As it stands, Jason Pierre-Paul is no longer under contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. His two-year, $27 million deal signed with the club a couple of offseasons ago has now expired, meaning he’ll be an unrestricted free agent when the doors fly open on the new league year in March. And to ensure he’s at this best for whichever team signs him in 2022 — the Buccaneers not being out of that race — the three-time Pro Bowl defensive end appears to have undergone offseason surgery to repair a nagging shoulder issue, per his Instagram account.
“Ain’t shit,” he wrote in the accompanying caption to the IG story. “Watch me kill shit when I get back!! I’m saying it now, I told you so!!”
Pierre-Paul also posted clips of some minor post-op range of motion tests from his hospital bed.
The 33-year-old started in 12 games last season and missed none during the Super Bowl run of 2020. His sack tally dropped from 9.5 the year prior to 2.5 in 2021, but he also finished with a combined 86 tackles, five forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in his time with Tampa Bay. Pierre-Paul joined the Buccaneers in 2018 after spending most of his stellar NFL career — one that was nearly derailed by a tragic fireworks accident — with the New York Giants, where he made a name for himself as one of the premier pass rushers in the league.
The former 15th-overall pick has proven he’s still a high-value piece with plenty of tread left on the tires that can be added to any team’s defensive front. It remains to be seen what team that will be, but the February procedure should have no impact on his availability to start in 2022.
He’s expected to be one of the more sought-after free agents in March.