done.

Buccaneers re-signing Mike Evans looks even better after Nico Collins deal

In the wake of Collins getting a fat new contract extension, it’s hard to not look back at the deal Tampa Bay gave Mike Evans and feel even better about it than everyone already did.

Mike Evans

Nico Collins


2 Years

3 Years

Total Value






Signing Bonus



Beyond the extra year on the contract for Collins, the major difference between the two deals is the signing bonus money being paid out. Houston is giving Collins $17 million, where the Bucs are giving Evans $35 million guarunteed.

Jason Licht and Mike Greenberg have masterfully used void years to spread out the hit on contracts like the one for Evans, so that part looks a lot better on paper but is much closer when popping the hood on the deals.

Still, the value the Bucs are getting for Evans is absolutely insane. He’s arguably the best receiver in the league and was going to be perused as such even if he tends to be criminally underrated. Additionally, Houston giving Collins this extension continues to show just how serious the team was about spending resources on its receiving corps to help C.J. Stroud, a reminder that they likely would have stolen Evans away had he hit the open market.

Evans confirmed that the Texans were a team that interested him and the way Houston has been spending money to bring in recievers suggests they would have outbid Tampa Bay if given the chance. Not long after missing out on Evans, the Texans traded for Stefon Diggs and brought back both Noah Brown and Dalton Schultz; it’s not hard to see them having made Evans a crown jewel of their offseason additions.

As for the Buccaneers side of things, bringing Evans back was likely a linchpin to their offseason plans. It’s not hard to connect dots between Baker deciding to re-sign before free agency opened and Evans coming back when he did. It also showed everyone looking to come back or sign in Tampa bay just how serious everyone is about winning this year.

It was already easy to love the deal for Evans, but the Nico Collins contract extension should make the Bucs feel even better.

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