Buccaneers Tag Quarterback to Back Up Tom Brady

Blaine Gabbert

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Quarterback Blaine Gabbert

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have settled on a backup for Tom Brady. The franchise will re-sign Blaine Gabbert, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports.

Gabbert, who was the No. 10 overall pick in the 2011 draft, came to Tampa Bay last offseason. However, he was unable to play out the year because of a dislocated shoulder he suffered during the preseason.

Gabbert played for the Jaguars—the team that drafted him—in addition to the Cardinals, 49ers, and Titans previously. He played under coach Bruce Arians while the two were in Arizona together.

The 31-year-old has a 13-35 career record as a starter. Twenty-two of those losses came during his three years in Jacksonville. He went 4-9 during his two years in San Francisco and 2-3 during his lone season in Arizona. His best stint came during his lone campaign backing up Marcus Mariota, going 2-1 during his three starts.

Gabbert has thrown 48 touchdowns in his career while also tossing 47 interceptions. He has completed just 56.2% of his 1498 passes in the NFL.

Details on Tom Brady’s Pitch to the Buccaneers

The Buccaneers and Tom Brady first spoke about joining forces on March 18 and the future Hall of Fame quarterback apparently made a pitch to the Buccaneers GM, Jason Licht.

We had a great conversation — Bruce and I — we talked to him for over an hour and a half. And he made it clear in the conversation that he was very, very interested,” Licht said during an appearance on ESPN’s Get Up (via ESPN.com’s Jenna Laine). “It was almost like a recruitment on his part, telling us why it would make sense for him to come to Tampa Bay. The next call we made, we signed him, but it was at that phone call that we realized, that we felt like we had him.”

Brady signed a fully-guaranteed, $50 million deal with Tampa Bay.

Buccaneers Not Expected to Pursue Additional Wide Receivers?

The Bucs have Mike Evans and Chris Godwin on the outside, though Brady has historically found success with slot receivers. He also has a fondness for Antonio Brown. Yet, Licht made it clear the wide receiver won’t be a top priority for the remainder of the offseason.

We feel like there’s a lot of teams that are struggling to find one really good receiver. And we have two really outstanding receivers in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin,” Licht said. “Right now, there is only so much money that can go around. There are no plans to sign any other receiver at this time.

“Antonio is somebody that Bruce has come out and had some words about, and Bruce knows him better than all of us. So right now, I would just say that we’re focused on other areas of our team.”

Evans and Godwin weren’t the only receivers to find success in Tampa Bay last season. Breshad Perriman had a breakout campaign in 2019, though he departed for the Jets, as New York was looking all over for upgrades at the position.

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