© Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Devin White has tested positive for COVID.
Devin White is out for the Buccaneers’ regular-season finale and likely the team’s playoff opener. The second-year linebacker tested positive for COVID-19, according to NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero.
In addition to White being sidelined, the Bucs placed Shaquil Barrett on their reserve/COVID-19 list. As a close contact, Barrett will miss Week 17. So long as the pass-rusher does not test positive, he will be eligible to return for Tampa Bay’s wild-card game.
White and Barrett comprise two key pillars of the Bucs’ pass rush. Despite profiling as an off-ball linebacker, White has nine sacks this season. Barrett has produced eight. Jason Pierre-Paul (team-high 9.5) will go it alone this week, and the Bucs will face the NFC East champion next week — in all likelihood — without part of their standout inside ‘backer tandem.
The Bucs used the No. 5 overall pick on White last year, marking the first time a team has devoted a top-five selection to a traditional linebacker since the Seahawks chose Aaron Curry fourth overall in 2009. White has worked out better thus far. Although Pro Football Focus has not been especially impressed with the non-pass-rushing elements of White’s game this season, he is far and away the Bucs’ tackles leader with 140. He has also racked up 15 tackles for loss and 16 QB hits in what has been a breakthrough second season.
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