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: Do you see Tampa Bay trading anyone away on draft night (O.J. Howard or Cameron Brate maybe)? Also do we trade up in first round to secure a Top 4 tackle?
Answer: Anything is possible, and you named the two guys – O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate – I would say would be the most likely candidates if Tampa Bay were to decide to trade any position on the roster. At the same time, I think when Tom Brady sees Howard in person, and gets a chance to see his athleticism, he may put in a word upstairs that the Bucs have quite a potential weapon for him.
The front office and and coaching staff already know they have a “potential” weapon, but so far it’s been more potential than production for Howard. This could be an example of the “Brady effect” so many talk about – his ability to elevate and maximize the skills of a player that may not have reached his full potential yet. If Brady doesn’t help Howard become the star he has the potential to be, then Howard will likely never achieve it.
As far as trading up the first round, that is something general manager Jason Licht hasn’t done – yet. Licht values draft picks a lot. And trading up in the first round could cost next year’s No. 1 or a number of 2020 picks, including the team’s second-rounder, and I don’t foresee Licht doing that. Tampa Bay picks at No. 14 and most likely has 15 or so guys they feel can come in and be impact players this season graded as true first-rounders. But if he were going to trade up for a player it would likely be Louisville’s mammoth offensive tackle Mekhi Becton, who could really help Tampa Bay’s ground game.
Now once out of the Top 15, then you begin seeing players that aren’t a lot different than early second-rounders in most years. So it would take a really good deal – meaning not too steep of a price – or Tampa Bay really coveting a player for the Bucs to move up.
I could see Tampa Bay moving down, however. If one of the top four offensive tackles aren’t there, and for example say South Carolina defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw or Auburn’s Derrick Brown happen to be gone, then perhaps they target Houston tackle Josh Jones, and may feel they could move down a few spots to get him and pick up a couple extra picks in the process. The Bucs really must come out of the first two rounds with a right tackle to replace Demar Dotson.
Yet even moving down for Jones is a little bit of a gamble. No position, other than quarterback, rises as fast on draft night as offensive linemen do. Look at last season when small school tackle Tytus Howard went No. 23 to Houston and guard Chris Lindstrom went to the Falcons with the 14th pick. Both were highly-rated players, but not many expected them to go in the Top 25 two weeks before the draft.
Question: I keep seeing people saying the Bucs may draft a WR in the first round do you think that’s a possibility?
Answer: I can’t imagine them taking one at No. 14. That isn’t to say it is a bad idea. But with a pair of Pro Bowl wide receivers in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, plus tight ends Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard, add in the Bucs probably selecting a pass-catching running back at some point, it doesn’t seem to make a ton of sense to draft a player that is, at best, the third receiving option. There is only one ball to go around.
Most teams wouldn’t draft say a safety in the first round if they already had two Pro Bowlers at that position. Perhaps teams add a pass rusher, or maybe a linebacker in that circumstance, but I don’t think it would be wise to take a receiver that wouldn’t be one of a team’s top two players at his position in 2020.
That isn’t to say in a couple of years that a first-round receiver wouldn’t eventually take Evans’ spot, or if Godwin were to suffer a major injury for instance. But in the win-now mode that the Buccaneers are in this year, it just doesn’t add up for me. They will likely draft at least one receiver, but this year’s group of pass catchers is as deep as we have seen in a long time. Tampa Bay could get a second-round talent in the fourth round, and a fifth-round talent as an undrafted free agent.
Question: If something happened to Matt Ryan and Jameis Winston was not signed yet, do the Falcons and Dirk Koetter give Jameis Winston a call?
Answer: I can’t imagine a situation where Jameis Winston isn’t on a roster by the time training camp rolls around. So I don’t really think the question is realistic honestly. But let’s just say since you asked it, that Matt Ryan were to fall down the steps of his Atlanta mansion in June and snap his leg and is out for six months or so. Then the Falcons are in crisis mode.
No one in the NFL knows Winston better than Dirk Koetter, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see the Falcons consider him. And I think Winston would jump at the opportunity to face his old team twice a year. Regardless of his compliments to the organization and the number of friends he has on the roster, Winston would relish in the chance to beat Tampa Bay. You won’t find a more competitive guy in the league than Winston.
With that said, Winston and Koetter didn’t have a perfect relationship. Some inside sources have told us that. And we know, from Koetter’s own admission, he preferred Marcus Mariota over Winston in the pre-draft process. However, if Ryan were somehow unavailable, they wouldn’t find another free agent quarterback out there that would be more ready to step in a lead the Falcons offense.
Question: Since a PR Draft Party is out of the question, how do you guys plan to cover the draft given our current restrictions?
Answer: That is still in the planning stages, but rest assured we will have some type of interactive coverage with our readers. The last few years we have hosted PewterReport.com’s Draft Videocast live from One Buccaneer Place for the entire three days of the NFL Draft. No other local outlet in Tampa Bay, and perhaps around the league, broadcasts live for all three days. We are certainly excited to add Jon Ledyard to the PR staff to fill the draft expertise that Trevor Sikkema provided to us over the years, and you can read Ledyard’s tremendous draft coverage all this month on PewterReport.com.
Unfortunately it will be much different this year than in the past due to the circumstances the NFL and the world are dealing with during this Covid-19 situation. There will not be any draft coverage from One Buccaneer Place as general manager Jason Licht will be phoning in the team’s selections from home. PewterReport.com will have more information coming out soon as we work out the logistics and plans for what we will be capable of doing this season in terms of our annual Draft Videocast.
If you missed it in the past, here is a sample video of one of our live Draft Videocasts, and you can also check out all of our YouTube content and subscribe by click here.