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The PR Bucs Monday Mailbag is where PewterReport.com’s Mark Cook answers your questions from our Twitter account. You can submit your question each week via Twitter using the hashtag #PRMailbag.

Below are the questions we chose for this week’s edition of the PR Bucs Monday Mailbag.

Question: Is linebacker Kendell Beckwith’s playing career really over?

Answer: I won’t speak in certainty, as I am not sure anyone can say definitely at this point, but it doesn’t appear good. We do know it appears as if he will miss a second straight season after the Bucs placed him on the reserve/non-football injury list this past May.

Bucs LB Kendell Beckwith - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs LB Kendell Beckwith – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

It’s really a sad situation for Kendell Beckwith who overcame a devastating ACL injury in college to only come back in eight months and be a solid contributor as a rookie for the Buccaneers. We, like most when we heard it was a broken ankle, expected him to miss some time, but that he would be back sooner rather than later. And there was a point last season when we thought he would be back on the field by mid-season. In fact, early in the year we saw him in the locker room often with his teammates and even playing ping pong at times. It appeared it was just a matter of time before he was cleared to play. But something must have happened during his rehab to set him back and force him to miss another year, and possibly more.

Unless Beckwith himself decides to divulge the full story, we may never know everything that happened as the team can’t reveal specifics of a medical injury due to HIPAA laws.

Question: If we get at least average production out of Noah Spence, Ronald Jones II, and Vernon Hargreaves III – what is the Bucs record?

Answer: It is kind of early to put me on the spot with a record prediction, but I’ll do my best to answer the question. The problem is, while all of the players you listed could have bounce back years, if Jameis Winston struggles, or Mike Evans misses part of the season with an injury, or say for instance O.J. Howard all of a sudden forgets how to catch a football, then it’s probably 5-11 – or worse.

Now, I don’t expect any of those things to happen, so I will base my prediction on the scenarios you laid out, and the issues I mentioned not taking place. If all goes as you suggested, I could see the Bucs being at least 8-8 and pushing closer to 10 wins. This football team was 5-11 with a historically bad defense last season. Just an upgrade of the coaching staff on defense would lead me to believe three more wins are possible. And if they kicking woes are corrected, Winston has a career year under Bruce Arians and this team stays relatively healthy, fighting for a wild card isn’t too far fetched in my mind.

Bucs CBs Sean Murphy-Bunting and Jamel Dean

Bucs CBs Sean Murphy-Bunting and Jamel Dean – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Question: Do you see Jamel Dean challenging Vernon Hargreaves III for the outside corner spot opposite Carlton Davis by mid-season? His size and speed are ideal in this attack style defense and at playing press man.

Answer: I don’t know if it will be Jamel Dean beating out Vernon Hargreaves III or replacing an injured Hargreaves, but yes, I can see Dean getting some significant playing time this year. Unless he just melts down in training camp and the preseason, the Bucs will find a way to get him on the field. And years in the NFL means nothing to Todd Bowles and his staff. They won’t play favorites with veterans. The best players will play and Dean showed in the OTAs and mini-camp he isn’t afraid and isn’t overwhelmed by being in the NFL.

Of course we felt the same way about Davis last season when he looked like a seasoned veteran in the preseason only to get a rude awakening in New Orleans on opening day. Davis didn’t record an interception and had a good, but not great rookie season.

And no matter how well Dean, or Sean Murphy-Bunting plays in the preseason, there will be some, “Wow, I didn’t see that coming” moments once the live bullets start flying in the regular season. The major question will be how will they respond to the adversity. Talent doesn’t appear to be the issue. Instead, confidence and the ability to move on after a bad play will be the determining factor for the rookies in 2019.

Question: How many wide receivers do the Bucs keep? Who do you think ends up making the final roster?

Answer: Much will be determined by how the preseason goes, what units have the most depth and who stand out on special teams. If a receiver is deemed to be the best kick/punt returner, you could see the Bucs opt to keep six receivers. But if the return job goes to a running back like Dare Ogunbowale, maybe they keep an extra back and only go with five receivers.

WR Jesus “Bobo” Wilson – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

And at this point even Bruce Arians can’t say how many at each position he will keep. That 53rd player might be someone the team doesn’t think it can sneak onto the practice squad, so it keeps him on the active roster and at that point someone has to go from another position.

As of now, it is clearly Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Breshad Perriman as the top three guys at wide receiver. Those players are locks. After that, it appears Justin Watson is No. 4 and I think rookie Scotty Miller is fighting hard for the fifth spot. But don’t sleep on Bobo Wilson, who has kick return ability, and Arians and his staff have complemented undrafted rookies Anthony Johnson and DaMarkus Lodge, too. Tampa Bay has a ton of receivers in camp and that battle in training camp is one I really look forward to watching develop.

