The hits keep coming for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who lost edge rusher Shaquil Barrett to a torn Achilles suffered in Thursday night's game against the Baltimore Ravens.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Friday an MRI confirmed Barrett's injury, which he suffered in the third quarter of the Buccaneers' 27-22 loss to the Ravens at Raymond James Stadium. The diagnosis means Barrett is done for 2022 and faces a lengthy recovery.
Coach Todd Bowles later confirmed the news, and Tampa Bay placed Barrett on injured reserve.
Barrett played 33 snaps, recording one sack before exiting due to the injury, which required a cart to help him off the field.
The two-time Pro Bowler and 2019 second-team All-Pro went from a undrafted free agent to a star in Tampa, becoming a menacing edge rusher who led the league in sacks in 2019, his first season with the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay franchise-tagged Barrett before the start of the 2020 season, and he signed a four-year, $68.5 million deal with the Buccaneers in 2021.
Barrett's injury ends his 2022 season after just eight games played and only three sacks recorded. He exits tied with linebacker Devin White and safety Antoine Winfield Jr. for the second-most sacks on the Buccaneers roster, and joins a lengthy list of Tampa Bay players who have suffered injuries this season.
Once seen as a force in the NFL, Tampa Bay's defense has taken a step back under coach Todd Bowles in 2022. The Buccaneers currently rank 11th in total defense, but 23rd against the run, while owning a top-seven mark in points allowed per game.
Two key contributors -- Jason Pierre-Paul and Ndamukong Suh -- walked away from the team in free agency, increasing Barrett's responsibility to make game-changing plays on the defensive side of the ball. Now that he's gone, the onus will shift to White -- who has been caught out of position in multiple key moments this season -- and the others to find a way to improve as the Buccaneers attempt to dig their way out of a 3-5 hole.