Cole Beasley has a new home, with the former Buffalo Bills receivers joining one of the team’s biggest tormentors.
After being released by the Bills in March and publicly saying he wished to continue his career, Beasley will now have that chance. NFL insider Mike Garafolo reported that Beasley was joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers practice squad, giving an injury-struck receiver corps a veteran presence and a chance to play alongside Tom Brady.
Beasley Joins Brady
As Garafolo noted, the Buccaneers quarterback had pushed for the team to bring in another receiver to help.
“The #Buccaneers are signing veteran WR Cole Beasley to their practice squad with the expectation he’ll be elevated to the active roster soon, source says. Tom Brady pushed to bring in another veteran pass catcher and has had Beasley on his radar for a while,” Garafolo tweeted.
While he is not yet on the active roster, Beasley could have the chance to fill a significant role with the Buccaneers when he does make the move. A spate of injuries left the Buccaneers without their top three receivers in Sunday’s win over the New Orleans Saints, and will be without top wideout Mike Evans for next week’s game against the Green Bay Packers as he was issued a one-game suspension for a scuffle in Sunday’s win.
As ESPN’s Jenna Laine noted, the suspension and injuries have left Tampa thin in the slot against a pass-vulnerable Packers team.
“Russell Gage, a new addition this offseason, split reps with Evans, Scotty Miller and Perriman in the slot Sunday,” Laine wrote. “He caught five passes on seven targets for 28 receiving yards. Gage is still working on his chemistry with Brady, but the Packers are allowing 11.57 yards per reception — 10th most in the league this season — having had a number of coverage busts in Week 1 because of the Minnesota Vikings’ usage of motion and the presence of Justin Jefferson.”
Beasley Wanted to Continue Career After Leaving Bills
Beasley’s tenure with the Bills ended in some controversy. He earned criticism for his vocal stance questioning the COVID-19 vaccine, and ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported that the league fined him close to $100,000 for failing to adhere to COVID-19 protocol. Beasley also voiced his frustration about his reception in Buffalo, accusing Bills fans last season of booing him during games.
“Only place I get boo’d is at our home stadium,” Beasley tweeted on October 4. “Then some of the same people want me to take pictures and sign autographs. I thought Bills fans were the best in the world? Where’d they go? If the vaccine works then why do vaxxed people need to be protected from unvaxxed?”
Fans pushed back, saying they were chanting “Bease” and not booing him.
Beasley asked for a trade after the season, and the Bills released him in March when they could not find a trade partner. Though he would not be picked up by another team as training camps opened, Beasley insisted that he still wanted to play and believed he had a lot to contribute.
“I still feel like I have a lot left in the tank man,” he tweeted in August.