Shaq Barrett has found a new home in free agency after being released by Buccaneers

After being released earlier this offseason, Shaq Barrett has found a new home.
Chicago Bears v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Chicago Bears v Tampa Bay Buccaneers / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages

One of the hardest decisions the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had to make this year was how to clear some cap space to re-sign key players. That means parting ways with one of the most reliable and well-liked players in the locker room, as Shaq Barrett was the first cap casualty of the offseason.

Barrett spent the last five seasons with the Buccaneers and fully delivered. He helped the team win a Super Bowl in 2020, was a second-team All-Pro prior, and went to a Pro Bowl. He was also a leader in the locker room, specifically among the latest crop of rookies who came in and started to learn their way from Barrett.

Yaya Diaby was particularly close to Barrett and posted a touching farewell message to his mentor after news broke that the veteran was being released. Even that act was a sign of mutual respect, as Jason Licht wanted to ensure Barrett had the maximum amount of time to find a new team rather than waiting to release him after the edge rush market had been picked over.

That strategy is likely what led to Barrett finding work on the second day of the legal tampering period.

Shaq Barrett agrees to deal with Miami Dolphins in free agency

According to NFL insider Jordan Schultz, the Miami Dolphins are signing Barrett and adding him to an already impressive defense.

Barrett goes from one talented linebacking group to another, as he joins guys like Bradley Chubb, Jordyn Brooks, Melvin Ingram, and Jaelan Phillips in Miami. The Dolphins also recently hired a new defensive coordinator, Anthony Weaver, who comes over from the Baltimore Ravens and another talent group of linebackers.

All told, Barrett is in a position to once again help a young team try and take its next step. He did that with the Broncos back in 2015 and Tampa Bay four years ago -- both resulting in Super Bowl titles. That's the aspiration the Dolphins have and they're getting one of the truly best players and people in the league.

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