Shaq Barrett to be utilized primarily as pass-rusher

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This is music to my ears. Ever since the Buccaneers made the splash move to sign Shaq Barrett, the young linebacker from Denver, I’ve wanted to know just how defensive coordinator Todd Bowles planned to use him. Never an elite coverage linebacker (though he can get the job done), Barrett was starting to become a very capable pass-rusher.

Where Will He Play?

Would Barrett be more of a “drop in the flats” containment type of linebacker? Or would Tampa Bay utilize his pass-rushing skills for the betterment of the team? This morning, Barrett answered questions for Buccaneers’ media on the second day of training camp and had this to say about his place in the new defense:

Something To Think About

In my stat predictions series, I’m on record putting Barrett’s sack totals at eight on the season. Today’s comments only reinforce my thought process. In Denver, Barrett played alongside Shane Ray and Von Miller and was still able to produce solid numbers. Now, he joins rookie Devin White and ageless vet Lavonte David as the team’s exclusive pass-rushing specialists on the second level of the Tampa Bay defense.

The truth is, Vita Vea and Ndamakung Suh are going to allow Barrett multiple opportunities for one-on-ones throughout the season. Truthfully speaking, he will surely capitalize on those situations. Considering the one-year, $4 million contract he signed, he’s very much a low-risk, high-reward kind of player. He’s young and wants to be paid. I expect a breakout season. Overall, Barrett has an opportunity to join an exclusive list of Jason Licht free-agency steals. Not bad at all.

 

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