Buccaneers draft grading: first three rounds

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Let’s just say how the Buccaneers did in the NFL draft and my high school math skills have something in common. A bad grade.

Going off the players taken in the draft in the first three rounds. I give the Buccaneers a ‘D+’. A very lowly, worse than average, just like my days back in Algebra 2, D+.

Let’s start with the top pick, Mike Evans. He is basically Vincent Jackson 2.0. Big, tall and lengthy. Great! Two of the same style players at the same position. So when defensive coordinators game plan for one, you’ve game planned for them both. This filled a need. A need that could have been filled later because this draft was VERY DEEP at wide receiver this year.

I’ve always believed your pass catchers should bring different skill sets to the table from each other, to be more lethal on offense and harder to game plan against. One deep threat, one possession receiver, one speedster, etc. Make coordinators work, mix things up, mix up line-ups in the heat of the battle and mess with the defense, anything to get the upper hand.

It’s now no surprise that quarterback Josh McCown, Mike Glennon or whoever is back in the pocket come week one, is just going to stand back and throw up a jump ball when needed.

Once that deep ball dimension is eliminated by the defense. This offense is going nowhere. To those who are thrilled about this duo of Evans and Jackson long term? Let’s be honest. How many more years is Jackson around with #1 wide receiver like play? Jackson will be 32 at the end of the year.

Evans is not an addition to Jackson, Evans is a replacement to Jackson, while filling a need with the departure of Mike Williams. He will just happen to work along side him. I applaud them for filling that need, but this draft was very deep at wide receiver like previously noted. I would have much rather seen them go after other talent early and come back and get pass catchers in rounds three and four. Eight pass catchers were drafted in the second round. That’s a crazy 25% of the round(See, my math isn’t that bad.)

It would’ve been smart to trade down, snagging solid effective impact talent in the middle of the first round, than your wide receiver and extra pick in the second round from the trade, if not more than that. Buffalo traded a hell of a lot to move up for Watkins. You can’t tell me the Buccaneers wouldn’t have gotten something of the same offer. Maybe not as much as what the Bills got, but certainly close.

The quarterback makes the wide receiver. It always has and it always will be that way, especially with the way the league is headed. The wide receiver is a dependable position and not worth a top ten pick anymore in this league. This is why I have such a problem with it. They’re not worth high picks. They can be found elsewhere.

Outside of maybe Blake Bortles. You realistically had ANY quarterback in that draft in your pocket. It’s clear Glennon and McCown is not the future of this team. Manziel, Bridgewater, Carr and others were there for the taking. Buccaneer faithful clearly wanted Manziel. They didn’t get him.

When you name McCown your starter the day sign him, than name Glennon your ‘quarterback of the future’ during your draft day recap press conference. You have no faith long term in either or you have no clue what you’re doing. McCown from day one was a waste of a signing in my eyes so maybe I’m just bias against him.

Evans will be a solid addition, but only cause of need. If Evans doesn’t blossom into a pro bowl superstar, this pick was wasted.

Tampa Bay’s second round pick was used on tight end and again. A big, tall, lengthy one. Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

This pick, I actually don’t mind. Tight ends should be built to be tall, big and the quarterbacks security blanket when the ish hits the fan. That’s what Seferian-Jenkins will be. Again, no surprise that the ball will just be lobbed up to him, but none the less, in the second round. It’s good value. The Buccaneers will have to watch personal legal troubles, although minor, they still linger. I hope he stays out of trouble.

The Buccaneers with the 69th overall pick use it on a running back, making it the first time in franchise history that the Buccaneers go WR-TE-RB with their first three picks.

Why? This fills no need in a crowded backfield (Martin, James, Rainey). Simms will mainly be utilized catching passes out of the backfield from a below average, poorly guarded quarterback. This also means Tampa Bay, while rotating solid running backs and utilizing the ‘three headed monster’ style, will very well be in the situation of cutting a very talented running back.

In the end. I just didn’t see the Buccaneers become that much better a team from before the draft, to after the draft. Sure they got better. Just the naturally of acquiring talent makes you better. But they made great leaps in free agency.

