Round 2: Louisiana Tech OLB Jaylon Ferguson
6-5, 271 – Senior

Previous Pick: Maryland SS Darnell Savage, Jr.
Tampa Bay takes advantage of a deep and talented group of pass rushers with Ferguson, who has first-round production, but slips to the second round due to average athleticism, evidenced at his pro day where he had a 4.82 time in the 40-yard dash and an awful 8.08 time in the three-cone drill, needing to do it at least seven times to record a score because he kept slipping and falling. Ferguson is not a player with great flexion and the ability to bend. He’ll never be compared to the likes of Florida State draft prospect Brian Burns, or Tampa Bay’s own Jason Pierre-Paul, but there is still a lot to like about Ferguson.

Finishing his career with an FBS-leading 17.5 sacks, Ferguson became the NCAA’s all-time leading sacker with 45 sacks, breaking the record held by future NFL Hall of Famer Terrell Suggs. Ferguson had a productive season as a freshman before a breakout campaign as a sophomore where he recorded 14.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. After an underwhelming junior season where he became a marked man, Ferguson did the wise thing by returning to school, adding some size and strength and having a monster senior season.

“Sometimes you worry about a player coming back of Jaylon’s status and what he turned down,” Louisiana Tech head football coach Skip Holtz said. “Sometimes players come back to protect something. I think Jaylon’s not coming back to protect something, he’s come back to prove something.

“I think he’s a guy that came back for the right reasons. He didn’t come back just to elevate his draft status. He talked about coming back. He talked about having four bowl rings and wanting a conference championship. … The NFL is not where you go learn what to do. You go show what you can do. I think he realizes he had a little growing and developing to do, I think it was an incredibly mature decision on his part. He wants to get a degree, he is one class away. I think those are all incredible reasons for him to come back.”

Ferguson’s Louisiana Tech Career Defensive Stats
2015: 35 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, 2 FFs, 1 PBU
2016: 49 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 14.5 sacks, 3 FFs, 2 PBUs, 2 FRs
2017: 38 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 7 sacks
2018: 65 tackles, 26 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks, 3 PBUs, 2 FFs, 1 FR

There was some controversy about Ferguson being disallowed to participate at the NFL Scouting Combine this year due to an arrest during his freshman season for engaging in a fight at a McDonald’s. Safarrah Lawson, Ferguson’s agent, issued a statement on Ferguson’s behalf back in March to address the situation.

“Jaylon is a great person who made a mistake 4 years ago before he started playing college football. He was involved in a scuffle that resulted in him being charged with misdemeanor simple battery. He received a deferred judgment and $189.00 fine, a proper punishment for a fight between two teenagers. Since that day Jaylon has been a fine and upstanding student athlete that personifies the things we are trying to teach our young people today.”

Ferguson has told NFL teams that his role in the altercation was in self-defense, and he began that process by meeting with teams at the Senior Bowl where he had a good week of practice and had a sack in the game. Ferguson showed heavy hands and very good speed to power with his bull rushes, long arm and inside moves in Mobile, Ala.

“He’s got a great drive, which is the No. 1 thing you look for in pass rushers,” Ferguson’s pass rush coach Chuck Smith told The Advocate. “He can move very well from side to side. He’s tall. He’s long. He’s the prototype everybody wants.”

Ferguson has been compared to Marcus Davenport, another long edge rusher that was drafted in the first round by New Orleans last year after playing a smaller conference school at UTEP. He can record sacks in bunches, evidenced by 13 multi-sack games in his four years for the Bulldogs. He does have good film against the likes of Power 5 schools like Mississippi State, LSU, South Carolina Kansas State and Texas Tech over his career. Ferguson recorded two sacks against Mississippi State last year and one against LSU.

Tampa Bay had Ferguson in for a Top 30 pre-draft visit and see him as a player that could eventually replace Pierre-Paul or Carl Nassib, who is in the final year of his rookie contract. The Bucs love the fact that he can get to the quarterback rushing from the left and the right side of the line, in addition to his varied arsenal of pass rush moves.



Click Below For Tampa Bay’s 3rd-Round Pick

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Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]
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Ken Grant

This would be a disaster.

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BigSombrero

Devin White plays and tackles high, which is a concern. I won’t deny his speed and tenacity. I prefer a DE/OLB here.

Im not sold on Jaylon Ferguson, but I love the fully grown game that Zach Allen brings. I would take Allen in round 2. No way he’s there in round 3.

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Theerealdiehl

I like Allen too. Maybe we could trade down to the middle of the second and get him? I think early second round where the Bucs are drafting may actually be a bit of a reach. I think he’s a mid to late 2nd rounder – very doubtful he’s a 3rd.

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BucRy

No OL til later rounds? Yeah, let’s just completely ignore fixing the OL which was a disaster last year..terrible mock.

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Theerealdiehl

Agreed. The most glaring need on this team and easiest fix I think would be drafting a RG in the 1st or 2nd rounds. I’m even for a guy who’s a tweener and plays RG for a year before moving out to RT. But, waiting till the 3rd or later is a bit risky (see last year’s reach for Alex Cappa LOL).

