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The 2009 NFL Draft is approaching and Pewter Report unveils a revised version of its first seven-round mock draft for the Buccaneers to reflect the trading of Tampa Bay's second-round pick to Cleveland in exchange for tight end Kellen Winslow II. This version will appear in Pewter Report's March Free Agency Issue, which will be mailed this week. The PDF version of the magazine will also be available on-line in days.
New defensive coordiantor Jim Bates’ unit is the big beneficiary during the first two rounds of this mock draft, but the Bucs come away with three offensive players on the second day of the draft.
ROUND 1 – DE LARRY ENGLISH Northern Illinois The Buccaneers need another defensive end to line up opposite Gaines Adams and rush the passer. English can play left or right end and is a complete defender who can produce sacks and stop the run. At 6-foot-2, 254 pounds, English will likely have to add another 10 pounds to hold up in the NFL, but he brings passion, professionalism and a strong work ethic that should help him have an immediate impact as a rookie. English had 31.5 sacks, 54.5 tackles for loss and eight forced fumbles for the Huskies. Simply put, he’s a stud. It would be ideal if Tampa Bay could trade back in the first round to acquired him and try to pick up another mid-round pick to essentially replace the second-rounder that the team shipped to Cleveland as part of the trade for Kellen Winslow II. English’s stock slipped a bit due to a slower than expected 40-yard dash time (4.82).
ROUND 3 – CB MIKE MICKENS Cincinnati New defensive coordinator Jim Bates loves to play bump-and-run man coverage, and Mickens has the physical nature, swagger and enough quickness to excel in Tampa Bay. There are some concerns about his speed, but the same thing was said about Ronde Barber. Mickens is a pure cover corner who has picked off 14 passes, returning three for touchdowns. He has also broken up 45 passes in his his three years as a starter. Mickens measured 5-foot-11, 175 pounds at the Senior Bowl, which was smaller than expected. He’s coming off a torn meniscus and may fall into the third round.
ROUND 4 – WR MIKE WALLACE Ole Miss Wallace averaged 18.9 yards per catch for the Rebels, catching 101 passes for 1,910 yards and 15 TDs in his career. He possesses great speed (4.33), playmaking ability and a set of improving hands. The 6-foot, 189-pound Wallace can also return kickoffs and had two touchdowns in the return game at Ole Miss. His stock is on the rise after a great Cotton Bowl and Senior Bowl.
ROUND 5 – LB JASON WILLIAMS Western Illinois One of the best sleeper prospects in the draft, Williams was a real force for the Leathernecks with 42.5 tackles for loss, 14 forced fumbles and 13 sacks during his college career. The 6-foot-1, 243-pound Williams can run under a 4.5 in the 40-yard dash and be a special teams demon while he masters the linebacker position in the NFL. Bucs linebackers coach Joe Barry recently worked him out at his pro day.
ROUND 6 – OT LYDON MURTHA Nebraska The 6-foot-7, 306-pound Murtha started at right tackle and has the frame and athleticism to be a swing tackle behind both Jeremy Trueblood and Donald Penn. Murtha has a tendency to play too high at times, but has a mean streak and is an aggressive blocker. He was one of the top performers at the Combine, running a 4.89 in the 40-yard dash, which was the fastest time for any offensive lineman. Murtha was also one of the best performers among linemen in the 3-cone drill (7.06), the 20-yard shuttle (4.34), the broad jump (9-foot-2) and the vertical jump (35 inches).
ROUND 7 – RB GARTRELL JOHNSON Colorado State With Cadillac Williams’ future in doubt, the Bucs could use another young, powerful back. Johnson rushed for 1,476 (5.3 avg.) and 12 touchdowns as a senior. The 5-foot-10, 219-pound bruiser is a violent runner similar to that of Earnest Graham and Derrick Ward, who will both be 29 this year, and he has great hands. Although he didn’t time well (4.67), Johnson has a nice burst out of the chute and is a one-cut runner familiar with zone blocking schemes.
ROUND 7 – SS MARCUS McCLINTON Kentucky McClinton is a hard-hitting safety that has the speed to cover ground in the secondary. He picked off 10 passes and forced nine fumbles for the Wildcats. The 6-foot, 208-pound McClinton has suffered through some injuries due to his physical playing style. He’s a fiery type of leader who should be a good special teams player in the NFL.
ROUND 7 – DT MYRON PRYOR Kentucky The 6-foot, 319-pound Pryor has added 10 pounds since the offseason, but still ran a 5.08 in the 40-yard dash. Pryor is strong and quick, and has all the physical tools, but was an underachiever with an inconsistent motor. In his career, he notched 11.5 sacks, six forced fumbles and returned a fumble 72 yards for a TD against Louisville, showing off his athleticism. Pryor has an upside.
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