Bucs’ Barrett up to record 8 sacks in 1st 3 games

TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers outside linebacker Shaq Barrett recorded 4.0 sacks against the New York Giants Sunday, bringing his three-game tally to 8.0 and tying him with Mark Gastineau in 1984 for most sacks by a player through the first three games of the season, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

“He’s just wearing out left tackles,” coach Bruce Arians said of Barrett, who recorded 3.0 sacks last week against the Carolina Panthers and wore a headband that read “Can’t be stopped” in the Bucs’ locker room after the game.

“It’s just everything working perfectly — the playcalls, the guys in the back and the inside, the inside push, the push from the other edge [rusher] Carl [Nassib] — so everything’s just working and I’m just beating my one-on-ones at the right time and making a play,” said Barrett, who became the first player in Bucs history to record three or more sacks in back-to-back games. The last NFL player to do so was Ezekiel Ansah in 2017.

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Barrett’s 4.0 sacks tied him with Marcus Jones in 1990 and Simeon Rice in 2003 for most sacks in a single game in franchise history, and his two forced fumbles also tied a franchise record.

Barrett, who is in his first season with the Bucs after signing a one-year, $5 million deal in March, earned a $250,000 bonus for reaching 8.0 sacks for the season, a source told ESPN. If he records 10 sacks for the season, he’ll get an additional $250,000. The Bucs’ last-second, 32-31 loss overshadowed any personal victories.

“The disappointment has taken over all of it. It was a good game, but we lost,” Barrett said. “You can’t go to the playoffs if you have 4.0 sacks and lose a game. You’ve gotta get a win. Winning is all that matters.”

Barrett had only 14.0 sacks in his first four seasons combined with the Denver Broncos, including a career-low 3.0 sacks last season.

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