UCLA defensive tackle Brian Price with the 35th overall pick. Four picks later Tampa Bay traded up with the Oakland Raiders to select Illinois wide receiver Arrelious Benn. With the 67th overall pick in the third round Tampa Bay selected Vanderbilt cornerback Myron Lewis. On Thursday the Bucs took Oklahoma defensive tackle Gerald McCoy with the third-overall pick.
Below are Dominik's answers to media questions and comments. The media's remarks appear in bold. Dominik's answer follows.
On how he felt the draft has went so far.
"I think every general manager stands up here and feels good about what they have done up to this point. I certainly do. The draft class we're putting together right now, and were looking forward to utilize the picks we have. I would say that young men that we drafted are consistent to what we have preached about in terms of their performance not only on the field but off the field. These are some great young kids and I think when you meet them, the more you'll understand why we're not only excited to draft them as football players, but a part of the community and part of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers."
On the decision to take two defensive tackles early in the draft.
"People have been named quarterback collectors; I guess I am a defensive tackle collector. We brought him in as one of our 30 player visits, and we spoke to him about being a nose tackle, a three technique, and rushing the passer. We're very excited about Roy Miller, Brian Price, and all of our defensive tackles. We play in Florida in the heat. We have not had a good pass rusher on this team. When you look at Brian Price's statistics and production and the way he played in college, you a very powerful, explosive young guy. In this system we believe he can play the three techniques, and you can take him outside to play some end in certain situations. The idea is to take advantage of being a better pass rushing football team. You try to stay to stay true to the board. Brian Price was very high on our board. It made sense and that's why we were trying to be proactive in terms of bringing him in."
On the type of defensive tackles they look for.
We want tough physical pass rushers. We know that Roy Miller is that, and we are confident that Brian Price can do be the same.
On the apprehension of drafting a wide receiver early in the draft.
There was some apprehension. Last year we traded up twice for Josh Freeman, and for Kyle Moore. I don't think there was any secret that Tampa Bay was looking for wide receivers. But that's part of poker and that's what you have to do sometimes in the National Football League. We felt that Benn was clearly the highest rated receiver on the board. I think he justified that because how long it took for another receiver to come of the board. You do your homework and try to look around the league. I knew our pick was about to come up, so I felt it was worthwhile to get the guy we wanted.
On if he had any offers for the 35th overall selection.
We fielded phone calls, but in the end we decided to stick with Brian Price because it was great value and that he would be a good edition to this football team.
His thoughts on Lewis.
“Myron is going to play corner for us. Some people out there talked about him as a safety. He is a corner for us. He is a big, tall, athletic corner. He’s got good ball skills. He‘s a good tackler. He is a great kid off the field as well. He has very good feet for such a big man. Part of what we want to do around here is build a bigger football team. We did that today with his selection as well. We are excited for him. We see him coming in right away this year and competing for the nickel outside job. We hope he does a good job. We obviously selected him to do so.”
Do you think that Lewis can replace Ronde Barber as a starter when he decides to retire.
"I hope that Myron Lewis comes in here and competes and can earn a job like that. Ronde Barber has been a great football player for the Bucs."
You and head coach Raheem Morris talked about creating pass rush, yet an edge rusher has not been addressed.
"We look at it as Stylez White is on the right side. Tim Crowder did a good job for us last year. A young man that we picked up named Michael Bennett did a good job for us. We are looking forward to Kyle Moore contributing a lot more for us from either the right or left end position where he is a hybrid that can line up at both spots. We expect those young men to step up, and certainly we have some more selections to help this football team."
Do you envision a three-man rotation between McCoy, Miller, and Price?
"Depending on how we address the defensive line, yes. That's the idea. We want to get back to what we've done before in the past. We've had a lot of success over the years in terms of rotating the defensive linemen and take advantage of people's stamina in our heat, in terms of our football team. We're looking forward to that."
A lot of these players have a connection to Morris from his year in college. How much of an influence has he been in terms of how you guys set your board?
"Coach Morris has a lot of influence. Not only just knowing the kids off the field, but coach Morris is a very good talent evaluator. That carries a lot of weight with me when we have discussions about who to select. A lot that went into this draft was getting guys that played at big programs and were three-year starters, and I think we've accomplished that. I don't like potential as much as I like production. I think that's really important when you look at the draft. I think that is where a lot of teams make mistakes. That's why we really focused on, that these players have played a lot of football and have been productive."
Did you think that you could land both McCoy and Price?
"We wanted to be prepared. I think that is the main thing. We wanted to be prepared. We felt like there was an opportunity where Price may fall a bit. Where we certain that he would be there at 35? No, but we certainly wanted to be prepared. That is part of the model. Some clubs take those 30 visits for projected college undrafted free agents and try and recruit. We take those in different capacities. We are trying to prepare for any scenario that may come along. You put together your list so you're ready for those situations when they occur. That was helpful in what [Price] talked about with coach Morris in terms of what his role would be on the defensive line."
Did you have to project some with Benn because of his college production?
"No Benn was very productive in college. This guy was extremely productive. He caught over 60 passes and over 1,000 yards two years ago. This is not an unproductive football player he has been extremely productive. He wanted to duplicate that type of year but it was just unfortunate that things didn't work out with the system that he was in and the quarterback that he had, but we saw a very productive player so it wasn't a projection at all."
How did you like the format of having a night between the first and second round?
"I think it was really good. I had to chance to sit there at 35 and really look at a game plan, also field the offers that we talked about. I'm sure I look like I've spent the night trying to look at the board. That's how I feel right now. It was very good, and we look forward to taking tonight also and really kind of looking at our football team and the players that we've acquired so far and what we can do to make this draft as successful as it can be. I think it was good. I actually really like this three-day format. I'm an advocate for it. I think we should keep it this way going forward. I think it is good TV, but it is also good for clubs and organizations to make sound decisions and get the right players. If we are going to pay these guys we may as well get the right ones."