Buccaneers linebacker Shaquil Barrett is expected to be in uniform for this weekend’s Wild Card playoff game against Washington. The team announced today that they’ve activated Barrett from the reserve/COVID-19 list.
We learned last week that linebacker Devin Whitehad tested positive for COVID-19, and Barrett subsequently landed on the reserve/COVID-19 list as a close contact. White’s positive test ultimately sidelined both players for Week 17, and while Barrett will surely be back on the field this weekend, there’s still no definitive word on White’s status (it was initially assumed that he’d miss the contest).
Following a 2019 campaign where he compiled 19.5 sacks, Barrett had another solid showing in 2020. The former undrafted free agent ultimately finished the regular season having compiled 57 tackles, eight sacks, and a pair of forced fumbles.
Barrett was slapped with the franchise tag last offseason. Barring another tag, Barrett should be able to secure a long-term deal as an unrestricted free agent this offseason.
Defensive lineman Steve McLendon was also placed on reserve/COVID-19 list alongside Barrett and White last week. There’s been no update on his status.
Devin White is out for the Buccaneers’ regular-season finale and likely the team’s playoff opener. The second-year linebacker tested positive for COVID-19, according to NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero (on Twitter).
In addition to White being sidelined, the Bucs placed Shaquil Barrett on their reserve/COVID-19 list. As a close contact, Barrett will miss Week 17. As a close contact, Barrett will be eligible to return for Tampa Bay’s wild-card game.
White and Barrett represent two key pillars of the Bucs’ pass rush. Despite profiling as an off-ball linebacker, White has nine sacks this season. Barrett has produced eight. Jason Pierre-Paul (team-high 9.5) will go it alone this week, and the Bucs will face the NFC East champion next week — in all likelihood — without part of their standout inside ‘backer tandem.
The Bucs used the No. 5 overall pick on White last year, marking the first time a team had devoted a top-five selection to a traditional linebacker since the Seahawks chose Aaron Curry fourth overall in 2009. White has worked out better thus far. Though Pro Football Focus has not been especially impressed with the non-pass-rushing elements of White’s game this season, he is far and away the Bucs’ tackles leader with 140. The LSU product has also racked up 15 tackles for loss and 16 QB hits in what has been a breakthrough second season.
Buccaneers LB Devin Whitewill not play this weekend, per Greg Auman of The Athletic (Twitter link).
Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepardis out of the concussion protocol and will play in Week 3 per Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com (via PFT). Rookie QB Daniel Jones will be making his first start, so Shepard’s presence will be especially helpful.
The Seahawks are getting closer to full strength, as both WR David Mooreand defensive end Ezekiel Ansah are expected to play in Week 3, per Curtis Crabtree of Pro Football Talk. We had already heard that Ansah was likely to make his Seattle debut this weekend, but Moore’s return is earlier than expected, even after we learned at the end of August that he would avoid IR.
Tyler Kroft‘s Bills debut may be put on hold for awhile longer. Kroft was a full participant in Wednesday’s practice, but as Josh Alper of Pro Football Talk writes, Buffalo HC Sean McDermott told reporters that Kroft injured his ankle in Thursday’s practice and will undergo further evaluation.
With another busy day of football news winding down, let’s take a look around the NFC:
The 49ers are “not in” on Jalen Ramsey, a source tells Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports. San Fran isn’t interested in trading for the cornerback because of the level of compensation that the Jaguars are requesting (two first-rounders) and the sizable extension Ramsey will expect to sign.
Jason Verrett, who has dealt with health issues throughout his career, has yet to make his debut for the 49ers and the cornerback hasn’t ruled out requesting a trade. Maiocco (as he relays in a separate piece) asked Verrett if he would ask for one if he continues to be inactive for games and the CB responded with “We’ll see what happens.”
In an interview on NFL Network, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said he wants to coach until he’s 70-years-old. Zimmer turned 63 in June.
Buccaneers LB Devin White continues to sit out of practice, as Josh Alper of PFT relays. White injured his knee during the team’s TNF game against the Panthers last week and coach Bruce Arians insinuated that White would not be out long. Now, it’s looking like his status for Tampa Bay’s Week 3 contest is in doubt.
