When all things were considered equal, it seems Gerald McCoy preferred a twice-a-year shot at a dish best served cold.
After being shipped out of Tampa Bay and replaced immediately (both positionally and numerically) by Ndamukong Suh, McCoy has made his free agent decision.
He's signing with the Carolina Panthers, a team that, unlike the other finalists in the Browns and Ravens, offers him unfettered access to his old squad and a favorable DT rotation.
Source: The #Panthers are signing Gerald McCoy. He sticks down South and can play against his former team.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 3, 2019
With a thin crop at the position, highlighted by Kawann Short and Dontari Poe, McCoy will be an immediate difference-maker for a team that generally profits, back to their 2016 Super Bowl run, from having big bodies stuffing the middle.
Though McCoy seemed tempted by Cleveland and Baltimore, it appears he was less than comfortable with the prospects of...actually living in those two places.
One thing that became clear in this process: Gerald McCoy wanted to stay in the South, where it’s familiar, rather than Baltimore or Cleveland. Loved both teams, wasn’t sure about both cities. That and the chance to play against his former team twice...— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 3, 2019
Now, he'll get a chance to chase Jameis Winston and Ronald Jones around twice in 2019. Comfort and revenge: what more can a former franchise icon really ask for, after dealing with an unsettled future?