Now that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ draft class is complete, it’s time to round up the opinions of how they did versus the rest of the league.

The thoughts surrounding the Bucs’ draft varies, as expected, but most major media evaluators thought the Bucs did a pretty good job of not only acquiring talent, but the right kind of talent for their team.

Here’s what some of the big-time media analyst had to say about the Bucs’ 2018 draft class.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com | Grade: A-

“Vea could be a difference-maker against the run and as a penetrator in the interior. There was better value at a position of need in Florida State safety Derwin James. They could have picked a nose tackle later in the draft. But they did pick up two second-round picks by trading back only five spots in the first round. That haul resulted in a starting running back in Jones, who can do a bit of everything and was a worthy selection. Pairing Stewart with outside corner Carlton Davis gives the Bucs depth. Cappa is a starting guard for the Buccaneers sooner than later. He’ll get after it in a big way.”

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports | Grade: A

“They needed players on defense and they landed a bunch of talented guys who can help, thanks in part to a trade down in the first round. Defensive tackle Vita Vea gives them much needed bulk up front and they took some secondary players who will help. I really like the pick of corner Carlton Davis in the third. Second-round pick Ronald Jones will be a star. Watch out for this team next year.”

Dan Kadar, SB Nation | Grade: B-

“Taking defensive tackle Vita Vea in the first round over safety Derwin James was a puzzling move. Vea is a really good player, and will help a re-shaped defensive line that already added Beau Allen, Vinny Curry, and Jason Pierre-Paul. Safety was a just a need for the Buccaneers and it wasn’t addressed until the fourth round with Jordan Whitehead of Pittsburgh.

Between those two picks the Buccaneers got some starters in cornerbacks M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis. Taken at No. 63 overall, Davis was a good value at the end of the second round. Running back Ronald Jones II is a playmaker and should get a majority of the carries for the Buccaneers. He may be an Offensive Rookie of the Year candidate. Alex Cappa has good potential at guard.

Sixth round guard Jack Cichy could stick as a nice backup if he can stay healthy. Had he not been injured last year, he may have been a top 100 pick.”

Frank Schwab, Yahoo! Sports | Grade: C

“Big Vita Vea completed Tampa’s overhaul on the defensive line, though it’s hard to see Vea having much of an impact on passing downs. Ronald Jones is an interesting second-round pick: Can he be an every-down back? He had some high-volume games at USC, and his game-breaking ability is undeniable. Cornerbacks M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis need to contribute soon. Overall it’s nothing to get too excited about, unless Jones becomes an elite back right away.”

Ian Wharton, Bleacher Report | Grade: B+

“The Tampa Bay Buccaneers did well to move back and collect two second-round picks in the 2018 NFL draft. They had the chance to add safety Derwin James to their secondary but instead went with mammoth defensive tackle Vita Vea in the first round. Vea is not yet a complete three-down player but is a terrific athlete for his size and is the latest investment this offseason as the team tries to shore up a woeful run defense.

General manager Jason Licht had a terrific Day 2, led by explosive running back Ronald Jones. The USC ball-carrier has home run speed and consistent vision. He should excel behind the Buccaneers’ athletic offensive line and has untapped potential as a pass-catcher.

Defensive backs M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis immediately add needed talent into one of the worst cornerback depth charts in the league, and Tampa Bay now boasts a bit of a surplus at the position. Humboldt State guard Alex Cappa had dominant film and could be the next Ali Marpet for the Buccaneers’ offensive line.”

Andy Benoit, SportsIllustrated | Grade: B

“It’s a little odd to sign career backup Beau Allen to a three-year, $15 million free-agent contract if the team didn’t think he’d become a starter. Vita Vea’s arrival relegates Allen to a second-string role. And the Bucs can’t play the “we didn’t think Vea would still be on the board when we picked” card because they entered this draft with the No. 7 pick. Which means they knew when they signed Allen that they could get Vea if they wanted.

If Vea had been gone at No. 12, Tampa Bay almost certainly would have drafted a defensive back—safety was their biggest need, with corner not far behind. The second-round selections of M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis can be interpreted as a subtle message to up-and-down 2016 first-rounder Vernon Hargreaves, especially when you consider the Bucs also drafted a defensive back in the fourth round who has slot coverage potential (Jordan Whitehead). But nickel is the main defense in today’s NFL, and Tampa Bay realizes it can’t have too much depth here, especially with soon-to-be 35-year-old Brent Grimes entering perhaps his final year. If Hargreaves plays in 2018 like he did in the second half of his rookie season, he’ll be viewed unequivocally as a long-term starter.

