Last Friday, Chase Goodbread of College Football 24/7 ranked on NFL.com his preseason Top 100 rookies of 2016. Three Buccaneers were included in the Top 50.
Vernon Hargreaves III, Noah Spence and Roberto Aguayo checked out at No. 8, No. 21 and No. 46, respectively. Disregarding team needs, that means Goodbread believes the Bucs nabbed two first-round picks and, contrary to public opinion, thinks Aguayo was indeed a priority selection.
Starting at the top, Hargreaves ranked behind Raiders’ safety Karl Joseph, who was No. 5, and Jaguars safety Jalen Ramsey, at No. 7, among rookie defensive backs. That’s a particularly interesting take considering Ramsey was a near consensus top DB prospect prior to the draft. Goodbread said Joseph was ready to fill the void left by future Hall of Famer Charles Woodsen in Oakland, and he called Ramsey a “linchpin” for improvement in Jacksonville.
Here’s his brief bit about the Bucs No. 11 overall selection in April:
Hargreaves will step right into the Bucs’ secondary and can handle whatever is asked, from press coverage to off-man to zone.
(Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire)
Moving down, Spence came in as the fourth ranked defensive end. The former Buckeye and Eastern Kentucky Colonel came in behind San Diego’s Joey Bosa, who ranked 11th, Bills’ Shaq Lawson at No. 12 and 49ers’ DeForest Buckner at No. 14, though reports surfaced Monday that Lawson will undergo surgery on his shoulder. NFL.com holds Spence in higher regard than Emmanuel Ogbah, who was the first pick in the second-round by Cleveland.
Part of their confidence in Spence, however, comes from the notion that he can be eased into the lineup without much pressure. Given the uncertainty and lack of depth outside Spence at defensive end – Robert Ayers and Jacquies Smith – that idea probably doesn’t sit well with Bucs fans that are hoping for the first 10-sack player in 10 years.
Here’s what was written about Spence:
The beauty of the Spence pick for the Bucs is that he doesn’t have to play a ton of snaps to make a big difference, as long as he can get to the quarterback.
Lastly, in between Packers’ defensive tackle Kenny Clark and Rams’ tight end Tyler Higbee, is Aguayo at No. 46. Goodbread seems to trust general manager Jason Licht on this one.
The Bucs traded up to take Aguayo in Round 2, so they expect him to make a big impact right away.
That’s probably an understatement considering the rarity of placing such a high premium on a kicker, and one who’s never kicked in below 50-degree weather to boot. But Licht’s chances in the draft have paid off before, so it seems fair to give all selections the benefit of the doubt heading into the season.
Overall, while none of the Bucs last four picks made the Top 100 cut on NFL.com, the team would probably be pleased if their top three guys made the type of impact this list predicts. At the end of the day, though, draft power rankings are almost as common as mock drafts and just as unpredictable. Expect many more in the months leading up to the 2016 season, but don’t put too much stock into them.
To see the full Top 100, click here
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
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Even though this does not become a real issue until training camp starts, it still amazes me that the Aguayo contract has not been signed!
Come on dude, sign your contract! We gather that you’re a good kicker, but you’re not a 1st round QB. The new CBA has made this very simple – you can’t get more and the Bucs can’t pay you less! The contract has been reduced to a form letter. This is the time of year where questions are raised about the value of even using an agent. A NFLPA union executive said that “a trained monkey could do these contracts.” So what’s the hold up?
(excerpts taken from MMQB) The new system eliminates the vast majority of negotiating required: contract value and bonus amounts are predetermined. There are very few negotiable items: offset language (the ability for the team to recover guaranteed money if the player is released and signs elsewhere), bonus payment terms, roster bonus allocations and other miscellaneous structural issues. Deals are negotiated within hours (Jameis Winston’s deal was negotiated the evening he was taken with the first pick).
The seemingly controversy espoused by some fans over your draft position would have inspired me to be the first one off the board, but now you’re the last and still holding. What’s up with that???
These issues are mostly agent related. I completely understand that as a kicker there should not be any issues or comparisons to other draft picks (as no other kicker was drafted this high) but you mentioned ‘offset language’: he is represented by Jimmy Saxton who I believe represents a ton of current and new players. He might simply advise Roberto to wait for other negotiations of players he represents to complete to make sure non of his representatives sign contracts with clauses which he advised against. I don’t believe you can hold any of this process against Aguayo. Player’s behavior in contract situations, as simple as they might seem under the new CBA, are mostly results of their agents’ strategy.
I agree! This is probably agent related. But the agent works for the player, not the other way around. The agent gives advice, the player gives direction.
As you suggest, it may be something like the presence of offset language. But I can assure you, the player on a first time contract will ultimately lose that battle. QB Marcus Mariota held out until July 21st over offset language and it stayed. It was amended to say he could keep his signing bonus, etc., but his salary was offset.
I’m not slamming Aguayo, It’s optics – the way it looks. When he sits down to sign his contract and he will, it will be the contract that the CBA drew up the first day he was drafted!
I was thinking the same
offset language might actually be more beneficial to a kicker than to other positions. if you are a highly drafted LB or WR and your team cuts you after 2 years, you are almost guaranteed to get another chance somewhere over the following couple of seasons. if you are a kicker and you perform like Kyle Brindza did over a 2 or 3 game stretch, you are toxic and may never put on an NFL helmet again.
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