The NFL’s reigning sack leader will certainly be back in Tampa Bay for at least the 2020 season, but not without a final request.
Pass rusher Shaq Barrett has informed the Bucs that he plans to accept his one-year franchise offer, but wants to be appointed to a defensive end instead of an outside linebacker, according to ESPN̵
The two sides still hope to agree on a long-term extension, but those talks are still nowhere near a meeting place, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport:
Barrett has maintained all season and even during his incredible 2019 campaign that he would stay in Tampa Bay for at least the 2020 season, no matter what. He prefers security for a long-term deal, but has always made it clear that he would play 2020 on the franchise tag, if necessary, rather than endure.
The gem of last year’s NFL-free agent class, Barrett signed with the Bucs on a $ 4 million annual deal and then went on to lead the NFL with 19.5 sacks.
Don’t be surprised if the two sides eventually end up with a long-term extension sometime this year, especially if Barrett continues to put up big numbers at the start of the 2020 season. He fits perfectly into Todd Bowles defense in Tampa Bay, and staying there would be the best situation for all parties, as long as Barrett gets paid what he is worth.