Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Shaq Barrett has two years remaining from the four-year deal worth $72 million that he signed with the team in 2021 and he’s hoping that he could play with quarterback Tom Brady for at least one more year. During an interview, Barrett said he wants the 45-year-old Brady to stay next season with the Buccaneers, especially with the way their season ended with a 31-14 loss to the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Wild Card round. “It is a tough situation to be in, especially going out the way we went. But I mean, I'm always willing to have time for another year if he's willing to play and stay,” Barrett said.

“It’s hard to like you always got to account for Thomas, like you can't get another Tom Brady anywhere. Like no matter how hard you try, no matter how many years, I don't think anybody ever going to do what Tom did,” he said. In case Brady decides to stick with the Buccaneers for one more year, Barrett said that he would come back strong and ready for next season. “Just give us one more time I'll be back, I'll be ready,” said Barrett, who is still recovering from the torn Achilles that he sustained in October during their loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

Barrett to respect Brady's decision

Barrett said he would also be willing to convince Brady to return for his 24th season and stay with the Buccaneers, but he would respect the quarterback’s ultimate decision regarding his NFL career.

“I don't know how he feels. I don't know how his body feels. I don't know what's going on like want to be around the kids more, like there are a lot of factors that go into it so I respect like whatever he decides in anything,” he said.

Bucs need pass rushers, says Bowles

The Buccaneers have been known for their consistent pass rush, thanks to Barrett and other pass rushers.

The team tallied 47 sacks in 2020, the same number in 2021, and 45 in 2022. However, Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com noted that the Buccaneers’ pass-rush rate has dipped significantly, citing NFL Next Gen Stats. According to Smith, the Buccaneers pressure rate has dropped from 29.4 percent in 2020 to 27.5 percent in 2021 and to just 25.1 percent this season.

“I thought we got better from a pass defense standpoint in that aspect, but we can also rush the passer better,” head coach Todd Bowles during Tuesday’s news conference, one day after the Buccaneers lost to the Dallas Cowboys, 31-14, in the NFC Wild Card Game.

Bucs to fire OC Byron Leftwich

The Buccaneers are expected to part ways with their offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich after the team struggled on putting points on the board this season, according to Scott Reynolds of Pewter Report. After averaging over 30 points per game over the last two seasons, the Buccaneers suffered a huge dip on offense with just 18 points per game this year.