BUCS’ PRE-DRAFT VISITS-WORKOUTS: QUARTERBACKS
The Buccaneers are locked in on selecting a quarterback with the first overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft and have had both of the top-rated QBs – Florida State’s Jameis Winston and Oregon’s Marcus Mariota – in for visits. Tampa Bay will almost certainly draft Winston, the player that sits atop PewterReport.com’s 2015 Bucs’ 7-Round Mock Draft.
Every NFL club is allowed 30 visits to their team’s facility. NFL teams like the Bucs can work out as many draft prospects away from team facilities as they would like. Here is a list of quarterbacks the team has scouted in either visits to One Buc Place or personal workouts at the players’ respective schools or hometowns.
QB Jameis Winston
Winston made a visit to One Buccaneer Place prior to his pro day at Florida State on March 31 that was heavily attended by Bucs coaches, including head coach Lovie Smith, offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter and quarterbacks coach Mike Bajakian, and front office honchos, including general manager Jason Licht, director of player personnel Jon Robinson, director of college scouting Mike Biehl and scout Byron Kiefer. Winston, who is widely regarded as the team’s number one target for the first overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, also has a pre-draft workout with Tampa Bay scheduled for later this month.
QB Marcus Mariota
In March, Mariota’s pro day workout at Oregon was attended by Licht, Robinson and Bajakian, but Smith was noticeably absent. However, Mariota visited One Buccaneer Place where he met with Smith and the Glazers, just like Winston did. And like Winston, the Bucs will do their due diligence and privately work out Mariota, too, even though he likely won’t be selected with their first overall pick. That workout will take place at Oregon on Tuesday, April 7, according to NFL.com’s Albert Breer.
QB Anthony Boone
First reported by Sports Talk Florida, Boone, who will likely be an undrafted free agent, was throwing to Duke wide receivers Jamison Crowder, whom the Bucs are targeting in the middle rounds for his ability as a slot receiver and return specialist, along with wide receiver Isaac Blakeney on April 1. Tampa Bay quarterbacks coach Mike Bajakian and wide receivers coach Andrew Hayes-Stoker were in attendance. Boone, who helped lead Duke’s resurgence, is being evaluated as an undrafted free agent possibility.
QB Hutson Mason
Fox 13 Tampa Bay first reported that Mason and Georgia wide receiver Chris Conley had worked out for the Bucs in mid-March. Tampa Bay is interested in Conley, who starred at the NFL Scouting Combine with a 4.35 time in the 40-yard dash and a 45-inch vertical jump, as a Day 3 wide receiver. Mason is being scouted as a possible undrafted free agent that could help throw during Tampa Bay’s rookie mini-camp and possibly training camp.
This PR Bucs Blog entry will be updated as more quarterback visits and/or workouts are reported.
Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org