One of the greatest Buccaneers in franchise history is getting his name forever displayed on the walls of Raymond James Stadium in the Bucs Ring of Honor.

Tampa Bay announced on Tuesdaythat cornerback, later turned safety, Ronde Barber will be the newest addition to the Bucs Ring of Honor that pays tribute to players who excelled on the field. It was revealed the induction will take place at halftime of Tampa Bay’s game against the New York Giants on September 22.

Barber, a third-round draft pick in 1997, played 16 years in Tampa Bay where he recorded 1,231 tackles, 166 pass deflections, had 47 interceptions, 28 sacks, 15 forced fumbles and scored 14 touchdowns – 12 of which came on defense.

Legendary Bucs CB Ronde Barber
Legendary Bucs CB Ronde Barber – Photo by: Getty Images

None of his interceptions were more important than the one that came in the 2002 NFC Championship game. That 92-yard interception return for a touchdown of a Donovan McNabb pass propelled the Bucs to their first and only Super Bowl appearance in 2002.

The Bucs beat the Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII for their only championship, and while Hall of Fame linebacker Derrick Brooks and Hall of Fame defensive tackle Warren Sapp get the bulk of the credit, Barber was a key component on a defense that was one of the best in the NFL for several years under legendary defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin. Barber is now eligible for his own induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but was not one of the finalists last year, which was his first year of eligibility.

Barber was a five-time Pro Bowler (2001, 2004-06, 2008), a three-time first-team All-Pro (2001, 2004, 2005) and a two-time second-team All-Pro (2002, 2006), in addition to being a member of the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team, which is of great importance to the Hall of Fame voters. Barber also led the league in interceptions in 2001 with a career-high 10.

Barber’s Tampa Bay career got off to an unimpressive start in 1997, as he only played in one game as a rookie, collecting just three tackles. Things began to change in 1998 when Barber found his footing – and a role as a nickel cornerback on third downs and obvious passing downs – in Monte Kiffin’s Tampa 2 defense. Barber started nine games that season, but played in all 16, and recorded 67 tackles, three sacks, two interceptions and two forced fumbles.

Barber continued to evolve as a player through four different coaches, and in 2012 officially switched from cornerback to safety under Greg Schiano and had a solid season, notching 91 tackles, 13 passes breakups and four interceptions.

Following the 2012 season, Barber announced his retirement and took a job that he continues to hold today as a color commentator for FOX Sports’ NFL broadcasts, in addition to serving in that role for the Bucs’ preseason TV broadcasts on WFLA News Channel 8.

On Tuesday Bucs co-chairman Bryan Glazer released this statement on the upcoming induction.

“Rondé Barber personified greatness on and off the field during his 16 seasons as a Buccaneer and we look forward to honoring his remarkable career this upcoming season. His achievements are as impressive as they are long, but Rondé ’s most defining qualities were his ultra-competitive nature, his passion for this game, and his love of the Tampa Bay community.”

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Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]

12 COMMENTS

  1. Congrats Ronde Barber! Ronde you have earned it. Thank you for the years of memories and interesting insights from an NFL player;s perspective. Thanks!

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  2. Well Deserved and Long Overdue! Congratulations, Ronde! I can still close my eyes and see you taking the McNabb INT to the house, closing out the Vet and all the way to Super Bowl XXXVII!

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  3. Never get tired of watching the interception return against Philly, thanks!

    Congrats to Rhonde and hope he gets the nod for HOF induction!

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  4. In which game? Is that known yet?

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  5. Congratulations Ronde! You da’ man! There has never been another one who did what you did playing at your position!

    __________
    To all you young fans (say, under 25),

    Learn to never judge any player after just one year in the NFL. It does not matter where they were drafted or even if they were UDFA. Some will flash spectacular and then flop. Some will show little or even only get a limited number appearances then they will emerge to great things later.

    Don’t take seriously the opinions of short sighted fans or pundits who have a short attention span. Ronde Barber is one of many great examples for all of us!

    For what it is worth. Just another old f*rt spouting off.
    ______________________
    Culture Change, Team=>Fans
    Go Bucs!!!!! Win Now!

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  6. I remember being at training camp in Disney when Ronde was at the peak of his career. After a long hot practice Ronde came over to sign autographs for a bunch of kids I happened to be standing by. I said how nice it was for him a star to come over after a hot practice and give his time to these kids. He said to me, I’d be nothing without the fans, and this is the least I could do. I was wearing a Buc bucket hat, and he said give me that thing, and signed it. After a game our family went to Ronde threw his visor up into the crowd as he ran into the tunnel. My late son caught it, and the joy that brought him that day Ill never forget. He was a kid then, one of the highlights of his life. I lost him at age 23. Needless to say I have both hats, and Ronde will always have a special place in my heart. Congrats Bro, you earned every honor the Bucs can give you. My favorite all time Buc.

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  7. Great choice, you can’t tell the story of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or our Super Bowl win without Ronde Barber. Hopefully the Hall of Fame is next, he is very deserving. 47 interceptions, 28 sacks, 14 touchdowns. He has the stats and certainly passed the eye test as well as being a crucial part of a Super Bowl winning team known for their legendary defense.

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  8. Amazing player, well deserving of this award. I just hope Buc Ass Bob does not show up and somehow drag this down as well.

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  9. I don’t know how many times I said, “It’s always Ronde” after #20 made yet another great play.

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  10. Congratulations!

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  11. I wanted to come down for this game why in gods name did it have to be in Sept? haha

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  12. What can you say about Barber? Just the best. Such a well rounded football player. Rush the passer, great cover guy; great tackler. Will always remember the pick six in Philly. Biggest play in franchise history and it’s not even close.

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