Linebacker Lavonte David has agreed to long-term deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, signing a new five-year deal worth $50.2 million, reports said Sunday. ESPN stated that $25.5 million will be guaranteed money for the 25-year-old David, who will be in the final year of his rookie deal in 2015. The team officially announced the signing on Twitter on Monday.
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@TBBuccaneers) August 10, 2015
David, who will be entering his fourth NFL season, made the All-Pro First Team in 2013, when he logged 145 tackles, 7 sacks, 2 forced fumbles and 5 interceptions. David’s numbers dropped a bit in the 2014 season -- with 146 tackles, 1 sack, 4 forced fumbles and no interceptions, but he remains one of the top 4-3 linebackers in the league.
"There’s several reasons why we’re excited about extending Lavonte, but first and foremost, he’s a phenomenal player,” Bucs general manager Jason Licht said via the team’s official website. "One of the most professional players I’ve been around. He and Gerald McCoy epitomize what professionalism is in the NFL."
David, who was a second-round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, chosen No. 58 overall, will be one of the top-paid linebackers in the league with his $10 million-per-year average. Other linebackers who will earn more are Justin Houston (Kansas City Chiefs) at $16.8 million, Clay Matthews (Green Bay Packers) at $13.2 million, Ryan Kerrigan (Washington Redskins) at $11.5 million, and Bobby Wagner (Seattle Seahawks) at $10.75 million.
For his career, David, who is from Miami, is credited with 425 tackles, 10 sacks, 5 forced fumbles and 6 interceptions.