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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will play their first preseason game of the year against the New England Patriots at Raymond James Stadium on Friday evening.
At this point, it might be difficult for some fans to gauge what type of team the Bucs will field this season. They do, after all, have a total of 87 players on their active offseason roster.
The Bucs’ current roster does not include quarterback Jake Plummer (a former second-round pick) and defensive end Charles Bennett (a former seventh-round selection), who are on the Did-Not-Report list and Injured Reserve list, respectively.
Some players originally entered the league with the Bucs while others are castoffs from other teams who are trying to live up to the potential they were believed to have coming out of college.
So, how much talent and potential does Tampa Bay’s roster currently have?
This installment of Flynn’s Focus attempts to answer these questions by breaking down the Bucs’ roster by how each player originally entered the National Football League.
Out of the 87 players on their current roster, 37 (42.5 percent) of them originally entered the NFL as first day draft picks.
Of that amount, 16 (18.3 percent) of the players are former first-round draft selections. That number was 17 until the Buccaneers released defensive end Simeon Rice on July 26.
Twenty-eight (32.1 percent) of the players on Tampa Bay’s roster entered the NFL as undrafted free agents. While this number appears to be high, it’s quite common for NFL teams to use a dozen or two undrafted free agents to fill out their offseason rosters each year.
It’s too early to make 53-man roster predictions, but it’s probably safe to say that out of all of Tampa Bay's first day picks, all but two players – cornerback Sammy Davis, a former first-round selection, and quarterback Chris Simms, a former third-round pick, likely will make the team’s active roster this season.
If that is indeed the case, the Bucs’ 53-man roster would be made up of at least 35 (66 percent) former first day draft picks and 15 (28.3 percent) former first-round draft selections.
Listed below are Tampa Bay’s current players, the way in which they originally entered the NFL and how many seasons they’ve spent in the league.
How much potential and talent do the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have on their offseason roster? Decide for yourself.
FIRST-ROUND PICKS (16 total)DE Gaines Adams (Rookie)TE Anthony Becht (8th season)WR David Boston (8th season)LB Derrick Brooks (13th season)CB Phillip Buchanon (6th season)DL Kevin Carter (13th season)WR Michael Clayton (4th season)CB Sammy Davis (4th season)WR Joey Galloway (13th season)WR Ike Hilliard (11th season)DT Chris Hovan (8th season)RG Davin Joseph (2nd season)OT Luke Petitgout (9th season)DT Ryan Sims (6th season)TE Jerramy Stevens (6th season)RB Carnell Williams (3rd season)
SECOND-ROUND PICKS (7 total)FB Mike Alstott (12th season)CB Brian Kelly (10th season)S Sabby Piscitelli (Rookie)LB Barrett Ruud (3rd season)G Arron Sears (Rookie)OT Jeremy Trueblood (2nd season)LB Jamie Winborn (7th season)
THIRD-ROUND PICKS (7 total)FB B.J. Askew (5th season)CB Ronde Barber (11th season)LB Quincy Black (Rookie)QB Chris Simms (5th season)TE Alex Smith (3rd season)DE Greg Spires (10th season)WR Maurice Stovall (2nd season)
FOURTH-ROUND PICKS (8 total)S Will Allen (4th season)P Josh Bidwell (8th season)G Dan Buenning (3rd season)S Tanard Jackson (Rookie)QB Luke McCown (4th season)WR Chad Owens (1st season)RB Michael Pittman (10th season)CB Alan Zemaitis (2nd season)
FIFTH-ROUND PICKS (8 total)DE Patrick Chukwurah (5th season)DL Julian Jenkins (2nd season)C/G Matt Lehr (7th season)S Donte Nicholson (2nd season)DL Greg Peterson (Rookie)S Jermaine Phillips (6th season)G Jeb Terry (4th season)C John Wade (10th season)
SIXTH-ROUND PICKS (7 total)CB Torrie Cox (5th season)QB Bruce Gradkowski (2nd season)DT Jovan Haye (3rd season)LB Adam Hayward (Rookie)TE Keith Heinrich (5th season)LB Cato June (5th season)DL Ellis Wyms (7th season)
SEVENTH-ROUND PICKS (6 total)RB Kenneth Darby (Rookie)OT Chris Denman (Rookie)RB Lionel Gates (2nd season)CB Marcus Hamilton (Rookie)WR Mark Jones (4th season)WR Paris Warren (3rd season)
UNDRAFTED FREE AGENTS (28 total)WR Jovan Bouknight (1st year)K Matt Bryant (6th season)DT Darrell Campbell (1st year)LB Antoine Cash (2nd season)C/G Jonathan Clinkscale (1st year)G/T Anthony Davis (4th season)P Sean Douglas (Rookie)LS Andrew Economos (2nd season)QB Jeff Garcia (9th season)WR Chas Gessner (1st season)RB Earnest Graham (4th season)CB Carlos Hendricks (1st year)TE Matt Herian (Rookie)DT Tim Jones (1st year)TE C.J. Leak (Rookie)OT Jabari Levey (1st year)WR Chad Lucas (1st year)C/G Enoka Lucas (Rookie)C Nick Mihlhauser (1st year)LB Ryan Nece (6th season)LB Sam Olajubutu (Rookie)S Kalvin Pearson (3rd season)T Donald Penn (2nd season)DE Jeremy Pittman (Rookie)OT Dennis Roland (1st year)WR Kyle Smith (1st year)FB Byron Storer (Rookie)DE Greg White (1st year)
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