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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Bucs protected Barth with second-round tender



Bucs kicker Connor Barth is a restricted free agent, making him unlikely to change teams because the Bucs have the right of first refusal. Still, it appears the Bucs wanted to make absolutely certain, tendering Barth at a level that comes with compensation of a second-round pick.

Barth, who said he is anxious to rejoin the team and excited to stay in Tampa, said his understanding is his tender comes with a salary of roughly $1.9 million, a considerable salary for a young kicker in the NFL.

Barth was 23 of 28 on field goals last season with a season-long make of 53 yards. He finished 36 of 36 on extra points, showing consistency even while the Bucs struggled to find a reliable punter.

As a restricted free agent, Barth would first have to receive an offer sheet from another club and the Bucs would have to decline to match the offer before he could change teams. If Barth left, the Bucs would be compensated with a second-round pick from his new team.

In other words, there's almost zero chance of Barth going anywhere. However, keep something in mind: Barth and all other free agents -- both restricted and unrestricted -- can't sign until Friday at the earliest. After that, they reportedly are going to be prohibited from participating in practice until the start of the new league year, slated for August 4.

[Last modified: Monday, July 25, 2011 10:16pm]


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