Chris Baker (defensive lineman)

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Chris Baker
refer to caption
Baker with the Washington Redskins in 2016
No. 90 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Position: Defensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1987-10-08) October 8, 1987 (age 29)
Place of birth: Windsor, Connecticut
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight: 320 lb (145 kg)
Career information
High school: Windsor (CT)
College: Hampton
Undrafted: 2009
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
  • First-team All-MEAC (2008)
Career NFL statistics as of 2016
Tackles: 181
Quarterback sacks: 11.5
Pass deflections: 5
Forced fumbles: 5
Player stats at

Christopher Isaiah Baker (born October 8, 1987), nicknamed "Swaggy",[1] is an American football defensive tackle for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL). After the 2009 NFL Draft, Baker was signed by the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent. He played college football at Hampton University. He played high school football at Windsor High School. Baker has also been a member of the Miami Dolphins, Hartford Colonials, and Washington Redskins.

College career[edit]

Baker originally played football collegiately at Pennsylvania State University. After the 2007 season, he was involved in two separate off-campus fights along with nine of his Penn State teammates. On June 26, 2007, Penn State temporarily expelled all ten involved players from July 1 through the end of the summer semester in mid-August.[2] His expulsion was later made permanent.[3] Baker transferred to Hampton University to continue playing football in 2008.[4]

Professional career[edit]

Denver Broncos[edit]

Baker signed with the Denver Broncos on April 27, 2009.[5] He played one game for the Broncos for the 2009 season. On September 3, 2010, the Broncos released Baker.

Miami Dolphins[edit]

On October 10, 2010, Baker was signed to the practice squad of the Miami Dolphins. He was promoted to the active 53-man roster on November 26, 2010. He played one game for the Dolphins in the 2010 season. The Dolphins released him on July 31, 2011.

Washington Redskins[edit]

2011 season[edit]

On September 5, 2011, the Washington Redskins signed Baker to its practice squad. On December 6, 2011, Baker was promoted from the practice squad to the active 53-man roster.[6] Without even playing a game for the Redskins, he was placed on injured reserve due to a quad injury on December 13, 2011.[7]

2012 season[edit]

By the start of 2012 training camp, Baker was fully healed and was expected to compete with Chris Neild for the backup nose tackle position.[8][9] After Neild was placed on injured reserve in the preseason, Baker made the final 53-man roster in his place.

2013 season[edit]

Baker with the Redskins in 2013

Originally set to become a restricted free agent, the Redskins tendered a restricted free-agent right-of-first-refusal qualifying offer to Baker on March 11, 2013.[10] Baker officially accepted and signed the team's tender on April 10.[11] He recorded his first career sack on Jay Cutler in the Week 7 win against the Chicago Bears.[12][13]

2014 season[edit]

Set to become a restricted free agent again for the 2014 season, the Redskins announced they had re-signed Baker to a three-year deal worth $12 million, with $4 million guaranteed.[14] He would switch from the starting left defensive end position to the nose tackle position after starter Barry Cofield was placed on short-term injured reserve.[15] During a game against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 21, 2014, Baker hit Eagles quarterback Nick Foles following an interception (which eventually was reversed) by Foles. Foles was jogging towards the player who had intercepted his pass when Baker made a hard block on Foles. Following the hit, a brawl broke out on the sidelines between both teams. Baker was confronted by Eagles offensive tackle Jason Peters with Baker clamping the face mask of Peters in retaliation and with Peters taking a swing at Baker which resulted in both players getting ejected in the scuffle. After the game, Baker responded to the incident saying, "I didn't even really hit him hard. I just hit him with my shoulder and he happened to fall. He's the quarterback and I guess that's why there was an ejection." Despite conflicting opinions on whether on the block was legal or not,[16] he was fined $8,268 for the fight with Peters.[17] On October 17, 2014, Baker was fined $10,000 for dragging down Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer in the face mask during the Week 6 loss.[18]

2015 season[edit]

Baker's gameplay in the 2015 surprisingly progressed so much that he beat out newly free agent acquisition, Stephen Paea, for the starting left defensive end position.[19][20] In the Week 4 win against the Eagles, he recorded two sacks on quarterback Sam Bradford, which was his first multi-sack game.[21] At the end of the regular season, he recorded a new career-high of six sacks, which earned him the $280,000 bonus in his contract.[19]

