It is NFL Draft season and the mock drafts from the NFL experts and pundits are being published nearly every day and making their picks for the Bucs. Each week until the 2020 NFL Draft in April, PewterReport.com will scour the Internet to find the list of players that are projected to Tampa Bay and put out the list with the links.
PewterReport.com – Jon Ledyard Bucs’ First Round Pick: South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw Bucs’ Second Round Pick: LSU RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire “Kinlaw to the Bucs has been a trendy fit – he was Tampa Bay’s selection in PewterReport.com’s initial 2020 Bucs’ 7-Round Mock Draft in early January – but with good reason. He fills a big position of need even if Ndamukong Suh does return (it’ll only be on a short deal, and his pass rush prowess is all but gone), and he completes what will be a fearsome defensive line when/if Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul get re-signed. The Bucs desperately need that with a young secondary that is still gelling together in the defensive backfield.
“Some would consider a safety here, but I’m still holding out hope for Justin Evans’ return in 2020. Let’s wait a bit to see how he’s faring before we go all in on Xavier McKinney at No. 14. Others might want a tackle, and I’m open to that strategy for sure, but it’s a deep class at the position and Demar Dotson can likely be brought back pretty easily on a one-year deal.
“I love the pick of Kinlaw because he’s the exact type of penetrating player the Bucs would want next to Vita Vea long-term, and he won’t have to play major snaps as a rookie, which gives him time to develop from the neck up under the tutelage of defensive line coach Kacy Rodgers.” – Jon Ledyard
CBS Sports – Chris Trapasso Bucs’ First Round Pick: South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw “How about a Tampa Bay defensive front with Shaq Barrett, Vita Vea, and Kinlaw. Studly.How about a Tampa Bay defensive front with Shaq Barrett, Vita Vea, and Kinlaw. Studly.” – Chris Trapasso
CBS Sports – Ryan Wilson Bucs’ First Round Pick: Iowa OT Tristan Wirfs “Wirfs was dominant last season and he can play either right or left tackle. In Tampa, Demar Dotson will be a free agent in March and Donovan Smith signed an extension that will keep him in Tampa through 2021. Now the Bucs just need to settle on a quarterback. QB Jordan Love makes some sense here, but if the Bucs prefer a veteran (whether it’s Jameis Winston or, say, Philip Rivers), Love wouldn’t likely be targeted this high.” – Ryan Wilson
NFL.com – Charley Casserly Bucs’ First Round Pick: Iowa OT Tristan Wirfs “I believe the QB question will be solved before the draft, either by retaining Jameis Winston or bringing in another veteran signal-caller in free agency. Regardless of who ends up under center, the Bucs need help at right tackle.” – Charley Casserly
TheDraftNetwork.com – Benjamin Solak Bucs’ First Round Pick (Pick 12, From Las Vegas): Washington QB Jacob Eason “With a wild run on QBs early in this draft, you’ve got to go after your guy as quickly as possible — especially with a team like Indianapolis sitting at No. 13, with the potential to grab a developmental QB behind Jacoby Brissett if they want it.
“So Bruce Arians goes and gets his guy, and sometimes, it’s that simple. Arians has been tethered to Jacob Eason from the beginning, as his height/weight/arm length profile places him firmly in the bucket of Arians-style passers. Eason wouldn’t be a Round 1 player for most teams, but as Tampa Bay tries to figure out life after Winston, perhaps it pairs Eason with a veteran QB (Rivers?) to work into the starting gig.” – Benjamin Solak
WalterFootball.com – Charley Campbell Bucs’ First Round Pick: LSU OLB K’Lavon Chaisson Bucs’ Second Round Pick: Washington QB Jacob Eason “Tampa Bay is going to be hard pressed to sign the defensive free agents it wants to retain while also paying a quarterback. Jason Pierre-Paul could be an odd man out, which would open up a need for an edge rusher. Chaisson’s athletic versatility would be a nice fit in Todd Bowles defense.
“Chaisson (6-4, 250) has a lot of upside to fill out his frame and develop into a dangerous edge rusher. He is fast, long, and athletic on the edge. In 2019, he had 60 tackles with 6.5 sacks, a forced fumble and two passes broken up while dealing with an ankle injury. Chaisson missed almost all of his 2018 season with a knee injury. In 2017, he had 27 tackles with two sacks and two passes batted.” – Charlie Campbell
Pro Football Focus – Mike Renner Bucs’ First Round Pick: South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw Bucs’ Second Round Pick: TCU DT Ross Blacklock “At 6-foot-5, 315 pounds, with 34-plus inch arms, Kinlaw is a specimen at the defensive tackle position. He doesn’t even have that many pass-rusio State WR hing moves yet and still put up a 90.7 pass-rushing grade last year in the SEC” – Mike Renner
The Draft Wire – Luke Easterling Bucs’ First Round Pick: South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw Bucs’ Second Round Pick: Ohio State RB J.K. Dobbins Bucs’ Third Round Pick: Georgia OT Isaiah Wilson Bucs’ Fourth Round Pick: Ohio State WR K.J. Hill
“Tampa Bay’s defensive front was dominant in 2020, leading the NFL in rush defense and boasting the NFL’s sack leader. Still, the unit has a ton of expiring contracts, and veteran Ndamukong Suh’s spot could be most in need of filling. Kinlaw’s dominant tape was followed up by a fantastic performance in Senior Bowl practices, making him an ideal pick here.” – Luke Easterling