This draft however was nothing but a small hop.

@RonnieKRadio I would give them a C-. The WR and TE were great picks but they made such a bad pick with the HB I cant give them a better gd

— Geoffrey Godfrey (@gunner702) May 10, 2014

Every Buccaneers draft pick was an offensive player. Just what you would expect from Lovie Smith, haha.

— Bart Hubbuch (@HubbuchNYP) May 10, 2014

 

Want more Tampa Bay info? Follow along and tweet me and let’s chat Buccaneers. @RonnieKRadio#TampaBayBuccaneers #Bucs #NFL @cover32_TB

— Ronnie K (@RonnieKRadio) May 10, 2014

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  • Earl

    Your column here is very laughable. You and some of the quotes you have here must be a troll. I am not making my affection for the Bucs cloud my response but this article is garbage. If just going into the draft, you can find a wide receiver with a different skill set than VJ, why pick one. With Murphy, Hawkins, Owusu, Page, Streeter and a couple other no-names, you have size, speed and everything in-between. You have that in the draft. Jackson will have a large cap space next year. Although the league will bump the cap up, the Bucs could be entertaining not bringing him back, thus you have Evans with one year under his belt.

    As for Austin Jenkins, you mean to tell me that you would feel comfortable with Wright, Myers, Crabtree, and Stocker? Crabtree and/or Stocker may be the odd man out. Three 6’5″ or taller pass catchers! As a defensive coordinator, who do you game plan for? All of them! we’re not going to talk about the slot guys like Demps and Herron since your article is about the first three picks.

    As for Sims, you totally missed the boat! Shortly after Lovie took over, he stated that he was walking down the halls of One Buc Place and he saw Barron and Goldson walking down the hall. He thought they were two of his linebackers. He then said he walked into the running backs meeting and asked if the requirement to be in here is that you had to be 5’8″ or smaller. Besides Mike James who is 5’11”, there was no one in that room who could move a pile on a 3rd and 1! James is coming off a serious ankle break and there is no time table as to when or if he will return. Remember Michael Smith? There was word coming out of the first few mini-camps that Doug Martin was dropping passes. In his shorts! Jeff Demps dropped a sure touchdown pass That Lovie got on him about! Henceforth Sims who has over 200 receiving catches in his college career and also have breakaway speed. I have not read one of the so-called experts in print or on TV give the Bucs a grade lower than a B-. In fact, every critique I’ve seen on the Bucs first three picks have been at least a B+ or A- and you have the nerve to write this article and give them a D+. With that said, I say again, your article is laughable and your opinion is not shared by the masses.

  • Anonymous

    You didn’t read the article fully and just the first few lines. Your first paragraph is hard to even make sense of and you make my point exactly when I say Evans is a replacement to Jackson when you say “the Bucs could be entertaining not bringing him back, thus you have Evans with one year under his belt.”

    On ASJ. Once again. Read. I like the pick.
    “Tampa Bay’s second round pick was used on tight end and again. A big, tall, lengthy one. Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

    This pick, I actually don’t mind. Tight ends should be built to be tall, big and the quarterbacks security blanket when the ish hits the fan. That’s what Seferian-Jenkins will be. Again, no surprise that the ball will just be lobbed up to him, but none the less, in the second round. It’s good value.”

    Lastly on Simms. You just said they don’t have anyone to move the pile on short yardage.. So Simms is suppose to solve that? He’s not that guy. You now need to cut a talented back because you’re clearly not keeping 4. Lastly, I’m not here to agree with ‘the masses.’ Agreeing with the masses is boring. I’m here for opinion and not to just brownie cover crap to the sake of it. Giving the Bucs a “A-” would be nothing more than a fan showing colors.

    Wide receivers that produce are everywhere. They don’t need to be drafted with the seventh pick in this era of the NFL anymore… Last year was pure evidence. Go look back at all the wide receivers that caught over 100 passes last year. Go look at the rounds they were drafted in. 6th, 6th, 1st, 7th and 4th.

    Should’ve used the pick for other talent or traded down. You don’t need prime talent to find production at that position. Last year was proof.