Shaq Barrett: From Baltimore to Buccaneers


One of the things about the new and improved 2019 Buccaneers defense has been the pressure, particularly, from the linebacking corps. Pressure that set the tempo and dictated to the Carolina Panthers what would and would not be allowed. One of the players setting that tempo is OLB Shaquil Barrett.


Steven Barrett was coaching the Charm City Buccaneers in Baltimore. Barrett had seen firsthand how many kids had their dreams derailed. He had moved his eldest son, Kevin, to a private boarding school in Nebraska. The last straw was when young Shaquil had his wallet and cellphone stolen. Eyeing a move to Boys Town, Nebraska, Barrett missed his older brother. After the move, would thrive both academically as well as athletically.

An all-state defensive lineman at Boys Town, Barrett would move up and start his college career at Nebraska-Omaha, the school would eventually drop its football program. Barrett would transfer to Colorado State. Because the program at the previous school had been eliminated, he would be eligible to play immediately. And play he did.

Setting The Tempo

Playing for the Rams in the Mountain West Conference would allow Barrett to fly. Over the next three years, Barrett started 35 of 38 games. He recorded 246 tackles (116 solo), 18 sacks, and 32.5 tackles for loss. For good measure there were three interceptions, six passes defended, seven forced fumbles and three blocked kicks. A pattern started emerging for the type of player and the high motor Barrett has.

Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You

Barrett would go undrafted in the 2014 draft and sign with the Denver Broncos as a free agent. After spending 2014 on the practice squad, he was signed to the active roster Week 7 against the 49ers. He would get signed to the active roster once again that season but not play in the AFC Divisional playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts.

After a strong 2015 preseason, Barrett would make the 53-man active roster for the 2015 season. Barrett would play that season behind linebackers Von Miller, Demarcus Ware, Brandon Marshall, and still record 41 tackles (28 solo), with 5.5 sacks, four forced fumbles, four passes defensed and two fumble recoveries. After an injury to Demarcus Ware in Week 6 against the Cleveland Browns, Barrett moved into the starting OLB position.

Barrett would pick up some Super Bowl hardware after the Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers 24-10 in the 2016 Super Bowl.

Welcome To Tampa

After spending the next three years on a defensively talented Broncos team, Barrett signed a one-year contract with the Buccaneers on March 15. One of the early shining stars on a Buccaneer defense that is scorching Earth, Barrett and his four sacks have Buccaneer fans excited.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are once again raising the defensive flag up the ships flagpole and the NFL is taking notice.