Dropped in between these defensive picks were Ronald Jones, who fills Doug Martin’s multi-year void at running back, and Alex Cappa, an interior O-lineman. With Cappa now on the roster, it’s likely that the J.R. Sweezy experiment won’t last much longer—though some see the rookie as a tackle. If Tampa Bay does, this pick becomes that much more interesting given that 2015 second-round left tackle Donovan Smith is in a contract year.”

Buccaneers Grade Average vs. Rest of NFL

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]
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FLBoy84
FLBoy84
4 years ago

THIS – “M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis immediately add needed talent into one of the worst cornerback depth charts in the league”. Could also be said that JPP, Allen, Vea, Curry and Unrein added needed talent into one of the worst defensive line depth charts in the league as well. Both areas should be drastically improved and have a dramatic effect on the performance of the D overall. Hopefully the play-calling takes advantage of this new influx of talent.

Sheldon
Sheldon
4 years ago

Draft grade would have been an A+ if we just took derwin James first. DT wasn’t a must this draft.

Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Reply to  Sheldon
4 years ago

Move on FSU homer! He’s not as good as you think…they passed twice. Plus he’s dumber than a bag of hammers.

Sheldon
Sheldon
Reply to  Jameis Wins-A-Ton
4 years ago

I’m a gator fan but, when it came to getting a SS he seemed to show all of what we need. That’s why i wanted James. Vea is a good player but depth chart picks are later in the draft not first round. Just repeating what licht said.

majc32
majc32
Reply to  Jameis Wins-A-Ton
4 years ago

You are dumber than a bag of hammers. This kid was nearly a 4.0 student in high school and a 3.75 gpa in college. So who is dumber than a bag of hammers?

buddah
buddah
Reply to  Sheldon
4 years ago

safety not worth a number 7.

e
e
4 years ago

I hope the nimbus that is being investigated by the FBI for threatening Jason Licht is not a member of this group. There’s no place for that stupidity.

Buc 1976
Buc 1976
4 years ago

The Bucs did the RIGHT THING drafting Vea! Anyone that goes to Bucs games know how hot it is right. So a DT is engaged every play so now they can sub. and keep them fresh for the 4th qt.

Mike.Seven
Mike.Seven
4 years ago

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7DhjT7Xrjd8&t=8049s If you watch the 2017 Fiesta Bowl Vita Vea looks horrible is manhandled all day by Penn state O line, never gets within in 10 ‘ of the QB Barkley runs right by him every time, his only tackles were 3-4 yard gains for Penn State. They showed him into the backfield several times He is not as good as Bucs current players on the roster, I know you all watched ESPN highlights and think he a monster, He played in PAC12 not the same as against a real Big 10 team, he was made fool of 6’5- 6’6… Read more »

FLBoy84
FLBoy84
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

Nobody’s angry at you dude, they just want you to go away….

Mike.Seven
Mike.Seven
Reply to  FLBoy84
4 years ago

When you are dead last in division ask the guy yelling the loudest to go away! Let’s all be happy with Bucs management give them an attaboy, good Job guys, keep it up we love being last!

FLBoy84
FLBoy84
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

It’s usually the one that’s yelling the loudest that has the least productive things to say…. thanks for proving that point.

Kenneth Barrett
Kenneth Barrett
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

As someone who formerly played college football and assisted on a college football staff, I get really annoyed with comments like this. Did Vea have a good game? By all means no. Was he innefective,? Yes. Was that his fault? No for the most part it isn’t. You have to understand what Penn State is trying to do in this game. People look at Vea and think…man this guy is huge so if the run isn’t stopped, it’s his fault. The majority of the runs in this game by Penn State are zone reads meaning that they are reading the… Read more »

Mike.Seven
Mike.Seven
Reply to  Kenneth Barrett
4 years ago

Washington had to stop Penn State for a chance to tie that game, and if you watch the last 4 minutes Vita was exhausted and Penn State shot it QB on a run and then Barkley right at him to keep the drive alive, they did not target the ends they went right at the fat boy. It was a really bad game for Vita when it counted the most. I appreciate your taking time to write a long well thought out response. The NFL is going to be much tougher than Penn State. This team needed a home run… Read more »

aquilus
aquilus
4 years ago

He says “you guys” so that means he isnt a bucs fan…maybe someone upset their team didnt get to get him????