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About the Author: Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, the beach and family time.Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at mark@pewterreport.com
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Alldaway 2.0
2 years ago

I think Miller is right now the clear favorite for the 5th spot given his unique skill set. Bobo will have to beat out Lodge and Johnson for ST/reserves for that final sixth spot. But I think the Bucs end up keeping six WR’s because Arians runs a lot of 3 WR sets an injury would immediately make the depth shaky. As for Dean I have this hunch that he is going to win one of the starting spots from day 1. I just feel that if Dean generates turnovers in pre season contests that he is going to be… Read more »

BUC-ASS-BOB
2 years ago

The first major key to season is San Francisco 49ers,the Bucs have had a easy time past 2-3 years with 49ers
Problem this year is 49ers are 6-1 with Jimmy G and barring pre season injury Jimmy will play.
This is a must win game due to the long road stretch coming 4th game. COULD BE KEY TO SEASON!

BigSombrero
2 years ago

Arians has said he will add final pieces to the puzzle after week 3 of the preseason. He points to adding players like Dwight Freeney, Chris Johnson, and Frostee Rucker in the past. That said, I think the Bucs will be able to add to two positions if they aren’t satisfied with the results or depth in the preseason: RB and OL. Don’t get me wrong, I am 100% hopeful for Wilson, RoJo, Ellington, and Peyton Barber toting the rock. Here is a look at a few teams that may have too much depth at RB and might not be… Read more »

EricNV
2 years ago

Man I hate this time of year. Pewter Report does a heroic job of providing interesting info, but from now until training camp starts is the worst part of the off season for me.

macabee
2 years ago

Great questions and likewise great answers too. I am going to focus on the WR position, The Bucs have 13 WRs on the roster and a good problem. The problem is that they can all play. I am surprised that WRs Anthony Johnson and Damarkus Lodge did not get drafted. I am going to guess its because so may college players are coming out early, there is a glut of talent at certain positions. You can get a priorty UDFA that would have been a 5, 6, or 7th round pick. Scotty Miller is a draftee that is expected to… Read more »

76Buc
2 years ago

Great stuff Mac!

drdneast
2 years ago

To bad our OL and DL rooms aren’t having trouble finding a chair for everyone.
Those are the two areas that need the most attention.
Big Sombero, I believe Arians wil be looking at the waiver wire in the final couple of weeks of preseason to see if any veterans are cut loose because of their contracts. There always does seem like a few are let go every year.
I have no doubt BA will make a move for them if he feels that have more talent that the person he can replace them with.

Horse
2 years ago

I was in the Mediterranean the last 30 days and there was very little news about anything having to do with football. I’m way behind the 8-ball as to what was going on other than McCoy went to another team. So far all I have read is Arian’s is a good rah rah cheerleader. Right now whether that has anything to do with the regular-season wins who knows. A lot of expectations for Spence to all of a sudden become a presence, and Hargreaves stays healthy. So what’s going on with the running game; did I miss something these last… Read more »

skipper
skipper
2 years ago

Alldaway, can you clarify what the hell your talking about with Licht throwing to much draft capital at Beckwith? Beckwith was a 3rd round selection and at the time slipped because of the knee issue, he was totally impressive as a rookie.
Great move by Licht unless you feel Licht should have been clairvoyant and had somehow know that his buddy would get in a car accident.

GIJoeWasThere
2 years ago

Too bad Beckwith let his idiot friend ruin his career.

BigSombrero
2 years ago

Ciao Horse! Welcome back to the good ole USA! I’ve been to Italy, Spain, and Portugal myself! The Med was stunning. Torremelinos and Malaga were amazing! Bull fighting, Pablo Picasso’s home, wine barrels, and so much more! You missed nothing really. Rookie class is looking much better than anticipated. Scotty Miller has been a daily playmaking machine. White, Bunting, Dean and Edwards are getting lots of PBU’s and interceptions. Bucs replaced McCoy with Suh. Suh signed for $9m, but can earn $10m. McCoy signed with Carolina for $4m signing bonus, $3m salary, and $3.25m in potential bonuses contingent on making… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago

Thank you for the updates BigSombrero.
Ever been to the military side of the port of Liverno, Italy? Impressive sight for all to see; extending many miles inland of military equipment/supplies packed & ready for deployment immeiately. Big NATO Base with mostly US soldiers involved.

