Photo by: Eric Dellaratta/PR
With the 39th pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Noah Spence, defensive end, Eastern Kentucky.
It was no mystery that the Bucs were in the market for pass rushers and Spence, who impressed at the Senior Bowl, was there for the taking in the second round. Many analysts and talent evaluators would call this a slam-dunk pick, so long as teams believe the off-field issues are in the past. And clearly the Buccaneers are one of those teams.
An elite athlete who was once considered a first-round prospect as recently as the Combine, the main concern regarding Spence was his checkered history. After two seasons at Ohio State – where he recorded 8.5 sacks and 15 tackles for loss – Spence was banned from the Big 10 for two failed drug tests and spent his junior season at Eastern Kentucky. Sixty-three tackles, 22.5 for loss, and 11.5 sacks later in 2015, Spence would decide to forgo his final year of eligibility.
He spent the subsequent months leading up to the draft trying to restore his image, giving exceedingly honest answers during press conferences at the Senior Bowl and Combine. While Spence accepted the criticism and took blame for the mistakes, he assured reporters – and, of course, front offices – that it’s in the past and he’s done hanging out with the wrong crowd.
Spence was a first-team All-Big 10 player during his sophomore year (2013), in addition to being a two-time OSU Scholar-Athlete and an Academic All-Big 10 Conference honoree.
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.
Contact him at: [email protected]
Nice addition -Glad he dropped
Finally I picked one. bout my average in a draft. lol. Good pick.
Meathead, Meathead, Meathead!
I guess Licht knows what he is doing after all. I was PO’d that they did not take Spence in the first round. I guess that’s why I’m a plumber.
I was ready to put Licht into the GM hall of fame after the first two picks! Then he drafts a kicker in round 2 treading up and giving up a pick. I want to puke.
Okay, VHIII was not exciting but I think will be a solid pick.
Spence…I think he’s a fortunate pick – our best DE on day 1.
A freakin kicker in round 2.?????….well that’s certainly “a” pick…bold Licht, bold….but when you are staring at Tandy-McDougald as your starting safeties you cannot be making luxury picks….this guy may be good but he’s no better than Barth…
Really? No better than Barth? He’s only the most accurate kicker in college football history. Barth is a scrub next to him
It was all from inside 40…and he can’t kick off….
Haha go watch college football dude, you sound like a fool. Have you seen he’s touchback percentage?
Why is it so hard on PR to see reasonably when it comes to guys from Fla St?
1) yes I have seen his touchback % 55%….that would be 14th best in the NFL…the NFL has a higher standard than college.
2) Barth on kicks over 40, 55%….Aguyao on kicks over 40, 50%
3) Barth overall 82%, Aguyao overall 88%
Look, again, I’m sure he’ll be fine but if your expectation for the kid is that he’s somehow never going to miss a FG and be the best kicker in the league, then I think you’ll be disappointed.
And finally, @mybeirdisweird, if every kid that did amazing in college translated that to the NFL….well you see the point hopefully.
Hope he’s fantastic because we gave up quite a bit (fir a kicker) to get him.
Wrong; he is mucxh better than Barth and can do more with placing the ball that barth can’t do. he’s never missed a PAT or a 40 yard kick. He can kick 60 yard fG’s all day long. He can kick the ball high and put it in the corner or do some serious hang time. The guy will be here for many years. So far this is our best draft pick. Go Bucs!
Sorry Horse…he was 50% over 40 yards (never mind over 60 yards)…
And…that was a result achieved on the easier kicking fields of college football…its intentionally made more difficult in the NFL.
And, I in no way am trying to advocate for Barth, or say that Aguyao won’t be a fine kicker, my point is that we need help at several positions…desperately…like Safety!…
He is a fine kicker but me thinks I would have just waited till the 3rd round and if he was still there then get him. Oh well, if he is still our kicker 10 years from now I guess it was a good pick.
Actually, the hash marks are wider in college ball. Thus more acute of angles involved. But he is still not worth a second rounder.
Yes @chetthevette…a poor use of words by me.did not mean “easier kicking fields” as in the actual blades of grass fields…perhaps should have said “easier kicking arena of college football”….oops, there I go again (more indoor arenas per team in the NFL)….well, you get the point…I think it’s harder to kick in the NFL period.
I was implying 40 yards or less; my bag for not saing it correctly.
I was hoping we would consider the kicker. I never thought that we might trade up to get him.
I still have faith that Licht and crew know what they are doing. I think it was a wise long term move.
