Buccaneers Make $18 Million Move With 2-Time Pro Bowler: Report

Bruce Arians

Getty The Buccaneers are exercising Tristan Wirfs' fifth-year option.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are making an $18 million move with a key player.

As reported by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport on Monday, April 24, the Buccaneers are exercising the $18.2 million fifth-year option on offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs’ contract. The move ensures that Wirfs will be with Tampa Bay through the 2024 season.

“The Bucs have officially picked up the fifth-year option for OL Tristan Wirfs, source said,” said Rapoport.

Tristan Wirfs is One of NFL’s Elite Tackles

Since entering the NFL in 2020, the 24-year-old Wirfs has established himself as one of the top tackles in the game. The former first-round draft pick has a First-Team All-Pro selection (2021), a Second-Team All-Pro selection (2022) and two Pro Bowl selections to his name.

According to Pro Football Focus, Wirfs posted an 83.8 offensive grade last season, ranking seventh among all tackles. During the 2021 season, Wirfs posted an 84.6 offensive grade, ranking sixth in the NFL among all players at his position. During the season prior — his rookie season — Wirfs posted an 81.8 offensive grade, ranking 12th among all tackles.

While Wirfs’ $18.2 million option will make him the 17th-highest paid offensive tackle during the 2024 season, his $5.1 million cap hit for the 2023 season makes him just the 42nd-highest paid tackle this year.

Following the release of longtime veteran tackle Donovan Smith, the Buccaneers could be looking to move Wirfs from the right side to the left side, as ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler noted back in March.

“The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have discussed the possibility of moving All-Pro right tackle Tristan Wirfs to the left side,” wrote Fowler on March 5. “Wirfs would have to be comfortable with that, but the early belief is he’ll be open to the possibility.”

Over the course of his first two seasons, Wirfs played in every game and didn’t miss a single snap. Wirfs did miss four games during the 2022 season, but he played in every offensive snap during the 13 games he started. Through three seasons, Wirfs has allowed just five sacks.

With the Buccaneers entering a reloading year following the retirement of Tom Brady, Wirf’s consistency will be relied upon as Tampa Bay lines up a new quarterback under center for the 2023 season. Either veteran journeyman Baker Mayfield or former second-round draft pick Kyle Trask projects to be the Buccaneers’ starting quarterback this season.

Buccaneers Not Trading Devin White, Says Todd Bowles

Despite linebacker Devin White’s request, the Buccaneers are not trading him.

As head coach Todd Bowles spoke to reporters on Monday, he stressed that Tampa Bay has no plans of trading the former Pro Bowler.

“We’ve got him for another year like Jason said,” Bowles told reporters. “We discussed it. We’re not trading him, and we’ll go from there. It’s the offseason right now, and nothing counts. We expect him to be there when the season starts.”

Bowles was referring to comments previously made by general manager Jason Licht regarding White’s future with the team.

“Yeah, well, first of all, we all have all the respect in the world for Devin,” Licht said. “He’s done some great things for us as a player, and we look forward to more from him in the future, so he’s on our team. … If he has the kind of year we think he’s capable of, hopefully we put this to rest, and everybody’s happy.”

As reported by ESPN’s Jenna Laine, White requested a trade due to being “fed up” with the team. Laine noted that this could be due to contract negotiations.

The Buccaneers picked up White’s fifth-year option worth $11.7 million for the 2023 season. However, there has been little indication that a long-term deal is in the works.



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