Christian Barmore played 55% of the defensive snaps for the Patriots during his rookie season last year. Stew Milne/Associated Press

Newly enshrined Pro Football Hall of Famer Richard Seymour sees greatness ahead for Christian Barmore.

For a defensive lineman, if Seymour’s in your corner, there are few better compliments or endorsements.

The Patriots great, a cornerstone of Bill Belichick’s first three Super Bowl defenses, tuned in to watch his former team quite a bit last season. And the rookie from the University of Alabama immediately caught his eye.

Barmore posted the second-most quarterback pressures for a first-year defensive tackle since 2006, according to Pro Football Focus. His 48 pressures were two more than Aaron Donald had during his rookie season.

Based on what Seymour has already seen, he believes Barmore is poised to be even more of a nightmare for opposing quarterbacks during his second season.

“I think he has a ton of ability, natural ability, and he plays hard,” Seymour told the Boston Herald recently. “I think he’s going to be a problem for (opposing teams) for a long time to come. Hopefully he stays healthy and continues on the path he’s on. I think he has a really bright future.”


The way Barmore has looked thus far in training camp, Seymour’s take is spot-on. The 2021 second-round pick has been dominant during many of the padded practices.

Barmore has been a beast in 1-on-1 competitions against the offensive linemen, and he’s also been a huge disruptor in the trenches during team drills. Right now, he oozes the potential to be a bona fide game-wrecker.

The 6-foot-5, 310-pound defensive tackle told the media he’s been doing a lot more cardio work – running and sled work – to get himself in better condition. That bodes well if the Patriots plan on using him as a three-down player.

With the Patriots secondary having some questions at cornerback, Barmore’s continued emergence as an interior pass-rusher would go a long way toward helping out the coverage players.

Even though Seymour did most of his damage on the outside as a defensive end, gaining entry into the Hall on Saturday for his overall impact and dominance on three championship teams, he understands what it takes to disrupt, take on double-teams and just be a royal pain to the quarterback from anywhere on the line.

He fully believes Barmore will continue to hone his skills and be a force to be reckoned with this season and beyond.


“He’s long, he’s explosive, he’s strong, he has good lateral movement,” said Seymour. “He can collapse the pocket. He has the ability to overpower a lot of guards that he plays against, and also has the speed to get to the quarterback. I’ve really been impressed by this kid.”

Lofty praise coming from Seymour, a seven-time Pro Bowler and three-time first-team All-Pro player.

And once again, seeing how Barmore has stood out in camp with his power and first-step explosiveness, shooting by any and all offensive linemen in his path, the bar has been raised significantly for the second-year defensive tackle.

During an interview with SiriusXM’s Jim Miller and Pat Kirwan, who were on hand for Monday’s first padded practice, even Patriots Coach Bill Belichick said Barmore was already “way ahead” of where he was last year.

And given how good he looks, how hard he’s worked on his conditioning, Barmore is poised to make a Year 2 leap, and then some.

Said Seymour: “I think he has all the tools in the toolbox to be one of the best interior linemen in the league.”


During the week, Barmore got into some specifics about his offseason routine, and how he’s striving to be the best.

“I was training in Texas in the heat. A lot of running, more of cardio than anything, and a lot of work in footwork drills,” he said Wednesday. “I rode the bike, ran the hill, and did a lot of curve drills like running (through the) bags. Did a lot of suicides. That’s my style.”

After Barmore played just over 55% of the defensive snaps last year, Belichick wants more from his young lineman. Barmore has done his best to oblige.

“I’m way more comfortable now than how I was last year. Faster … literally getting better every day,” Barmore said. “I feel way more better in my conditioning, I feel like it increased well.”

For him to be more of an every-down defender, though, Barmore needs to do a better job against the run. That’s the one area he’s zeroed in on this year. The Patriots, as a whole, also want to take it up a notch after allowing 126.5 yards per game, 24th in the NFL last season.

“Get better on the run, that’s my No. 1 goal. Literally everywhere I play, dominate the run,” he said. “Playing the stretch (run) better, playing the run a little better, is really my No. 1 goal. Just getting better with playing the run and footwork and everything.”


If Barmore can help seal the middle during running downs, look for him to be an every-down player this season.

Along with Seymour, Patriots Hall of Fame safety Rodney Harrison is another huge fan. He also sees a bright future for the young star.

“I think he’s going to be their best defensive lineman. This kid, he’s big, he’s athletic, and he works hard,” Harrison said when reached recently. “He’s a grinder. I like Christian Barmore. He was dominant last year.”

Even though Barmore would like to do a better job at finishing off those pressures and getting the quarterback down, Harrison still sees all of those hurries as a positive.

“You sit back and talk about sacks, but it’s those pressures, those hurries, that are so key,” said Harrison. “Even a guy like Maxx Crosby (of the Raiders), he’s not getting to the quarterback in terms of sacks, like T.J. Watt, but he’s constantly getting those pressures, and those things are underrated.”

Pro Football Focus ranked Barmore No. 2 behind Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence as being the mostly likely candidate to make a Year 2 leap.

Of late, it’s hard to find anyone who would argue.

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