Anthony Barr explains why he came back to Vikings after agreeing to join Jets

The NFL is a high-profile career, with a lot of money involved, but there are still normal human emotions involved when it comes to changing jobs.

It’s rare for someone to break an agreement made during the two days that NFL teams can contact free agents. Free agents agree to switch teams, financial numbers are reported through various media outlets, and just about every time those deals become official on the first day of the NFL’s league year when contracts can be signed.

But linebacker Anthony Barr changed his mind. On Monday night he agreed to go to the New York Jets, who reportedly offered more money than the Minnesota Vikings, his first and only NFL team.

Then, he didn’t feel good about it.

Anthony Barr says it was like he was about to ‘marry the wrong woman’

Barr was on NFL Network explaining his choice, which is rare but understandable.

“It was mostly when I hung up the phone after saying, ‘Yeah I can do New York,’” Barr told NFL Network, via NFL.com. “My stomach dropped, I kind of get some cold sweats.

“It was like you're about to go down the altar and marry the wrong woman. I think I'm making a bad choice. I did what I felt was right for myself.”

Contracts couldn’t be signed until the free agency period began Wednesday afternoon, so Barr wasn’t locked into anything.

19 PHOTOS
NFL players who switched teams this offseason
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NFL players who switched teams this offseason

WR Odell Beckham Jr.

Traded from the New York Giants to the Cleveland Browns

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

RB Le'Veon Bell

Left the Pittsburgh Steelers in free agency to sign with the New York Jets

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

QB Joe Flacco

Traded from the Baltimore Ravens to the Denver Broncos

(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

QB Case Keenum

Traded from the Denver Broncos to the Washington Redskins

(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

WR Antonio Brown

Traded from the Pittsburgh Steelers to the Oakland Raiders

(Photo by Mark Alberti/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

DE Trey Flowers

Left the New England Patriots in free agency to sign with the Detroit Lions

(Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

OT Trent Brown

Left the New England Patriots in free agency to sign with the Oakland Raiders

(Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)

WR Danny Amendola

Left the Miami Dolphins in free agency to join the Detroit Lions

(Charles Trainor Jr./Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)

S Landon Collins

Left the New York Giants in free agency to sign with the Washington Redskins

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

WR DeSean Jackson

Traded from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to the Philadelphia Eagles 

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

OL Terrell Suggs

Left the Baltimore Ravens in free agency to join the Arizona Cardinals

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

RB Frank Gore

Left the Miami Dolphins in free agency to sign with the Buffalo Bills

(Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

QB Nick Foles

Left the Philadelphia Eagles in free agency to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

LB C.J. Mosley

Left the Baltimore Ravens in free agency to sign with the New York Jets

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

WR Jamison Crowder

Left the Washington Redskins in free agency to sign with the New York Jets

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

TE Jesse James

Left the Pittsburgh Steelers in free agency to sign with the Detroit Lions

(Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)

S Eric Weddle

Left the Baltimore Ravens in free agency to sign with the Los Angeles Rams

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

RB Carlos Hyde

Left the Jacksonville Jaguars in free agency to sign with the Kansas City Chiefs

(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)

DE Michael Bennett

Traded from the Philadelphia Eagles to the New England Patriots

(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

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Barr had said before free agency started that he wanted to stay with the Vikings. He had spent five seasons with them, and made four Pro Bowls. It’s a big change to move from Minnesota to New York. He presumably has many relationships in Minnesota, including his teammates and coaches there.

The Vikings came back with a better offer, reportedly still not more than the Jets, but enough for Barr to stay. There’s value in happiness as well.

“And we were able to figure it out,” Barr said on NFL Network. “So I made a commitment to my heart, to myself, to my team and I'm happy to be back here.”

Barr wanted to stay with Vikings

Barr’s change of heart probably still won’t sit too well with the Jets, who thought they had landed a key linebacker and had to change course, or Jets fans. Barr signed a five-year, $67.5 million deal with the Vikings.

Anyone should appreciate the loyalty, however. Barr talked on NFL Network about coming to the Vikings when they were down, and helping lead a turnaround. Minnesota made it to the NFC championship game two seasons ago. He wanted to continue to build something, and not leave his life in Minnesota behind either. It doesn’t sound like his decision had much to do with the Jets.

“I wanted to be a Viking,” Barr said on NFL Network. “It's the team that drafted me five years ago. It’s home. I've done a lot of stuff in the community with my foundation. My teammates are my family, this coaching staff has done so much for me not only as a person, but as a player.”

Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill is sacked by Minnesota Vikings outside linebacker Anthony Barr. (AP)

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Frank Schwabis a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab

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