PewterReport.com began a new offseason feature last year, giving readers an opportunity to get their questions answered about the Bucs by the PR staff. Today, Mark Cook answers five questions taken from Twitter submissions and our message boards using the hashtag #PRMailbag.
Question: When are we going to hear more about Devante Bond? We know almost nothing about our future starter.
Answer: That’s a good question. I would like to know more about him as well. Unfortunately when a player is on injured reserve, he is off limits to the media. Therefore, while he saw Bond often last year, we weren’t able to really interview him. What we do know is the staff is very high on him, as evidenced by the team not attempting to re-sign Daryl Smith, or adding anyone via free agency. But don’t count out Adarius Glanton who will push Bond this offseason and into preseason. Glanton, who I spent some time with off the field this spring, looks to be bulked up a little, which is important when playing the SAM linebacker position, as he deals with the tight end more often than not.
Bucs LB Devante Bond – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
We will truly know how the team feels about their third linebacker depth after next week’s draft. If they don’t add an additional one, then you can pretty much bet they have Bond penciled in. The thing that impressed me most about Bond last year was his involvement. He took 2016 and used it essentially as a redshirt season, participating in meetings and film study, and was also on the sideline home and away, watching and charting. Others players we have spoke to also noticed Bond’s involvement.
Question: If the Bucs take a running back in the the first 4-5 rounds, is that worse news for Doug Martin or Peyton Barber?
Answer: It depends on the type of running back they select. For instance, a Christian McCaffrey, or back with a similar skill set, could actually be bad news for a player like Charles Sims more so than Martin or Barber. Even a Dalvin Cook, although I would tend to guess Cook would have more of a Martin-type role on this team – though I feel he is a better pass catcher. There is no way to know exactly how the running back situation plays out, but we will have a little clearer picture following the draft in a couple weeks.
Question: What do you think will be the best WR option in round 2 of next week’s draft?
Answer: Without knowing how it plays out in the first round it is impossible to tell. If a run of receivers starts in the first round, then you could see some third rounders move into the second round, or the opposite effect, where some mocked to be first rounders, fall into the second round. Ohio State’s Curtis Samuel and Eastern Carolina’s Zay Jones could be targets as both are projected as second rounders. A player that I like who is most likely a second rounder is Chris Godwin out of Penn State. Goodwin runs a 4.42 and has a nice 6-1, 209-pound frame and was an excellent red zone target for the Nittany Lions. USC’s Juju Smith-Schuster is another player who could be a Bucs target. He has a large catch radius and has a chance to move up to the second round when it is all said and done.
Question: How many “prime time” games do you envision having in this upcoming season?
Answer: Had the Bucs made the playoffs it would probably be more, but just guessing, I would say three is a fair expectation. Each team plays on Thursday night, so there is one for sure. I would suspect a matchup with the Falcons is a good possibility, but you have to think the Bucs hosting the Patriots is also entertaining to the networks. One of the young guns in the league, Jameis Winston, taking on what many feel is the the greatest of all time in Tom Brady.
I remember as a kid growing up and how excited I was waiting on the schedule to come out each year, and honestly not much has changed. I love going through and circling the wins and losses like you most likely do as well. I will say, now as a media member, the prime time games aren’t as exciting as it was was I was a casual fan on the sofa. By the time the game is over and we get out of the locker room, it’s midnight, and then we have to start writing. I know no one is feeling sorry for me though – and yes, it is a great gig. My Dad likes to tell people, “Mark gets paid to watch football games.” I tell them that isn’t true. I get paid to write about them while he is sound asleep. But again, you won’t hear me complaining.
Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey – Photo by: Getty Images
Question: Reported this week by PFT, a team in the teens guaranteed they would take McCaffery if he’s there, chances of it being Bucs?
Answer: I suppose it could be the Buccaneers, but if it is, I would be a little surprised. We just haven’t heard much at all from our sources on McCaffrey. But three teams that could be in play are the Eagles, Ravens and Colts. I really think the Eagles might be that team, if the report is in fact accurate. McCaffrey looks to be the perfect fit for a Doug Pederson offense. But either the Ravens or Colts could possibly be in the mix. Both need running backs, and both have top tier quarterbacks, at least from a salary standpoint.
We believe the Bucs interest in Cook has dropped a little from what we are hearing, so if McCaffrey is there at No. 19, Tampa Bay could pull the trigger, but we just haven’t heard any buzz from inside the building.
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com 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 email@example.com
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