The Bucs traded a fourth- and sixth-round pick to the Seattle Seahawks to move up to pick 129 in the fourth round and selected North Texas WR Jalen Darden.

With Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, Scotty Miller and Tyler Johnson all still present on Tampa Bay’s roster, Darden adds speed to an already deep position group. With 4.46 speed Darden is explosive in space and broke out for 1,190 yards in 2020 with a wild 19 touchdowns. He is a true slot receiver, could make an immediate impact in the screen game for Tampa Bay and start his career as a special teams player and rotational player in a specific role for the Bucs.

This is what Pro Football Focus wrote about Jaelon Darden in their 2021 NFL Draft Guide:

“With 74 catches for 735 yards in 2019, Darden wasn’t on a lot of draft boards or watch lists heading into this season. That changed after back-to-back 200-plus yard performances midway through this season. Even though he’s only listed at 5-foot-9 and 174 pounds, Darden has developed a ton physically since showing up to North Texas at a listed 157 pounds. That added muscle has brought a level of speed and burst few possess. He simply moved at a different speed than the guys guarding him in Conference USA. Darden has the kind of vertical slot skills so many offenses covet nowadays.”

Watch Darden’s North Texas highlight video below

PewterReport.com’s 2021 draft coverage and the PewterReport.com 2021 LIVE Draft Show are presented by Edmonson Electric & Security – the official smart home and security company of PewterReport.com.

For the past 40 years, Edmonson Electric has proudly served central Florida with electric services and now proud to add state-of-the-art “Smart Home” technology and security systems to it’s roster.

Whether it’s surveillance cameras, home theaters, or smart lighting, Edmonson Electric & Security is automating your dream home. Click to find out more about controlling, monitoring and securing your home.

Tomorrow starts now. From home automation controls to structured-wiring and surveillance systems, Edmonson Electric & Security has the team to keep your home current.

Call 813.910.3403 for additional information or visit EdmonsonElectric.com.

Control. Monitor. Secure.

Share On Socials

About the Author: Taylor Jenkins

Subscribe
Notify of
30 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
The Wall
The Wall
1 year ago

I really like this pick. Very smart to move up. Finally, a return guy- yes!

inspecto
inspecto
Reply to  The Wall
1 year ago

me too, ya can’t teach speed.

Iwillpartyhard
Iwillpartyhard
1 year ago

Arians said he wanted to add speed on special teams and Darden brings that. He can be our punt and kick returner which he did a lot of in college, and he can potentially find a spot in the top 4 WR over time. For the people clamoring for someone who can help this year hopefully this pick makes you happy.

FLBoy84
FLBoy84
1 year ago

As he said in an interview… “slow feet don’t eat” lol

drdneast
drdneast
1 year ago

Every WR in the room can run this fast except for maybe Evans. You guys are idiots.

surferdudes
surferdudes
Reply to  drdneast
1 year ago

If strait line speed determined how good a receiver is, track stars would be football stars. Acceleration, cutting ability is what you look for, this kid has it.

Dman
Dman
Reply to  drdneast
1 year ago

This is a solid pick. We don’t have a return man on the current roster and Mikens had a recent run in with law enforcement – besides, he never did much anyway.

Theydidwhat
Theydidwhat
1 year ago

Great production at receiver over the last two years, not so much as a return guy. Fast and shifty, something the Bucs don’t have. Like # 11 on the Saints found out in the playoffs, it takes only one good hit from a defensive stud and it’s time for bed. Trading up for overall # 314 is a reach. But as we have seen over the years, the Bucs fall in love with somebody and are fairly locked in on their guy. Most of the time it works, finding a guy that fits.

Last edited 1 year ago by Theydidwhat
Horse
Horse
1 year ago

Special Team play is being address. My guess is we will pick a player who can help on Special Teams too.

Horse
Horse
Reply to  Horse
1 year ago

I was addressing Special Teams in round 5.

SOXX
SOXX
1 year ago

Why move up for this? A dancer who slows down before he gets to the end zone. he runs 4.5

chefboho
chefboho
Reply to  SOXX
1 year ago

Why move up? Are you expecting gold in the fourth round? This team hasn’t had an adequate return man in years. There’s a difference between a “dancer” like Fournette behind the line and Shifty in space like this young man. I swear some of yall will just never be happy no matter who the bucs pic. Let it play out before you condemn this young man

Eddie
Eddie
Reply to  chefboho
1 year ago

Draft a 4.3 receiver with decent hands then we will see.

chefboho
chefboho
Reply to  Eddie
1 year ago

Yeah because that’s all you do in the nfl is run a straight line to show off that 4.3 speed. 🙄 give me a break.

