Rumors for weeks have placed Barrett atop Tampa Bay’s free agent hierarchy, and this decision means Jameis Winston is less than three hours away from de facto free agency. The legal tampering period begins at 10:59am CT, and Bucs’ five-year starting quarterback will double as one of the more interesting free agents in recent memory.
After serving as one of Von Miller‘s supporting-casters in Denver for four seasons, and not producing too much statistically, Barrett only received offers from two teams in 2019 free agency. He then shattered the Bucs’ single-season sack record, posting an NFL-high 19.5 to go along with 37 quarterback hits.
This tag would give Barrett $15.8MM (the linebacker price) or $17.8MM (should he win a potential grievance to be tagged as a defensive end).
The sides will have until July 15 to finalize an extension. Barrett, 27, said recently he would play the 2020 season on the tag. Bruce Arians has also indicated he would like to keep Barrett, Jason Pierre-Paul and Ndamukong Suh. The Bucs made the first step Monday morning. They might have to outwork outside competition to hang onto Suh and JPP.
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