September 13th, 2019 at 2:49pm CST by Sam Robinson
Devin White left Thursday night’s game before the lightning delay hit, but the rookie Buccaneers linebacker appears to have dodged a long-term injury. Bruce Arians said (via ESPN.com’s Jenna Laine) the No. 5 overall pick suffered a grade 1 MCL sprain. While it would seem White is in danger of at least missing the Bucs’ Week 3 game against the Giants, Arians would not rule out an immediate return.
Here is the latest from the South divisions, moving first to the Bucs’ Week 2 opponent:
Ron Rivera denied Cam Newton is experiencing issues with the foot he injured during preseason play or his surgically repaired shoulder. The Panthers have now lost two home games, and Newton has not played especially well in either. He completed 48% of his passes on Thursday and did not fare well against Bucs blitzes. Prior to Newton’s shoulder injury last season, he had the Panthers on track for another playoff berth and was on a better statistical run than his 2016 or ’17 slates. Now 0-2, the team will have an uphill battle to make it back to the postseason. The 30-year-old passer is signed through the 2020 season.
Nick Martin‘s three-year, $33MM Texans extension features fully guaranteed salaries ($6.1MM and $7.25MM) for the 2019 and ’20 seasons and a $5MM signing bonus, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets. The Texans center’s 2021 and ’22 base salaries of $7.25MM and $7.75MM are non-guaranteed.
Julio Jones‘ three-year, $66MM Falcons extension came with $64MM in guarantees, which outpaces every other wide receiver’s deal by a staggering margin. Jones’ pact also could bump up to $72MM, with Joel Corry of CBS Sports tweeting the 30-year-old wideout’s deal has annual escalators. It’s not yet known what benchmarks Jones would have to hit to trigger those, however.
Jaguars left tackle Cam Robinson has received clearance to make his season debut, but Doug Marrone said (via ESPN.com’s Michael DiRocco, on Twitter) the third-year blocker will be held out against the Texans. It would appear Robinson, who is dealing with a different knee problem than to the ACL tear he suffered last season, will be on track to return to his post in Week 3. He has not played since September 2018. Due to a hamstring malady, Yannick Ngakoue is also out for the Jags this week.
Some of Peterson’s teammates aren’t happy that he’s a healthy scratch, according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. The future Hall-of-Famer is regarded by some as the best back on the team and many members of the Redskins believed that come week 1, the question would be how many carries Guice would be taking away from Peterson and not whether Peterson would be suiting up.
Washington gave Peterson a $1.5MM signing bonus and another $1MM to re-sign with the club this offseason. No word if the team has plans to trade or release him.
When Buccaneers rookies report to training camp tomorrow, they’ll all be signed. Tampa Bay completed the signing of their draft class this morning by agreeing to terms with first-round linebacker Devin White. Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times tweets that White will officially sign his contract tomorrow.
White earned a number of accolades during his junior season at LSU, including the Butkus Award, All-American honors, and a first-team All-SEC nod. After finishing with 123 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, and three sacks, White established himself as one of the top defenders in the class. He was ultimately selected by the Buccaneers with the fifth-overall pick.
The Bucs will immediately be counting on White as they transition into a 3-4 defensive front under new coordinator ToddBowles. The rookie will likely start alongside fellow inside linebacker LavonteDavid, and his versatility should allow him to be a three-down player.
The Buccaneers have now signed their entire draft class to contracts. That grouping includes:
The 2019 Supplemental Draft is tomorrow, and just like last year we could see a lot of action. Before last season, when two players were taken, there had only been one selection since 2013. This year, it seems likely that two players will get taken again, Washington State safety Jalen Thompson and West Virginia receiver Marcus Simms. Thompson is more highly regarded by the scouting community, and has been drawing a lot of interest. He met with the Packers earlier today, and 26 teams attended his workout yesterday. To help get you prepared for tomorrow, Dane Brugler of The Athletic studied game tape of both players and wrote up detailed scouting reports.
