I have been discouraged most of my life by offseason, considering there is no live football. Over the years I have grown to like many of the events associated with that down time. Free agency is always exciting. It truly is a frenzy. However, the NFL draft is a period in which I have become amazed. The combine leading up to draft day, player evaluation, the theatrics on stage, the storylines, etc.
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One of the most intriguing aspects of the NFL Draft is the War Room. Each team has an office-like room in which they monitor draft selections. One tool utilized in every team’s War Room is the Big Board.
The Big Board is a list of the impending NFL rookie class in which teams order the players from their most valuable pick to least. In some circumstances the players can also be listed by position. If you research this on the internet, there are many accounts of franchises leaking pictures of their big boards. The Cowboys seem to do it almost annually.
I felt like I wanted to take a stab at the Buccaneers Big Board. Like Mock Drafts, my Big Board is most-likely going to be way, way off. Especially after the influence of the NFL Combine this week. Players are likely to move up and down the board due to performances in Indianapolis.
I also want to convey that I am not including players that I believe are not a position of need such as Quarterback or players that I feel will not drop to our selection at nineteen.
I also am not considering the fact that we will trade up or down. Please Jason Licht, do not trade up! There is absolutely no pick in this draft that is worth trading up for, not even Dalvin Cook. I name-dropped because our fan base has an obsession with him. He’s great and I’d love to have him but I’m all-in on Team Doug. Unless he falls right into our laps, of course. Agree to disagree.
Here goes nothing…..
Corey Davis is my #1 target. I have been reviewing game tape for the past few months of all of these players and that’s the guy I think the Bucs should draft, if the opportunity presents itself. He man-handles the defense and has incredible yards after contact. Free agency could shake this pick up. We could take Desean Jackson for example, but this guy could grow with Jameis/Evans and could potentially contribute to the best receiver duo in the league in no time. His level of competition is concerning though.
Ross is a speedster that should compliment Evans, however his injuries are a concern. Both Ramcyzk and Lamp should step right in and compete for a starting spot on the Offensive Line. They could provide depth at the least.
Barnett, Hooker, Mcdowell, and Harris are all great defensive pieces that would fit positions of need. Hooker stands out quite a bit to me and should be a key-piece to the defensive backfield. Barnett is a sleeper Defensive End that will dominate at some point in his career.
I had high hopes for Austin Sefarian-Jenkins. I’m extremely disappointed he turned out to be a teenage frat boy in a man’s body. The potential was there. That is why I have OJ so high, to finish where ASJ left off. He can block and catch. He is one of the few players in this draft that I feel could have an immediate impact.
I wish I could write a detailed description of all of the players listed, but I’m not getting paid enough to do so. It seems fairly clear on my Big Board that I am focusing on Offense for the most part. Weapons for Winston needs to be the #1 priority this offseason. We all saw how he performed in 2015 with an excellent supporting cast. Any one of these players should immediately boost the injury-inflicted Offense of 2016.
I intend on updating this over the next six weeks. This year’s draft is loaded with talent and a lot will change by then. This is where I stand today in regards to the Draft and I recommend doing your own Big Board to see how it will compare to the end results.
Now let’s fill some holes in Free Agency so we can attack this thing in April with the Best Player Available approach. It’s been a while since Tampa has been in position to do so.