By virtue of beating the defending world champion Kansas City Chiefs, 31-9, and winning Super Bowl LV, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will have the 32nd overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
This represents the latest the Bucs have ever drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft. In fact, the last time the Bucs drafted after the first 20 picks was in 2006 when Tampa Bay used the 23rd overall pick to select guard Davin Joseph. The Bucs finished the 2005 season with an 11-5 record and lost its wild card playoff game to Washington. When Tampa Bay won its first and only Super Bowl in 2002, the team surrendered its first and second-round picks in the 2003 NFL Draft in the trade for head coach Jon Gruden the offseason prior.
The Buccaneers’ exact needs won’t be known until free agency next month, but given the fact that pending free agent Ndamukong Suh, who had 1.5 sacks in Super Bowl LV, is 33 years old, defensive tackle could be a priority, in addition to EDGE rushers, such as Jason Pierre-Paul, who just turned 32 and has one year left on his contract, while Shaquil Barrett, who had a sack and numerous pressures against Patrick Mahomes, is 28 and is slated for free agency.
Running back could also be an area of focus in the draft as the team could opt to not re-sign either Leonard Fournette or LeSean McCoy, leaving just Ronald Jones II, who will be entering the final year of his rookie contract, and Ke’Shawn Vaughn, last year’s third-round pick, as the only backs on the Bucs’ roster.
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
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