Shaq Barrett: 'No Reason' Bucs Can't Make Run After Brady, Gronkowski Additions

Blake SchusterCorrespondent IIIMay 7, 2020

FILE - In this Dec. 15, 2019, file photo, Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Shaquil Barrett is shown in action during the first half of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)
Paul Sancya/Associated Press

Count Shaquil Barrett among those placing high expectations on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season. 

Speaking to Eduardo A. Encina of the Tampa Bay Times, the Bucs linebacker made clear where to place the blame if bringing in Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski doesn't help the team advance through the playoffs. 

"Now that it seems like we have the pieces to put (a postseason run) together, there should be no reason why we can't get it done," Barrett said. "If we don't get it done, it's the players; we didn't work hard enough. It should be on us if we don't get it done." 

Tampa Bay is currently +600 (bet $100 to win $600) to win the NFC this season at Caesars Sportsbook, tied with the Dallas Cowboys and behind only the San Francisco 49ers (+375).

That's the result of upgrading an offense that was already one of the league's best in 2019. 

With Brady and Gronkowski in the fold, the team has a Super Bowl window for at least the next two seasons, unless Brady retires before his current deal expires. 

With the coronavirus pandemic keeping players away from team facilities, Barrett knows there's even more of an onus on him and his teammates to come to training camp prepared: 

"It's a lot different. But it's always been on us to get it done. So it's just making it harder, like we really have to be on our own to get it done without gyms being open, without having access to facilities. I know a lot of players have (their own gyms), so it's not that big of a difference. But that is a big difference, not being able to get (organized team activities) in with the new guys and just getting that team bonding time to build that camaraderie you need to be a championship contender."

The last thing anyone will want to do is make a bad impression on Brady before the season even begins. 

For Barrett, who is playing with the franchise tag a year after leading the league in sacks (19.5), he's not running away from those demands. He's ready to help the Bucs become great.