Former Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett is back in the NFL, this time as a coach.
The Detroit Lions hired Barrett as an offensive assistant Saturday. This comes almost two years after Barrett was waived by the Pittsburgh Steelers before the 2020 season. Barrett had signed with the Edmonton Elks of the Canadian Football League in January, but an injury in March forced him to the retired list.
Barrett signed with the New Orleans Saints after going undrafted in 2018 following an illustrious four-year career at Ohio State. He was slated as a potential Heisman Trophy winner in 2014 before suffering a season-ending injury that led to Cardale Jones leading the Buckeyes to the College Football Playoff national Cchampionship that year. Barrett went 38-6 in four years at Ohio State.
Coincidentally, Barrett started over Joe Burrow in 2016 and 2017. Burrow eventually transferred to LSU in 2018 and went on to lead the Tigers to the College Football Playoff title in 2020 and was picked No. 1 overall by the Cincinnati Bengals the same year.
Barrett bounced between the Saints, Seattle Seahawks and back to the Saints again before landing with the Steelers at the end of the 2019 season. He was cut before the 2020 season and signed on to play for the Spring League later that year.
It's not random that Barrett joined the Lions staff, as he has ties to head coach Dan Campbell during their time together in New Orleans. Campbell was the assistant head coach with the Saints from 2016-20, during which Barrett was a player.
It's unclear exactly what role Barrett will play in Detroit.