We have been waiting all off- season for some big news out of one Bucs place and we finally got it today. The Bucs announced the signing of Mike Evans to a 5-yr 82.5 million dollar contract. The signing of Evans makes him the second highest paid receiver in the NFL trailing only Antonio Brown. Evans will get 16.5 million a year while Brown pulls in 17 million a season.
Evans was approaching the final year of his contract and there would have been no shortage of teams lined up to pay Evans. This contract guarantees that Evans will stay in Tampa through the 2022 season.
Since being drafted out of Texas A@M in 2014, Evans has been the Bucs No. 1 receiver and has over 1,000 receiving yards in each of his first four seasons.
In his four years in Tampa, Evans has 309 catches for 4,579 yards and 31 TD’s. Evans trails only Mark Carrier and Kevin House in carrier receiving yards, Carrier has 5,018 career receiving yards, while Evans has 4,579 receiving yards. Evans will become the Bucs all-time leading receiver in 2018.
Evans’s 31 career TD’s trails only Jimmie Giles 34 TD’s for first place all-time in Bucs history. Another record that Mike Evans will own this season.
Although the chemistry between Evans and Winston was missing last season due in part to the shoulder injury of Winston, the Winston to Evans combination should be something Bucs fans can look forward to for another five seasons.
After signing the contract extension, Evans commented via Bucs Nation “I’m excited to announce I will be spending the next several seasons in Tampa Bay with the Buccaneers with one goal in mind: winning a Super Bowl with my teammates. I want to thank the Bucs, from the owners to the front office, for believing in me and allowing me to take care of my family. I want to also thank my agents; Deryk Gilmore and Darren Jones for all of their hard work. I’m going to continue to strive for greatness on the field as well as in my community”.
The Bucs are still 55 million dollars or so under the salary cap and there is still enough money around to sign Ali Marpet, Demer Dotson and Kwon Alexander to long term deals. Earlier this week, the Bucs signed Dotson, Chris Conte and Josh Robinson to one year contracts. All three would have been UFA’s on March 14th if the Bucs had not used the club option for 2018.
Jason Licht can now focus his attention on the contract extension due Jameis Winston in 2019.
The Bucs still have a lot of work to do on the defensive side of the ball to get ready for the 2018 season. Defensive line, and defensive backs are still major issues for the Bucs. But today, the Bucs put their money where their mouth is by paying Mike Evans the money that is worthy of one of the best WR’s in the game.