He notes that while Thompson is a “terrific athlete” and good in coverage, he’s also “undersized for the safety position.” There’s been some speculation that Thompson may have to switch to corner at the pro level. Brugler gives Thompson a third or fourth round grade. Brugler writes that Simms is a burner with excellent speed, but that his route-running isn’t very well developed. As a “best-case NFL player projection,” Brugler lists Kenny Stills, while giving Stills a fifth-to-seventh round grade. We’ll know the results of the draft tomorrow afternoon.
Here’s more from around the league:
Things reportedly aren’t going well between rookie first-round pick Josh Jacobs and the Raiders. There’s a holdup in negotiations over his rookie deal, and it looks like Jacobs isn’t going to report to training camp in a couple of weeks. Don’t expect anything similar for linebacker Devin White and the Buccaneers. The fifth overall pick in April’s draft is going to sign “any day now,” and “you can bet he won’t miss a meeting,” writes Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times (Twitter link). The Bucs are counting on White to play a huge role for their revamped defense, so it’s good to hear there’s no drama surrounding his contract.
A couple of weeks ago we heard that free agent defensive lineman Malik McDowell had been arrested, and now we have video of the incident, courtesy of TMZ Sports. In the video, McDowell can be seen getting tased, and then attempting to fight the arresting officer after pulling the taser prongs out. McDowell was drafted by the Seahawks in the second round back in 2017, but never played a game for them. He suffered serious injuries in an ATV accident before his rookie training camp, and the Seahawks never cleared him to return. McDowell has reportedly been cleared to play by independent doctors, and recently met with the Cowboys, but nothing materialized. Back in May, the Seahawks filed a lawsuit seeking to recoup some of McDowell’s signing bonus.
Free agent defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson is one of the biggest names left on the market. He was arrested for DWI at the beginning of June, which could be delaying his signing. Wilkerson recently appeared in court, and turned down a plea deal prosecutors offered him, per Shayna Jacobs and Sarah Valenzuela of the New York Daily News. Wilkerson’s attorney said it was “telling” that they offered the deal, and seemed confident his client would get off. After spending seven seasons with the Jets, Wilkerson signed a one-year deal with the Packers last season. A serious ankle injury ended his first year in Green Bay after just a few games. Wilkerson is still capable of playing at a high level, and should sign somewhere soon.
The NFL Draft is just barely in the rear view mirror, which means that teams are full of hope for their young rookies. But, of course, the NFL Draft is largely a crapshoot, and not every player will realize their full potential.
This year’s draft had talent, but lacked a true consensus on the top player. Many evaluators pegged defensive end Nick Bosa as the player with the highest ceiling in the 2019 class, but other saw Alabama’s Quinnen Williams as the “safest bet.” The 49ers pounced on Bosa with the No. 2 pick while the Jets (and former GM Mike Maccagnan) were delighted to land Williams at No. 3 overall.
Leading up to the draft, much of the attention was on Oklahoma quarterback (and one-time MLB hopeful) Kyler Murray. When Murray announced that he would ditch the Oakland A’s, his stock exploded – Murray was considered a borderline first-round prospect in the winter, but wound up as the Cardinals’ choice at No. 1 overall. Murray has the speed that teams crave at the QB position, but questions persist about his size and overall lack of experience as a full-time starter.
The Cardinals’ long flirtation with Murray brought us the expected result, but the Raiders gave us the real first shock of the draft when they tapped Clemson defensive end Clelin Ferrell at No. 4 overall. Not to be outdone, the Giants snagged Duke’s Daniel Jones at No. 6 overall. Heading into the draft, neither player was thought to be anywhere near Top 10 consideration, but Mike Mayock and Dave Gettleman were unwilling to trade down and risk losing out on their guys.
The domino effect created by those picks allowed the Bucs to grab inside linebacker Devin White (No. 5 overall), the Jaguars to land outside linebacker Josh Allen (No. 6), the Lions to snag top tight end T.J. Hockenson, the Bills to draft defensive tackle Ed Oliver (No. 9 overall), and the Steelers to finish out the Top 10 with linebacker Devin Bush. Most of those picks were warmly received, but nothing is certain in the draft.
Which Top 10 pick do you think has the highest bust potential? Click below to cast your vote (link for app users) and back up your choice in the comment section.