Bucs’ Best Bets: Guards/Centers
Bucs’ Best Bet – Rounds 1-3: Boston College G Chris Lindstrom
In terms of being a pure guard, Lindstrom is considered the top prospect in this year’s draft as he was a four-year starter at right guard at Boston College. Facing Clemson, North Carolina State, Miami and Florida State once a year during his college career shows he’s battle-tested to play in the pros.
Lindstrom reminds some of Tampa Bay’s Ali Marpet in that he’s an agile, aggressive run blocker that has the ability to get to the second level and finish. Lindstrom is also adequate in pass protection and had a dominant week at the Senior Bowl that solidified his stock as a second-round pick. If he’s there near the top of the second round, the Bucs might have a hard time passing up on him. Tampa Bay interviewed Lindstrom at both the Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine.
Bucs’ Best Bet – Rounds 4-7: Oklahoma G Dru Samia
Opinions are mixed on Samia, who is regarded as a second-round pick by some NFL scouts and a fourth-round pick by others. Samia has spent time at right tackle, but earned All-Big 12 honors at guard over the last two years. The 6-foot-5, 305-pound Samia is a tough, athletic offensive lineman, and he had a solid week at the Senior Bowl where he was one of the top guards.
Samia has quick hands and quick feet and good explosion upon initial contact in both run and pass blocking. He’s blocked for the last two Heisman Trophy winners in Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray, as well as NFL backs like Joe Mixon, Samaje Perine and Rodney Anderson. The Bucs interviewed Samia at the Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine, and offensive line coach Joe Gilbert attended his pro day. If he lasts until the fourth round, Samia would be a steal for Tampa Bay and immediately contend for the starting right guard spot.