Stefon Diggs trade should make Bucs feel even better about re-signing Mike Evans

It turns out the Texans rumors were more real than we thought.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Houston Texans / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

We are well through the first few waves of free agency, but that didn't stop a bomb from dropping on Wednesday afternoon. Stefon Diggs was traded to the Houston Texans in a blockbuster deal that ripples back to the shores of Tampa Bay.

The Bucs weren't involved in the trade, nor were any of their previous picks, but it was a reminder that Jason Licht getting a deal done with Mike Evans before free agency opened was one of the best moves of the offseason.

It looked almost certain that Evans would test free agency this year, and he would have done so against the backdrop of rumors circulating for months. We all knew about the New York Jets inquiring about a trade and the Kansas City Chiefs were getting floated as a potential landing spot as well.

However, the Houston Texans posed the biggest threat to Evans returning to Tampa Bay to continue his Hall of Fame career where it started. Watching the Texans trade for Diggs is all the proof Bucs fans need that Evans likely would have ended up in Houston had Tampa Bay not found a way to bring him back.

Stefon Diggs trade should make Bucs feel even better about re-signing Mike Evans

We didn't want to believe it at the time, but everything was lining up for Evans to make the move over to Houston. The Texans have C.J. Stroud, one of the best young quarterbacks in the league, under center and a pretty clear path back to the playoffs, as well as a defense that is going to be even better next year.

On top of that Houston had money to spend and had the unique selling point of being a homecoming. That's something Evans essentially confirmed when talking about all of the rumors on a podcast last month.

"Everybody wanted me to play in Houston, or they wanted me to play with the Chiefs," Evans said. "At the end of the day, I was gonna go back to Tampa."

For as much sense as Houston made, it does seem like Evans really wanted to leave Tampa Bay. He had been adamant throughout the entire process about how much he loves the Bucs and their fans, and referred to Tampa as his home on more than one occassion.

That being said, it's impossible to deny how well he'd have fit with Houston and the Texans trading for Diggs suggests they were probably thinking the same thing. Who knows how things would have played out if Evans had hit free agency but this is yet another reason to be thankful that the Bucs didn't allow things to come to that.

More Tampa Bay Buccaneers news and rumors