Eddie
Eddie
Reply to  chefboho
1 year ago

See Tyreek Hill, Randy Moss etc all 4.3 straight line.

chefboho
chefboho
Reply to  Eddie
1 year ago

Since you wanna list the exception instead of the norm I’ll throw one at you. Jerry rice 40 time??? 4.59. Any other pointless stats you wanna throw at me?

Last edited 1 year ago by chefboho
NaplesFan2.0
NaplesFan2.0
Reply to  SOXX
1 year ago

4.45 or 4.46*… people will do anything to state how unhappy they are with this draft. You can’t teach cutting ability, which Darden has in spades.

creamsicles
creamsicles
1 year ago

Arians badly wanted Diontae Johnson 2 years ago, then later “settled” for Scotty. Scotty is fast and I greatly value him, but I don’t see him as quick or shifty. Darden is quick and shifty. I’m thrilled to add a guy with that skill set along with Bernard (who I hope still has juice). It’s great to have contrasting styles on the field and he’s a great pick if he proves to be a quality returner. I wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to use him for some bubble screens since it looked like he can make guys miss in… Read more »

PatrioticChief
PatrioticChief
1 year ago

Doesn’t remotely make up for Trask but solid pick.

Captain Sly
Captain Sly
1 year ago

This was a Crazy Good pick! He’s like Devonte Smith 2.0 with a real chance of pushing Scottie Miller for playing time no kidding. There is track speed & then there is football speed, Scotty Miller has track speed but he struggles to make people miss. Every time this guy touches the ball he got a chance to take to the house. I can see him as our KR But wouldn’t shock me at all to see Byron Leftwich drawing up packages to get him the ball.

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Captain Sly
1 year ago

Sure. Except for the fact that he has 1/3 the talent Devonta Smith has. Other than that, they’re the same guy

Last edited 1 year ago by Dave
Captain Sly
Captain Sly
Reply to  Dave
1 year ago

Hilarious! “1/3 of the talent” that is certainly debatable and I would argue that if you put a 160 lbs Devonta Smith on N. Texas team with almost no talent around him that he may not get drafted. On the other hand if you stick Jaelon Darden on a loaded Alabama roster with all that NFL talent, on a national stage every week and with just his current stats he gets drafted in the 1st round and no later than an early 2nd round selection. Devonta Smith is waay overrated! IMO

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Captain Sly
1 year ago

Correct. 1/3. Devonta Smith is easily the best route runner in this draft. And arguably the best route runner to come out in a handful of years. We’ll talk in 5 years, when Devonta Smith has AT LEAST 3 times as many receptions and receiving yards as Darden. I’m sure you were one of those people, like many others, that said for years, put Brady on a perennial loser like the Bucs, Browns, Jets, etc..and see how good he really is. Well, we did. And the result……. Brady leads the perennial loser Bucs, to SB Champs!!!(in his 1st season out… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by Dave
Captain Sly
Captain Sly
Reply to  Dave
1 year ago

We’re going off topic from our initial topic but that’s okay. I have a hypothetical question for you though, Do think by simply adding Brady to let’s just say the 2014 Bucs we win the Super Bowl? I’m going to give you his old LG Logan Mankins, Mike Evans, Vjax, Muscle Hampster, ASJ & on defense you’ll have LVD, Gmac, Clayborn, Will Gholston. Lead by SB head coach Lovie Smith and his amazing staff.. Will “The GOAT” win a SB in his 1st season with that team? Like to get your thoughts.

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Captain Sly
1 year ago

would he have won a SB with the 14’ Bucs, in his 1st season?….No. But he would have either lost the SB, or at absolute worst, lost the NFC championship game. Brady’s worst years, are still 12 win seasons, elite numbers, mvp votes, and a trip to the conference title game

Last edited 1 year ago by Dave
Bucc My Life
Bucc My Life
1 year ago

We could do really innovative things in 4-5 receiver sets for years to come. We just need our QB of the future to be a running threat when we play with an empty backfield.
Oh wait….

Eddie
Eddie
Reply to  Bucc My Life
1 year ago

Go draft Tebow

Alldaway 2.0
Alldaway 2.0
1 year ago

Very good pick. Darden is going to be a weapon underneath.

Eddie
Eddie
1 year ago

Add ‘quickness’ and ‘change of direction’ for sure. But 4.5 forties is not add speed.

BeesKnees
BeesKnees
1 year ago

For me, I see this guy as our version of Deonte Harris for the saints. Although that guy is actually smaller than Darden. I think he can develop too his feet are insane. I think he is in the vain of Rondale Moore and Kadarious Toney who went much earlier. I like it alot.