owlykat
2 years ago

Horse, sounds like a great vacation! We are not going to know much about the running game until the pads come on and we see how physical our OL will be and if a worthy player will start at RG. In underwear football both Barber and Jones look good as well as the undrafted RB who has good film playing subpar teams. We have yet to see the power football offense BA will unleash and how he will stop speed rushers who are the kryptonite for D. Smith. We need to know as well who will start at RG. So… Read more »

BigSombrero
2 years ago

No unfortunately I haven’t been to Livorno. I went to Palermo, Italy. If Italy is a boot that is kicking a ball, Palermo is located on the ball. Basically its in Sicily Italy. It’s a port city with a Naval base. My liberty was short and uneventful there. Livorno is further north near France if my memory serves. We also went through the Suez Canal, saw Egypt, crossed the equator, and traveled to Mogadishu(Somalia), Mumbasa(Kenya), Abu Dhabi(United Arab Emirates), and Bahrain also. Two deployments while in the Navy will do that!

Cheers and welcome back!

Horse
2 years ago

Owlykat; thanks for the updates. So the situation has to change as to a strong running back backup and a solid starting Right Guard. On defense yes I believe they have improved on the defensive backs, linebacker’s, but still no real replacement for jpp. I do agree with some comments about letting JPP go because it’s very iffy if he would be available in November or December. we could use those funds to pick up another veteran lineman. Go Bucs!

scubog
2 years ago

Welcome back Horse. We missed you.

Alldaway 2.0
2 years ago

@Skipper Beckwith was acquired by the Bucs with a trade up into the third with a 4th and 6th round selection. Personally I thought Beckwith would still be there in the fourth round but I guess Licht felt otherwise. Licht also traded up for Aguayo in the 2nd round a year earlier by discarding the fourth round pick he gained in an earlier trade down in that draft. I am not a fan of teams using draft capital to trade up after the first unless they are a playoff caliber team IMVHO. The Bucs were clearly not playoff caliber and… Read more »

Alldaway 2.0
2 years ago

Forget to mention Ryan Smith was a fourth rounder from the 2016 draft and still with the Bucs as a special teams ace and maybe pushing for playing time this year.

To me those 4th, 5th and 6th round picks are valuable for finding filler guys on the back end of the roster. I just wish Licht would realize this sooner.

EastEndBoy
2 years ago

Ok – I’ll bite: “if they kicking woes are corrected, Winston has a career year under Bruce Arians and this team stays relatively healthy, fighting for a wild card isn’t too far fetched in my mind.”…those are some pretty enormous “ifs”. In fact, we were pretty healthy by NFL standards in 2018 (outside of Kwon, we didn’t really lose anyone of consequence)….and it got us 5 wins. What would a Winston “career year” look like? His best year (I guess that’s what you mean by a career year) was maybe his rookie year…and I don’t see a career year like… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago

Scubog, thank you. Wife and I celebrated our 52nd Wedding Anniversary. We had a blast! Perfect weather and seas for 28 days. I’m fired up for the season to start.
I think we finally got the right coach at the right time for the right reasons. I’ve got to give Licht credit on this one. Go Bucs!

Alldaway 2.0
2 years ago

@EastEndBoy The Bucs had a lot of injuries in 2018 which forced a lot of the 2018 rookies into action. Koetter’s goal of going into the season healthy didn’t last long (especially on the D-line and later with the secondary). Bucs offense has been good enough the last three years to be in the playoffs. Bucs have needed some semblance of defense and a decent kicking game to make it happen. It is hard to make the playoffs with only 1 out of 3 phases firing on all cylinders. Anger’s sudden decline last season along with continued FG kicking woes… Read more »

EastEndBoy
2 years ago

: While I don’t share your perspectives, I won’t pick apart your post – I’m glad there is optimism in the fanbase. Go Bucs!

BucFan circa76
2 years ago

Horse, congrats to you and your wife on 52 years !! That’s amazing in these times…..my parents just celebrated their 55 yr anniversary (but no Mediterranean trip). EastEndBoy, your statement “we were pretty healthy by NFL standards in 2018 (outside of Kwon, we didn’t really lose anyone of consequence)” makes me wonder how closely you follow our Bucs. Kwon Alexander, Kendell Beckwith, Devante Bond, Riley Bullough, Chris Conte, Vinny Curry, Carlton Davis, Evan Dietrich-Smith, Justin Evans, Brent Grimes (who is dead to me), Vernon Hargreaves, O.J. Howard, DeSean Jackson, and M.J. Stewart were among the players who started at least… Read more »

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