Round 5: South Florida DT Deadrin Senat
6-1, 305 – 5.12 – Senior
The Buccaneers will need to make some decisions about their interior defensive line in the offseason. Will Tampa Bay re-sign 31-year old defensive tackle Clinton McDonald, who had five sacks last year? What about seldom-used nose tackle Sealver Siliga? Will the team decide to clear some salary cap room and save $4.875 million by cutting defensive tackle Chris Baker, who was a huge disappointment as a free agent signing a year ago?
With Pro Bowler Gerald McCoy turning 30 in February, the Bucs need to start looking towards getting younger at the position. Tampa Bay drafted Stevie Tu’ikolovatu in the sixth round a year ago and he spent his entire rookie season on injured reserve. But more help is needed up front, and the Bucs don’t have to look far to get it.
Senat was a three-year starter for the Bulls where he showed steady statistical improvement each season. Known as a run stuffer, Senat recorded his first career sack in USF’s bowl win during his junior season. He posted three more sacks during his senior year before going out with a bang with a career-best, three-sack effort against Texas Tech in USF’s bowl win.
Despite being a marked man and often double-teamed upfront, Senat recorded 66 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss and six sacks as a senior. He had a 12-tackle, 2.5-sack effort against Houston, and a 13-tackle, half-sack game against Tulsa, in addition to his Birmingham Bowl exploits.
Senat’s South Florida Career Defensive Stats
2017: 66 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, 6 sacks
2016: 49 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, FF, PBU
2015: 45 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, FF, PBU
2014: 18 tackles
Senat, who has been USF’s Defensive Player of the Year over the last two seasons, is one of the strongest players on the Bulls on the team, has squatted 675 pounds before. That has allowed him to anchor well against the multiple double-teams he faces.
“Deadrin has what we call brute strength,” USF defensive end Greg Reaves told the Tampa Bay Times. “I don’t think really anybody in the conference can block him. Basically, you single-block him, just leave the center on him, I don’t think they really have a chance.”
Not only does Senat, who has accepted an invite to the East-West Shrine Game, has physical toughness, he also has mental toughness. He lost his mother at an early age due to a spider bite, and his father died of cancer while he was a junior in college. Senat’s ability to stuff the run and his improvement as a one-gap penetrator would be useful in Tampa Bay.