Connor Barth remembers sitting in his car in the parking lot outside the Miami Dolphins’ facility in the summer of 2009, trying to decide if his NFL dream was still worth pursuing.
“I didn’t even know if I wanted to play anymore because I was just down on myself,” he said. “But I kept fighting and I ended up here and just kicked away. I’m really excited to be where I’m at. It’s a blessing, and I just want to continue to work and get better.”
“Here” is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ facility, and it’s also his home for the foreseeable future after he signed a new four-year contract with the team on Thursday. The Buccaneers had placed their franchise tag on Barth, a pending unrestricted free agent, on March 1, and he could have returned to the team at any time on a one-year deal simply by signing that tender offer. Instead, Barth and the Buccaneers worked out a deal that indicates the team’s confidence in him following his record-breaking season in 2011.
And thus, two years and