analyzes the top players in the 2020 NFL Draft with its position previews. Mark Cook previews the tight ned position with a comprehensive look at what the Bucs have and what they need at tight end, a detailed list of this year’s top prospects, and Scott Reynolds offers up the annual Bucs’ Best Bets – one early round pick, and a pick from the later rounds.

What The Bucs Have At Tight End

Of all the units on the Buccaneers, this may be the deepest group. Led by two capable starters in O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate, both tight ends are experienced and have been at times productive. The only question now is how much better can they be with Tom Brady at the helm and another year in Bruce Arians’ offense?

Bucs TE Cameron Brate - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs TE Cameron Brate – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

In reserve, Tampa Bay has Anthony Auclair, who serves primarily as the team’s blocking tight end in lieu of a traditional fullback. Tanner Hudson, last year’s preseason sensation, returns on a one-year deal, and behind him the Bucs have Codey McElroy and Jordan Leggett.

In 2019, Howard was inconsistent at times but still put up 459 yards on 34 receptions, but only one touchdown, down from the five he had in 2018. He has been rumored to be a trade candidate as the 2020 NFL Draft draws near. Brate had 36 receptions for 311 yards and four touchdowns for the Buccaneers and took a pay cut this offseason in order to stay in Tampa Bay.

What The Bucs Need At Tight End

The Buccaneers appear set at the tight and position although they could maybe look at add a tight end to be used as a blocker in case of injury again to Antony Auclair who is coming off of foot surgery.  Other than that, Tampa Bay appears loaded with pass catching tight ends, a position Brady was known to favor and utilize in his previous 20 seasons with New England.

The 2020 Draft Previews + Bucs’ Best Bets is presented by Edmonson Electric & Security – the official smart home and security company of

For the past 40 years, Edmonson Electric has proudly served central Florida with electric services and now proud to add state-of-the-art “Smart Home” technology and security systems to it’s roster. Whether it’s surveillance cameras, home theaters, or smart lighting, Edmonson Electric & Security is automating your dream home. Click to find out more about controlling, monitoring and securing your home.

Tomorrow starts now. From home automation controls to structured-wiring and surveillance systems, Edmonson Electric & Security has the team to keep your home current. Call 813.910.3403 for additional information or visit

Control. Monitor. Secure.

Click The Next Page For The Top TEs

Share On Socials

About the Author: Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, the beach and family time.Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 year ago

Nice well researched article but maybe an exercise in futility, I would take a 10-1 bet that the Bucs do not draft a tight end, even if we trade OJ Howard, which I think would be a mistake. OJ should take off with Brady throwing to him, but there does seem to be an issue with him. He seems bright enough in interviews, he is supreamely talented for the position but the production isn’t there.

Alldaway 2.0
1 year ago

Bucs should take a flyer on Moss on day three IMO.

1 year ago

OJ is a great TE, as long as you don’t ask him to run good routes, catch the ball effectively, or block well! Other than that, he’s great! Cut him like Jameis! It can be a two-for!

1 year ago

I’ve done a bunch of practice drafts at

Several times I have ended up with Stanford TE Colby Parkinson with the Bucs last pick even though I was not targeting a TE.

I like Parkinson for 2 reasons.
1. He is from Stanford so you know he is smart. Add that to Brate from Harvard no offense will be too difficult for them to pick up.
2. He is an end zone monster. At 6’7″ he will be a great red zone target.

1 year ago

Even if they do trade Howard, I do not think they will draft a TE. Auclaire (given recovery) is a blocker which is largely what they used Howard for also. Brate is largely a receiver like Hudson. I am not sure Hudson knows what blocking is, but he is a solid receiving weapon. I think looking at Howards recieving yards is a mistake. The Arians Offensive is designed for receivers and running backs for catch yardage. If you are behind Evans and Godwin as options, you are not going to get a lot of looks. The real question is how… Read more »