When the Buccaneers drafted Sean Murphy-Bunting with the 39th pick of the 2019 NFL Draft, many were scratching their heads, some rejoiced, but no one knew just how exciting he would be. What many missed about him being selected 39th overall was the fact that Murphy-Bunting, per Carmen Vitali of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, is only the 3rd cornerback from Central Michigan to ever be selected in the NFL draft (Jim Bowman – Patriots1985 / Kavon Frazier-Cowboys in 2016). Murphy-Bunting started out his rookie season slowly due to Hargreaves still being on Tampa’s roster; however, he occasionally got his reps, and once Hargreaves was benched then eventually waived, Murphy-Bunting got his chance to shine. And shine he did.
Active in all 16 games, starting in 10, Murphy-Bunting recorded 3 interceptions (tied for 1st among all rookies 2019) for 88-yards (lead all rookies 2019) and 1 touchdown (tied for first among all rookies and his 70-yard interception for a touchdown lead all rookies in 2019), 11 passes defended (tied for 3rd among all rookies 2019), 1 forced fumble (tied for 3rd among all rookies 2019), 1 sack, and 44 combined tackles, which include 37 of them being solo tackles. His rookie performance did not go unnoticed as he was named, along with Devin White, to the NFL’s All-Rookie Team by Chris Wesseling.
The 2020 season hasn’t even kicked off, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have gone through substantial changes. From allowing Jameis Winston to go to free agency and the signing of Tom Brady, to Chris Godwin giving his new quarterback his jersey number 12 and taking on the number 14. Sean Murphy-Bunting’s number has changed to 23! Additionally, Carlton Davis will be wearing the number 24, and John Franklin will wear Perriman’s old number 19. Newcomer Joel Haeg will keep the number 73 he has worn for a while in Indy, and Andrew Adams will revert back to the number 26 he wore when he first arrived in Tampa.
26 🔜 23🔥🤟🏽
— Sean Murphy-Bunting (@MrSeanyB1) March 31, 2020
Here is S-M-B showing off his new threads!
SMB in 23 is gonna be 🔥🔥🔥 https://t.co/hskXUqQ5We
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@Buccaneers) April 7, 2020