It’s almost NFL Combine time, which means teams are going to be evaluating some ideal Buccaneer targets for the upcoming draft. The Combine is being held in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis starting Saturday, February 23rd, and ending Monday, March 2nd. During this time frame, teams will be interviewing players, watching them perform in drills, and grading them accordingly. Here is a list of 5 players that I feel the Bucs should scout and hopefully target in April’s Draft.
First off, let’s start with the offense. Tampa Bay last season had a subpar offense overall when it came to the running game and protecting the quarterback. As of now, it looks like Demar Dotson’s days as a Buc starter are numbered, seeing as he’s been holding down a roster spot since 2009.
Seeing an offense giving up 47 sacks on a quarterback, that is a risk when it comes to holding on to the ball. Also, having a mediocre running game doesn’t help matters much, either, especially when you’re only averaging 95.1 yards per game. For that reason, I would look at Alabama OT Jedrick Wills, Houston OT Josh Jones, and/or Georgia OT Andrew Thomas.
Now, let’s jump to the defensive side of the ball. The defense had tremendous success stopping the run and a tremendously hard time stopping the pass. With reports swirling of Jason Pierre-Paul and the team possibly parting ways, along with the possibility of Ndamukong Suh also leaving, it’ll be important to keep the core together.
In hope of re-signing the franchise’s single-season “Sack Master” Shaq Barrett to a deal, the first defensive player I’d scout is Alabama’s OLB Anfernee Jennings, who could easily be a plug and play in Bowle’s defense and could be a younger version of JPP.
With cries for safety support, the Bucs have a lot riding in that position. There’s really only one player I feel worth looking at since safety would possibly be addressed in later rounds, so with my pick, I’d choose Clemson S K’Von Wallace.
It’s going to be an interesting week in Indy evaluating talent for the upcoming draft along with the selections that will follow in April when the Draft goes live for the former college standouts with dreams of making it to the pros.