TAMPA (WFLA) – Throughout his career, Ronde Barber has always looked forward to one day of the week in particular.
The Bucs’ veteran cornerback has woken up on many a Sunday morning in Tampa Bay, feeling pumped up, energetic and excited as he prepared for great moments on the gridiron.
This Sunday is no exception.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Ring of Honor recipient is, once again, excited for game day at Raymond James Stadium as he returns to the place he called home for 16 seasons.
Barber has fond memories of Tampa and can’t wait for halftime as the Bucs host the New York Giants on Sunday where he’ll join his Super Bowl teammates Mike Alstott, Derrick Brooks, John Lynch, Warren Sapp, and Jon Gruden, in a historic moment.
As he takes the field at halftime, he’ll receive what he describes as, “the most meaningful honor.”
According to bucsreport.com, the Bucs Ring of Honor is bestowed upon stellar players with incredible careers who are “part of Buccaneer history” with “stories that need to be told.”
Barber certainly fits that criteria.
Players describe him as a mentor, someone who lives by example.
In fact, Bucs linebacker Lavonte David picked Barber early on as a role model.
“They always tell you, pick a veteran you want to mimic,” David said. “He was one of those guys we watched. We liked the way he carried himself. He was play-maker every time he was out there.”
And, you’ll never guess who used to babysit for Barber.
Buccaneers Head Coach Bruce Arians.
Arians was good friends with Ronde’s father and remembers living next door, often babysitting for Ronde and his sibling, Tiki. “I’m so proud of them both,” Arians said. “After [Ronde’s] honor, the gold jacket can’t be far behind.”