Mike.Seven
Mike.Seven
Reply to  aquilus
4 years ago

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7DhjT7Xrjd8&t=8049s

He was blown off the line all night long “Monster no Joke better word”

Watch the film, I would not wish him on any Team.

geno711
geno711
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

So the very next play on your attached youtube video shows Vea being double teamed. So you expect him to take on the double team and tackle the best running back in college last year all at the same time. Even with the double team, he held the line of scrimmage and was not blown off the line on that play.

Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

You are sofa king…we…todd…did.

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Mike.Seven
4 years ago

Dude you are a complete clown. You wouldn’t wish him on any team? The fact that it’s even humanly possible for anyone to be this stupid amazes me. You should take up lacrosse as a hobby, because football definitely isn’t your area of expertise

Horse
Horse
4 years ago

None of the other Sports Experts mean anything as to their grading, if we do not know what grading the other team got.

Bucsfan1983
Bucsfan1983
4 years ago

C+

chetthevette
chetthevette
4 years ago

Did we not draft Barron at #7? Instead of Kuechly.
I’ll take double V all day long. Safeties are fine but I have to know “where’s the beef”.
GO BUCS

Bucsfan1983
Bucsfan1983
Reply to  chetthevette
4 years ago

Except James is a much better prospect with much higher potential than Barron. And Vea is not as good as Kuechly.

skipper
skipper
4 years ago

Mike.Seven, 370 lb O lineman?

Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Jameis Wins-A-Ton
Reply to  skipper
4 years ago

Don’t you know…they’re everywhere…lol – What a tool

buddah
buddah
4 years ago

All we heard during the season was you build a defense from the inside out. That’s what the Buccaneers did and now way too many people are screaming. Ridiculous.Licht has given us a major upgrade in defensive talent. We are much stronger team than we were at the end of last season or the season before.

Jordan Chavez
Jordan Chavez
4 years ago

It’s lazy to just look at Vea’s stats and call it a bad pick. The dude was voted DPOY for the Pac. The coaches in the Pac new his stats but they also knew that every single game they have to gameplan around that guy. He almost always recieved a double team and got triple teamed a good amount as well. At the very least this guy is going to solidify our run defense and command double teams which means Mccoy is getting a single against a guard and either JPP or Spence/curry will be getting 1 on 1 on… Read more »

Borkdog
Borkdog
4 years ago

Last fat boy, we drafted made out pretty well, think his number 99 is retired. Vea is great pic, far better than any safety out of college could ever offer a team, without a dominant D-line. James couldn’t cover anyone with last years DL which didn’t perform for Koetter/Smith. Plus he wasn’t best safety pic anyway, would pic Fitzpatrick over James, (see Saban favorite player). Give me the best ranked DT all day. (See comments from N.E. LB retired Tedy Bruschi-LOVED VV as pic). You don’t make pick on one game, and certainly need to project future development and if… Read more »

makski
makski
Reply to  Borkdog
4 years ago

Just because Derwin does well on another team, doesn’t mean he would have done well here. Maybe, but maybe not. The fit on the team, meaning scheme and surrounding talent, has more of an impact on the player than his talent alone. The right situation can make a player look better than he really is. For example, if Brady went to Cleveland instead of NE, I do not think he would have any Superbowls yet. Being surrounded by the coaches he had, and the scheme they ran, and the players they acquired, all that has helped Brady flourish. If he… Read more »

scubog
scubog
4 years ago

The article was to be about grading the entire Draft, not this ongoing debate between the Bucs decision to select Vea over James. Personally, I think Draft grades are totally meaningless. One need only go back to 1995 to see the Bucs got a ‘C’ after selecting two first ballot Hall of Fame players. I predicted that following this past Draft weekend the “woulda, coulda, shoulda” remarks would follow. Those who watch youtube videos, watch the “experts” on TV and search the internet to obtain a relatively minuscule amount of information always think they know more than the teams who,… Read more »