Bucs' Arians prioritizing defense: 'I don't care who's my quarterback'
Will Vragovic / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians knows what his team's priority will be when free agency comes.

"To me, it's the whole defense," he said Thursday, according to ESPN's Jenna Laine. "You can't get 'em all, but ... those young guys grew. We can't let that go. I don't care who's my quarterback. We've gotta have a defense."

One of the Buccaneers' main tasks is to re-sign outside linebacker Shaq Barrett. Playing under a one-year, $4-million contract in his first season in Tampa Bay, Barrett led the NFL with 19.5 sacks.

Further, Jason Pierre-Paul, Ndamukong Suh, Carl Nassib, and Beau Allen are all set to become free agents on defense.

Pierre-Paul, Suh, and Nassib combined for 17 sacks in 2019.

The NFC South club has also yet to decide who its starting quarterback will be in 2020, as Jameis Winston is scheduled to hit the open market, too.

Winston, who became the first quarterback ever to throw 30 touchdowns with 30 interceptions during the regular season, has been Tampa Bay's starter in its past five campaigns.

Arians has said his team can "definitely" win without the former first overall pick, who's posted a 28-42 record since 2015.

Teams have until March 10 to place the franchise or transition tag on a player. They then have a three-day legal free-agent tampering period from March 16-18 before free agency kicks off.

"You're just sitting there waiting to see is there someone available? ... Is he a better option?" Arians said.

"And then, that's the problem, you get about three days to decide. The legal tampering period. Is somebody going to get let go? What's the trade values? It's really monotonous right now because you don’t have any answers."

Comments
Bucs' Arians prioritizing defense: 'I don't care who's my quarterback'
  Got something to say? Leave a comment below!
Daily Newsletter
Get the latest trending sports news daily in your inbox