Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul was about to head out Thursday morning to go shopping for tile when he received the call telling him he had been traded to the Bucs. He was excited. The move meant he would be closer to his son.
Friday’s press conference introducing the veteran defensive end provided a sense of who Tampa Bay just traded for. Pierre-Paul laughed, became emotion, and expressed his excitement for coming back to Tampa — this time playing at the professional level.
He will be lining up next to All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy. The two have the potential to be an incredible force on the defensive front for Tampa Bay. If all goes according to plan, they’ll be successful and hopefully hoist the Lombardi trophy.
“[Gerald McCoy’s] a great man. I can just tell from his energy that he just wants a championship. That’s what I’m here for. Everybody is here for that,” said Pierre-Paul. “At the end of the day, that’s a feeling that you don’t know until you’re there. You don’t know that feeling until you’re there. It’s like having your first kid again. I want that feeling back.”
Despite his successes, the 29-year-old knows that people doubt him, wondering if he is still the same player. It’s his drive for another ring, more Pro Bowl appearances, and his son that motivates him.
“I want to actually win another Super Bowl, actually make it to a couple more Pro Bowls,” he said. “I have a whole list sheet, man. I actually have my son, which he knows about football now. He knows exactly my number, number 90. For a three-year-old to know that, that’s a lot for me. I’ve still got energy left in the tank and as long as I’m playing and my son is happy and my family is happy and the organization is happy, I’m fine. I have a lot to prove.”
And that motivation will greatly benefit the Buccaneers.