The 2020 Reese’s Senior Bowl starts this week, and PewterReport.com will be reporting live all week from Mobile, Ala. The Bucs have drafted players from the Senior Bowl in years past including safety Mike Edwards (2019), cornerback M.J. Stewart (2018), tight end O.J. Howard (2017), edge rusher Noah Spence (2016) and offensive linemen Donovan Smith and Ali Marpet (2015).
There is another group of stellar talent in this year’s Senior Bowl. Here is a list of 10 defensive players that the Bucs scouts and coaches will be targeting in Mobile.
Day 1 Draft Targets At The Senior Bowl
South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw – 6-6, 310 – Senior
PewterReport.com has Kinlaw going to Tampa Bay with the first pick in the 2020 Bucs’ 7-Round Mock Draft. Kinlaw is a monster with long arms, a great motor and an intriguing blend of power and speed. His pass rush is really coming on as he improved his sack total from four as a junior to six as a senior. Kinlaw is projected to be a mid- to late first-round pick, and his versatility to play across the defensive line makes him a candidate at three-technique defensive tackle or defensive end in Todd Bowles’ 3-4 scheme.
Day 2 Draft Targets At The Senior Bowl
Utah OLB Bradlee Anae – 6-3, 265 – Senior
Fast and ferocious are two words that accurately describe Anae’s game, as he was a terror in the PAC-12 for the Utes. He’s improved as a player and a pass rusher each year, posting seven sacks as a sophomore, 7.5 sacks as a junior and 13 as a senior. He finished his Utah career with 40 tackles for loss, 29.5 sacks and five forced fumbles. Physical at the point of attack and full of swagger, Anae would add to the toughness of Tampa Bay’s front seven and continue to bolster the Bucs’ pass rush with his speed and power off the edge on Day 2.
Michigan OLB Josh Uche – 6-2, 250 – Senior
Has some similarity to Tampa Bay’s Shaquil Barrett in that he can bend the edge so quickly and effortlessly at times when rushing the passer, and built similarly, too. Uche was a situational pass rusher as a junior and had eight tackles for loss and seven sacks prior to recording 10.5 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks as a senior. Uche needs more experience dropping into coverage, so he would have polish his technique at the next level if he were to play in Bowles’ 3-4 scheme.
Wisconsin OLB Zack Baun – 6-3, 235 – Senior
Baun was more of a traditional linebacker as a junior and had 7.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks before exploding as a senior with 19.5 tackles for loss and 12.5 sacks with two forced fumbles as a senior when he was asked to rush the passer more often. He plays with a great motor and a physical intensity. Baun can also drop in coverage, evidenced by his four pass breakups and two career interceptions, including a pick-six. Uche would fit in Bowles’ defense quite well as a Day 2 pick.
Utah DT Leki Fotu – 6-5, 335 – Senior
The Bucs already have one monster in the middle of their defense in nose tackle Vita Vea. At 6-foot-5, 335 pounds, Fotu is similarly built and has pretty good quickness and agility for a big man. Like Vea, Fotu is better at stuffing the run, but he does have some limited pass rush ability due to the tremendous push he gets at the line of scrimmage. Fotu had 3.5 sacks as a junior and half a sack as a senior. If Tampa Bay wants to add more size inside to help continue to shut down the run, Fotu is a great option on Day 2.
Tennessee OLB Darrell Taylor – 6-4, 255 – Senior
Taylor is a really solid pass rusher that makes plays in the backfield. He leaves Tennessee with 26.5 tackles for loss, 19.5 sacks, seven pass breakups, six forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries and in his career. Taylor has proven that he can get sacks in bunches, evidenced by four sacks against Kentucky and three sacks against Georgia – both in the 2018 season. The Bucs are always looking for good pass rushers and with the quickness and size that Taylor has, he could make the transition to playing outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme after playing a 4-3 defensive end in college.
Day 3 Draft Targets At The Senior Bowl
Syracuse OLB Alton Robinson – 6-4, 260 – Senior
Robinson’s pass rush production dipped a bit in 2019 after a monster junior season in which he had 17 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. Robinson had nine tackles for loss, four sacks and a forced fumble, and h will try to use the Senior Bowl to show NFL scouts that his junior year wasn’t a fluke. Robinson has great size and good agility, and could be a steal near the top of Day 3.
North Carolina State DT Larrell Murchison – 6-4, 291 – Senior
The Wolfpack have a great track record when it comes to pumping out NFL talent along the defensive line, and Murchison continues that trend. Murchison improved as an interior pass rusher in 2019, going from four sacks and eight tackles for loss as a junior to seven sacks and 12 tackles for loss as a senior. Murchison also recorded three fumble recoveries and an interception at N.C. State. The athletic D-tackle has experience playing in three- and four-man fronts, gives great effort and hits like a hammer. He would fit in well along Tampa Bay’s D-line early on Day 3.
Lenoir-Rhyne SS Kyle Dugger – 6-2, 220 – Senior
Dugger was featured in PewterReport.com’s 2020 Bucs’ 7-Round Mock Draft as Tampa Bay’s fourth-round pick. Dugger packs a punch as a tackler and has good ball skills in the secondary, evidenced by his 237 tackles, 36 pass breakups, 10 interceptions, six forced fumbles, six fumble recoveries and two blocked kicks at Lenoir-Rhyne. Dugger is fast and athletic and also shined as a punt returner in college, averaging a ridiculous 13.9 yards per return and scoring six touchdowns. The Bucs could use a talent like Dugger in the secondary and on special teams early on Day 3.
Southern Illinois SS Jeremy Chinn – 6-3, 212 – Senior
Like Dugger, Chinn is another small school safety trying to prove he can hang with the big boys from the FBS level at the Senior Bowl. Chinn is well built, an aggressive tackler and is an electric player in the secondary and close to the line of scrimmage. Chinn recorded 243 tackles, 31 pass breakups, 13 interceptions, six forced fumbles, five tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries, one sack and a blocked kick for the Salukis in his four-year career. Due to his talent and production, Chinn figures to be an early Day 3 pick, and has the tools necessary to play in Tampa Bay’s defense, which calls for versatile safeties.