Trent Cole to Visit Tampa Bay Buccaneers


Oct 26, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Trent Cole (58) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals defeated the Eagles 24-20. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Former Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Trent Cole is visiting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

According to Adam Caplan of ESPN, Tampa Bay will be Cole’s first visit in free agency.

The need for Cole on the Bucs’ defensive line is glaring.

Tampa Bay was tied for 21st in sacks last season with 36. Last season Cole had 6.5 sacks and has 85.5 over 10 seasons with the Eagles. The 32-year-old has had at least eight sacks in seven of his last eight seasons.

Defensive line continues to be a problem for the Bucs. High profile signing Michael Johnson failed to live up to expectations and there are whispers the Bucs may cut the former Cincinnati Bengal after he registered just four sacks in 14 games.

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Adrian Clayborn, a former first round pick, is a free agent after missing all but one game last season due to injury. Da’Quan Bowers is also a free agent too.

The only returning quality defensive end is Jacquies Smith who had 6.5 sacks in his rookie season. However, he still doesn’t project as a three-down lineman. The Bucs also have William Gholston who has four sacks over his first two NFL seasons.

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Cole’s numbers have declined over the past two years due to the Eagles’ switch from a 4-3 defence to a 3-4. In Tampa Bay Cole would be able to return to his more natural position of an edge rusher in a 4-3 scheme.

He was set to count $11.6 million against the cap next season before his release but will earn much less than that now due to his age.