Tampa Bay Buccaneers[edit]

On March 9, 2017, Baker signed a three-year contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.[22]


Baker has been childhood friends with nose tackle Terrance Knighton and Damik Scafe since high school, where the three of them were teammates.[23] Knighton was Baker's best man in his wedding to ESPN talent producer, Jamila Phillips, on March 14, 2015.[24]

On January 7, 2016, Baker's first child, Aria, was born.[25]

Legal issues[edit]

While attending Penn State, Baker was sentenced to two years of probation after pleading guilty two cases of assault on May 16, 2008.[26]


  1. ^ Kring-Schreifels, Jake. "Chris 'Swaggy' Baker Recalls The Favorite Moment In His Career". Retrieved 23 June 2016. 
  2. ^ Armas, Genaro (June 26, 2007). "Penn State disciplines 10 players for off-campus fight". Retrieved 2014-07-04. 
  3. ^ Jones, Mike (October 27, 2013). "Game day Q&A: Chris Baker on a football career that almost didn't happen". Retrieved 2014-07-04. 
  4. ^ Friedman, Vicki (October 4, 2008). "NSU, Hampton give players a second chance". Retrieved 2014-07-04. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Jones, Mike (December 6, 2011). "Redskins promote NT Chris Baker to 53-man roster". Retrieved 2011-12-06. 
  7. ^ Jones, Mike (December 13, 2011). "Chris Baker to IR; Richard Quinn signed". Retrieved 2011-12-13. 
  8. ^ Jones, Mike (August 2, 2012). "Redskins training camp: Chris Baker is aiming for a spot in defensive line rotation". Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  9. ^ Yanda, Steve (August 3, 2012). "Redskins training camp: Chris Neild is in tough competition with Chris Baker at nose tackle". Retrieved 2012-08-03. 
  10. ^ Jones, Mike (March 11, 2013). "Redskins tender restricted free agent Chris Baker, will let Brandon Banks walk". Retrieved 2013-03-11. 
  11. ^ Campbell, Rich (April 10, 2013). Redskins DL Chris Baker signs his restricted free agent tender. Retrieved 2013-05-14. 
  12. ^ Tinsman, Brian (October 21, 2013). "Redskins-Bears Monday Stats Pack". Retrieved 2013-11-11. 
  13. ^ Zappulla, Jordan (October 22, 2013). "Sunday's Win Chock-Full Of Redskins Firsts". Retrieved 2013-11-12. 
  14. ^ Jones, Mike (February 27, 2014). "Redskins re-sign defensive lineman Chris Baker". Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-02-27. 
  15. ^ El-Bashir, Tarik (September 10, 2014). "Chris Baker to replace Barry Cofield at nose tackle". Retrieved 2014-12-23. 
  16. ^
  17. ^ Patra, Kevin (September 26, 2014). "Jason Peters, Chris Baker fined for Week 3 fight". Retrieved 2014-12-23. 
  18. ^ Smith, Michael (October 17, 2014). "Chris Baker fined for facemasking Carson Palmer". Retrieved 2014-12-23. 
  19. ^ a b Keim, John (January 4, 2016). "Redskins DE Chris Baker cashes in with sacks". Retrieved January 10, 2016. 
  20. ^ Walker, Andrew (November 14, 2015). "Swaggy's Surge: Chris Baker Showing His Worth". Retrieved January 10, 2016. 
  21. ^ "Redskins-Eagles Monday Stats Pack". October 5, 2015. Retrieved January 10, 2016. 
  22. ^ Smith, Scott (March 9, 2017). "Bucs Nab DT Chris Baker, Help Defense Too". 
  23. ^ Herting, Chris (March 22, 2013). "Friends' Pact Turns Dream Come True". Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  24. ^ Robertson, Erin (March 16, 2015). "Redskins lineman Chris Baker weds ESPN's Jamila Phillips at the W Hotel". Retrieved 2015-07-30. 
  25. ^ Kring-Schreifels, Jake (January 7, 2016). "Chris Baker Welcomes Baby Girl To The World". Retrieved January 10, 2016. 
  26. ^ "Penn State tackle pleads guilty, gets two years probation". May 16, 2008. Retrieved 2014-07-04. 

External links[edit]