The Tampa Bay Buccaneers recently added Kyle Rudolph but the team may not be finished adding former Pro Bowlers. ESPN’s Jenna Laine predicts that the Bucs will sign an outside linebacker prior to Week 1. Anthony Barr and Ryan Kerrigan, both four-time Pro Bowlers, are among the “intriguing names” the Bucs could look at during training camp.
“The Bucs will sign an outside linebacker before the start of the regular season,” Laine wrote on July 25, 2022. “The Bucs still have Pro Bowler Shaq Barrett. While Joe Tryon-Shoyinka takes over for Jason Pierre-Paul, who remains unsigned, and Anthony Nelson will serve in a rotational capacity. But beyond those three, they’re thin and unproven with Cam Gill being the only other player having regular-season game experience.
“The list of quarterbacks they’ll face this season is downright absurd. Carl Nassib, Anthony Barr and Ryan Kerrigan are among some intriguing names still available.”
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Barr Has Only Played 13 Games During the Last 2 Seasons
A big reason why Barr remains unsigned is his recent injury history combined with his asking price. The veteran linebacker has only played in 13 games over the last two seasons. Barr notched 72 tackles, six quarterback hits, five pass deflections, three tackles for loss and three interceptions during his 11 appearances in 2021.
The defender earned just a 62.9 grade from Pro Football Focus for his play during the 2021 season. If Barr can stay healthy, his talent would make the linebacker a valuable rotational player for Tampa Bay. While with the Vikings, Barr made the Pro Bowl four straight seasons (2015 to 2018). At the end of last season, Barr sounded like a player ready to move on from Minnesota.
“It’s definitely bittersweet to end this way, but it kind of is what it is, so,” Barr explained during a January 9 press conference. “I’ve been doing it long enough to understand what kind of comes next, keep things in perspective and just be ready for whatever happens in the future.
“I’m very thankful to be a part of this organization, the Will family, much appreciation [to ex-GM Rick Spielman and former head coach Mike Zimmer] for taking the chance on the kid back in 2014, making my dreams come true, and it’s been a pleasure being a Viking for the last eight years. I’m not too sure what the future holds, but whatever it is, I’ll always have a special place in my heart for Minnesota.”
The Cowboys & Commanders Have Also Expressed an Interest in Barr
The Bucs will have competition if they are serious about signing Barr. KSTP’s Darren Wolfson reported that both the Cowboys and Commanders have been in talks with Barr this offseason.
“Well, going back to January, I wanted to check on whether he would just outright retire,” Wolfson detailed to SKOR North during a July 19 interview. “That just his body is so broken down, does he want to continue playing? So, I checked a few weeks after that, I was told yeah, his plan is to continue playing.
“So, he’s been training as if he will be in some team’s training camp. I texted you many weeks ago saying keep an eye on the Dallas Cowboys. I know the Cowboys certainly are interested in Anthony Barr. Washington has also kicked the tires, but right now I would say keep an eye on the Dallas Cowboys.”