PewterReport.com analyzes the top players in the 2019 NFL Draft with its position previews. Taylor Jenkins previews the offensive tackle position with a comprehensive look at what the Bucs have and what they need from the tackle position, a detailed list of this year’s top offensive tackles, and Scott Reynolds offers up the annual PewterReport.com Bucs’ Best Bets – one early round pick, and a pick from the later rounds.
What The Bucs Have At Offensive Tackle
For the time being, the Bucs are relatively set at their starting offensive tackle spots, barring injury. Demar Dotson will presumably continue to start at right tackle in 2019 and, fresh off of his new three-year contract, Donovan Smith is locked down to start at left tackle for the immediate future.
Behind Smith and Dotson, the Bucs are young and relatively thin when it comes to depth at the position. Should Dotson or Smith leave the field, as of now, the team is left with the combination of Michael Liedtke, Cole Boozer and, tackle-turned-guard-turned-back-to-tackle, Caleb Benenoch, and perhaps Alex Cappa, who will cross-train at right guard and right tackle. It’s likely that Tampa Bay bring in another tackle, either through a free agent signing or the draft, to either compete at camp or prepare for a future starting spot at right tackle.
What The Bucs Need At Offensive Tackle
As mentioned before, the Bucs are young and shallow when it comes to depth at the tackle position, especially with the departure of Leonard Wester. Liedtke is average at best, while Boozer is just 24-years-old with limited NFL experience. Benenoch has had most of his work at guard since being drafted out of UCLA.
With the signing of Earl Watford to ideally battle Cappa for a chance take over the right guard position, it allows Benenoch to move back to his natural right tackle spot and help with depth there. Cappa will also get a shot at right tackle in training camp, especially if Watford performs well at right guard.
Not only will the Bucs need depth to compete and possibly fight for a spot backing up the team’s two starters, but with Dotson moving into the twilight of his career, it’s time that the Bucs begin to groom their next starter at right tackle. It’s going to be interesting to see what Tampa Bay does to fill the area of need, but if the team finds someone that it believes can be the future at right tackle, don’t be surprised if the Bucs go after him in this year’s draft.
This year’s PewterReport.com’s 2019 Draft Previews + Bucs’ Best Bets and Draft Videocast are presented by Edmonson Electric & Security – the official smart home and security company of PewterReport.com.
Watch Pewter Reporters Scott Reynolds, Mark Cook, Taylor Jenkins and Matt Matera, as well as other special guests, live on-air via PewterReport.com from the team’s headquarters at One Buccaneer Place beginning on Day 1 of the 2019 NFL Draft at 7:00 p.m. ET.
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