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All right, draftniks. You know that Pewter Report is the undisputed king of Tampa Bay Buccaneers draft coverage. We've listed players, such as quarterback Josh Freeman (2009), wide receiver Dexter Jackson (2008), offensive lineman Jeremy Zuttah (2008), quarterback Josh Johnson (2008), defensive end Gaines Adams (2007), linebacker Quincy Black (2007), wide receiver Maurice Stovall (2006), quarterback Bruce Gradkowski (2006), middle linebacker Barrett Ruud (2005), cornerback Torrie Cox (2003) – among others, at their respective positions in the Bucs' Best Bets sections of Pewter Report's annual Bucs Draft Preview.
As the 2010 NFL Draft approaches, Pewter Report's resident draft experts, Scott Reynolds and Charlie Campbell, have spent countless hours watching over 12 college games per week and scouting which prospects would look good wearing red and pewter next year. With over 500 college games to review dating back over the last four years and countless scouting contacts throughout the NFL, Reynolds and Campbell are armed with the inside scoop needed to put together these scouting reports on players who might fit Tampa Bay's schemes on offense and defense.
The casual football fan already has a good deal of knowledge on likely first-round draft prospects, such as Texas quarterback Colt McCoy, USC safety Taylor Mays, and Florida linebacker Brandon Spikes. These regular Pewter Insider features on PewterReport.com will scout out players that are candidates for the Buccaneers to select in next April's draft.
Will one of these players wind up being the next Ruud, Zuttah or Johnson? We'll all find out next April when Tampa Bay is on the clock.
FLORIDA STATE CORNERBACK PATRICK ROBINSON
VITAL STATS: Seminoles cornerback Patrick Robinson checks in at 5-foot-11, 194 pounds. The Miami, FL product Robinson, reportedly runs the 40-yard dash at the 4.4 seconds mark.
Robinson has seven career interceptions seven games into his senior season. Six of them came in his sophomore season. Robinson recorded interceptions in five straight games that season, and since that time teams have been avoiding throwing the ball in his direction. He also has put his ball skills on display with 17 passes defended in his career. His seven PBUs in 2009 is a personal best, and he will likely finish the season in the double digits. For his career he has two forced fumbles, a blocked kick, and 86 tackles. Robinson had an interception returned for a touchdown called back on a questionable call against North Carolina a few weeks ago.
WHY HE COULD BE A RED AND PEWTER PLAYER
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a real weakness at the cornerback position. Aqib Talib is set as a long-term option at left cornerback, but right corner Ronde Barber is 34 and won't play forever. Elbert Mack has struggled in 2009 as the team's nickel corner, and beyond him the Bucs don't know if rookie E.J. Biggers will prove to be a potential player in 2010 when he returns from injured reserve. The Buccaneers cornerbacks have gotten beat in coverage throughout 2009, and they need to find some players to pair with Talib.
Robinson has all the tools NFL teams look for in a cornerback. He is an excellent man corner that has the speed and hips to be able to run with receivers downfield, and in-and-out of breaks. His sophomore season showcased the ball skills that Robinson has, and since that time the opposition has attacked the other Seminole cornerbacks. Robinson has the tools to do it all as an NFL cornerback regardless of defensive system.
If the Buccaneers go back to a Tampa 2 system or a primarily zone scheme for their cornerbacks after this season, Robinson would still be a good choice. He is very effective in zone coverage. Robinson has good instincts, and does good of job reading-and-reacting. His speed allows him to close on receivers quickly to make the tackle or break up passes. Robinson is a good form tackler that does not shy away from defending the run. At the same time, Robinson is not overtly physical in defending the run and breaking into piles.
TOUGHEST TRANSITION IN TAMPA BAY
Robinson has gotten a reputation as a player that relies too much on his athletic ability. Sources tell Pewter Report that Robinson has to improve the way he practices, studies, and trains in the offseason. Robinson is viewed as a player that checks out at times. He is a quiet kid and was suspended for being part of Florida State's academic cheating scandal that numerous FSU players were apart of, including Bucs linebacker Geno Hayes. Robinson is said to be protecting himself, and his draft status because his team is losing. Sources say that Robinson is trying to guard his interests by avoiding injuries and mistakes rather than selling out on the field for a losing team.
RECORDS AND SUPERLATIVES
Leads all active Seminoles in interceptions. With two more interceptions Robinson will be in the top 20 all-time for Florida State. Is a candidate for All-ACC and All-American honors in 2009.
HIS BIGGEST GAMES
10/18/08 at Georgia Tech one interception, two kickoff returns for 44 yards, one PBU
11/17/07 vs. Maryland one interception, three tackles, 1 PBU
11/3/07 at Boston College one interception, one forced fumble, three tackles
10/20/07 vs. Miami one interception returned 32 yards, two tackles
10/6/07 vs. North Carolina St. one interception returned 16 yards,
At this time many are projecting Robinson to go in the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft. Robinson is considered one of the top cornerbacks available, but looks like he is more of a late first-round pick. After juniors declare for the draft Robinson could be pushed down further. Late in the first round and into the second round would be great value to land Robinson.
Click here for a replay of the play against North Carolina where Robinson's interception returned for a touchdown was not overturned.