As Buccaneers defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul waits for more medical opinions about his neck injury, he could miss significant playing time if surgery is required.
Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports that Pierre-Paul would miss five or six months if he needs surgery for fractured vertebra. The regular season starts in four months, so that would mean Pierre-Paul missing the first month or two of the season.
However, the report says that there’s still a chance that Pierre-Paul won’t need surgery and could return in Week One.
Pierre-Paul suffered the injury in a single-car accident. This marks the second time in his career he has suffered a potentially serious injury away from the field during the offseason. On July 4, 2015, Pierre-Paul suffered serious hand injuries in a fireworks accident, causing him to miss half the season.
The 30-year-old Pierre-Paul is due a $13.65 million base salary, $1 million roster bonus and $250,000 workout bonus this year, but that could be jeopardized if a non-football injury prevents him from playing.