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Lavonte David considered leaving the one NFL team he's played for since being drafted in 2012. When Tom Brady retired, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had more questions than answers, and the linebacker was eyeing the 2024 offseason as his potential departure. 

Not wanting to be around during a rebuild, David said he began considering either retiring or testing free agency after the 2023 season, when his contract was expiring. How last season panned out -- the Bucs finishing 9-8 and winning the NFC South title along with an upset win against last year's defending NFC champions in the playoffs -- made him rethink his future. 

"Maybe. Or I would've moved on, just to be honest with you. But I'm happy I made the decision I made," David said when discussing whether he would have retired after last season had things gone differently, via the Tampa Bay Times

David and the team did not have a hard time coming to an agreement, the linebacker said, as he knew he wanted to remain in Tampa. He signed a one-year, $8.5 million deal this offseason. 

"Honestly, that didn't take long," David said on his decision to keep playing. "I definitely still love the game of football. I still want to play and I still feel like I'm playing at a high level. I still feel like I can compete with the best and obviously the organization felt the same way. It was a no-brainer for me to come back. Us being competitive also played a main part in it. I'm definitely looking forward to another great season."

Last season, David led the Bucs in tackles with 134. He had 17 tackles for a loss and 4.5 sacks.

"At the end of the day, I was doing everything right for this organization to continue to want me here to be around when things started changing, so I'm blessed to be a part of it," David said.