Shaq Barrett

Let’s Play Tag: What should the Tampa Bay Buccaneers do?

  • Jameis Winston
  • NFL
  • Shaq Barrett
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers
By Daniel Goodwin III March 1, 2020 2 Comment
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As the 2020 NFL Draft Combine continues, there has been plenty of trade, draft, and franchise tag rumors circulating.  The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been at the center of many of these rumors.  The latest word is that Tampa Bay is leaning heavily towards placing the franchise tag on putside linebacker Shaq Barrett.  This will not bode well with the impressive pass rusher.  In an interview during Super Bowl week Barrett talked candidly about the possibility of being tagged.

Coming off of a 2019 season that saw him get 19.5 sacks, he feels deserving of a long term contract.  Even with this tremendous season Barrett had, many are wondering if he is a one year wonder.  He claims to have even more production in store for next year.  Barrett said that he wants “no part” of the franchise tag which would pay him 17 million in the year 2020 if the Buccaneers indeed use it on him.  However the transition tag “is cool” Barrett said because it would allow him to test the market and gives Tampa Bay the opportunity to match any offer.  He also made it very clear that he wants to remain with the Buccaneers long term.  So if Tampa Bay uses its franchise tag on Shaq Barrett, where does that leave Jameis Winston?

The transition tag would then be available for use and possibly placed on Winston.  The Buccaneers are leery of committing to the signal-caller long term.  There are some major concerns about Jameis Winston going forward in his NFL career.

Reports are that he has some knee issues that may become bigger problems in the future.  He did play through a torn meniscus in 2019, as well as a broken thumb.  Then there are the concerns of how careless he can be with the ball at times. Winston finished the year with 30 touchdown passes and 30 interceptions, he will throw you out of a lot of games and keep you in some games. Winston has started addressing some of these concerns in the offseason, he recently had Lasik eye surgery, as well as surgery to repair the torn meniscus in his knee.

If the decision is to use the transition tag on Winston, he would be free to test the market and the Buccaneers would have the right to match any offer he receives.  If Jameis played on the transition tag, his salary for 2020 would be just under 25 million.

The Buccaneers tag decisions can get even more difficult in the coming weeks due to the CBA negotiations.  If NFL players sign a new agreement before March 18, 2020, the Buccaneers would then only be able to use one tag in 2020.  That means that one of these guys would either be walking out of the door or signing a long term deal with the Buccaneers.

Do you trust Winston despite the injury and turnover concerns?  Do you trust that Barrett was not just playing for a contract in 2019, and will continue his arch in production?  Do you franchise tag Barrett and risk damaging the relationship with him?  Do you give Winston another look, or has five years been long enough?  General manager Jason Licht and head coach Bruce Arians have plenty to think about.


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March 7, 2020

Big decisions. Times up- Use the tag for Barrett.


Daniel Goodwin

March 2, 2020

Tampa would be best served by locking down Barrett and moving on from Winston. He's been there 5 years, but you don't see the maturation necessary to become "that guy" in Tampa.

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