Time will tell.
Oh, and as unexpected as the pick for Aguayo is, consider Sebastian Janikowski. He was taken in the first round by the Raiders. Some 19 or 20 years later he is still there.
I am happy we got Spence and again I trust that we vetted him properly.
Janikowski lives for the long field goal…this is not the next coming of Janikowski. I’m sure he’ll be fine…but why would Licht trade up and pass over serious help for our anemic Safety position or pedestrian Center position for a kicker…we are not a kicker away from anything…
I take it back, he is a meathead. A kicker?
We’ll see about Spence. He definitely has talent but to me he’s a “tweener” based on his size and speed. I’m not sure how a “tweener” fits into our defense, but I can’t think of too many that excel in the NFL. Hopefully he does well. As for Aguayo, I said before the draft I think there were three game changers in this draft class: Ramsey, Elliott and Aguayo. I wouldn’t have traded up into the 2nd round to take a kicker that missed five kicks last year, but we have him so I’m happy!
We know the players are drug tested. Are the GM’s? I question whether Licht would pass.
You trade up to get a kicker in the 2nd round, you better make the playoffs or you should be FIRED.
Pink, Spence has been compared in size , and game to Von Miller, if he’s that kind of tweener, I’ll take him. We didn’t give up two picks to move up for a kicker, we just gave up one, a fourth rounder. Our third, minus their second equals one fourth pick, and that we got from trading down in the first. So one ,minus one, equals we gave up no extra picks at all. Not saying I love the pick, but you all have to admit our field goal, and extra point attempts were gut wrenching to watch last year.
Well, he has V. Miller’s size but not his speed or bending ability. Spence has the speed and bending ability of a DE, which is why I think he is a tweener. I don’t think V. Miller is a tweener, I think he’s a prototypical 3-4 OLB that happens to be the rare type that can also excel in a 4-3 defense, which he is in now. The same goes for E. Mack.
Also, I understand we didn’t give up two picks for Aguayo, I just said we traded up into the 2nd round to get him.
Wait and see the kicker just might be the best of this draft class.
Well Guys great kickers are hard to come by. Great Mood. Remember Bucs. They gave their 3rd pick up and the extra 4th pick from theHardgraves trade down. They still have 1 4th,1-5th,&2 sixth. Then Tampa will get a couple of players from the undrafted college pool of players that Tampa invited to visit with I think 3-4 more player FA Tampa will sign after the draft fo try to make the roster.Lets see what happens on Sat go Bucs.
I love Spence not sure he is a DE in a 4-3 i see him as a OLB in a 3-4 I guess we will see
Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it! I would have thought the Bucs learned the important lesson of not signing players with character concerns based on Williams, Talib, and the CB who kept getting suspended for drug use until he was no good to us. Given that Spense is no run stopper and just a speed rusher, we should have followed the example of all the other NFL teams that didn’t take that risk. I just hope he will follow Winston’s efforts to make our fans forget his past troubles and becomes a double digit sacker for us that we badly need.
What lesson did we learn with Talib exactly? He won a Super Bowl and appeared in another. We should have kept him and surrounded him with better players.
I wish the Bucs would have taken a DT in the first few rounds but I am on board with the Aguayo pick. I commented on #BucsLive that the Bucs should take him in the 3rd round and Scott Smith addressed it for about 5 minutes ultimately saying he wouldn’t take a kicker. Aguayo is a pretty awesome guy and an ultimate competitor. I’m coming around on the VH3 and Spence picks.
Hope Spence pans out. Talent but taking ecstasy is lot more worries one than pot. Also not sure how more of 3-4 OLB will adapt to 4-3 DE. Hope he is a terror!
Seems like been more logical on the kicker to take him 3rd if he was there. If he wasn’t oh well, just get best defensive players available at 3,4,and the extra 4. Hope we got this one right. College does not translate to NFL first of all. Second I don’t see him as night and day better than proven 13th most accurate NFL kicker Barth. Don’t care what he did in college. If he does it here then great.
I’m ecstatic about the first 2 picks, especially after trading to get an extra fourth. The kicker was a head scratcher but I’m assuming it was all part of the plan. Licht hasn’t given me a reason to doubt him yet and I hope it stays that way. We lost a few games because of a kicker so a little insurance couldn’t hurt right?
I would’ve thought we would wait to pick him up later and go safety but maybe the talent there isn’t as good as it seems from the outside looking in. Hoping everything pans out though, we’re definitely on the upswing
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