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BucRy

I too worry about whites bad tackling habits, he may have gotten away with tackling high in college but we know that won’t work in the NFL..the good thing though is that he can fix it, it may be a bad habit of his but it is fixable. White should still be a solid pro, but I’d much rather draft a pass rusher at 5..I still say trade down if Bosa, Allen, Williams are gone..if we do stay, and those 3 I mentioned are gone, I’d be ok with taking Oliver too..can’t wait til the draft! Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb… Read more »

Theerealdiehl

Judging by a few other commenters, I’m glad I’m not the only one who sees flaws in White’s game (albeit a very good game overall). People draw the comparisons to Patrick Willis and Ray Lewis, but those two were drafted 11th and 26th overall, respectively. Therefore, I think 5 is a little early. If they’re gonna draft him, I think 7-10 is a good range and perhaps pick up another 4th or so. Just don’t blow that pick like the Roberto Aguayo trade.

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fredster

Rather see a RT taken 2nd rd than another LB. don’t like this draft at all other than white at 5.

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destinjohnny

This would actually be a solid draft.
I think it will be Oliver or white.
We would be stout up front after this draft but still have the worst secondary in football

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chefboho

I’d love to see…
1st round Williams, Allen, Bosa, or Oliver IF they don’t trade down
2nd round lindstrom, guard, BC
3rd round rock yo sin, DB temple
4th round Gerald Willis, DT, Miami
5th round best available linebacker
6th round best available linebacker
7th Travis homer, RB Miami.
Of course none of this will happen but it’s still fun to speculate. Lol. Let’s go draft!

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Theerealdiehl

I’d hate to have Willis on this team. He seems like a cancer. Nobody wants a player who steals their own team mates stuff (google his freshman year at Florida).

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Sheldon

White and hurd are the only picks I like. Smh you guys need to stop mock drafting. It’s making us angry because you guys suck at it.

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Dman

Scott, how do you ignore the Oline. Ridiculous. Know you love Devin White, but if you choose MBL over Dline in round 1, you’ve got to go after Oline in round 2. We need to replace the right side and their are solid picks to be made in round 2 to start that process.

And I’ll take Dontavious Russell over Byron Cowart every day of the week.

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dexfields22

This is a solid draft..u really can build a defense with this.Zach Allen and Jaylon Ferguson two powerful guys in the same draft.

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twspin

Everybody is assuming AZ is going QB with that 1st pick. And they might just surprise everybody. If they do, the whole draft changes. Luv your picks here though Scott.

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revfish

A sincere comment for the pewter report staff. After reading the article that Jason Licht needs to hit his second round pick, isn’t this a bit of a stretch and gamble going for a person who is in the fbs and seems to have had a bad combine? Doesn’t a solid offense of lineman Or someone else seem to be a much safer pic to help the team in need

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Ja'crispy

So many people think White is going to be the pick. I just dont see that happening. With so many good DE/DT to choose from its got to be D-line. Williams/Allen/Oliver.

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LIBucsFan93

There are rumblings that Arizona isn’t going to take Kyler Murray #1 now. If this happens and no team trades up with the 49ers, Jets or Raiders for a QB then it’s possible that Bosa, Q Williams, Allen and Oliver are gone. What do the Bucs do then? Take Devin White or Brian Burns(reach) or trade back if a team comes calling. The Bucs selecting a premium Defense player is contingent on a QB going in the top 4. I really don’t see that happening. This QB class is good but there aren’t any great ones. Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb… Read more »

Spitfire

I don’t really know what will be satisfying with this Draft… I don’t mind having all those guys on our team. I feel like we need another Lineman in the 2nd, but then you want another Dlineman. I honestly think the only way to be somewhat satisfied is to trade and pick up an extra 2nd and 3rd. I would be fine with trading down and grabbing someone like Burns mid Round 1. Then we can grab 2 Olineman, a Dlineman, and a CB or MLB in rounds 2 and 3. Then we can go BPA on Day 3… But… Read more »

nybuccguy

White has HUGE bust potential. Drafting him at 5 would be an absolute disaster. We draft Bosa, Allen, William’s, Oliver, or trade down. Those are the ONLY options we should consider.

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Ron Potter

Kinda surprising mock but I like it. Devin White will be excellent as an every down player and QB of our defense! Ferguson and Allen in the same draft certainly stocks up our trenches. Kinda surprised you have Allen dropping to the 3rd round and while rare, PR isn’t the only one who has projected this. I like it. The later round picks is highlighted by the OT Udoh and Dean. Kinda late to be addressing our right side of the line as bad as Benenoch and Cappa were last year but our defensive line is looking barren if we… Read more »

Bucsfan1983

You strikeout immediately with the first pick SR, White at 5 is insane. Just as insane as your boy Vea over James.

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JustaBuc

Man, I hope this isn’t what we come out with 🙁

Ty for the final mock! Let’s see what we get!

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seat26

I will be satisfied with White, but we can do better.

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rrsrq

Love this draft, this would set the defense for years to come, you hope that the tackle from Elon, Caleb Benenoch or Alex Cappa develops to solidify the right side of the line. But White, Ferguson and I do not believe Allen falls to the the 3rd, but if he does you pounce. This may not be a star studded defense but you know it will be tough and gritty. Both Allen and White have that grit that will transpire to the entire defense. However, would like a possible small trade back, still land white and add Nasir Adderley. Rate… Read more »

surferdudes

My first pick would be White all day, this defense needs a leader more then anything and this kids the best in this draft, Second round, RT, I saw enough of Dotson last year. Third, fourth, I’m getting my DE, DT. Fifth on BPA leaning towards both lines of scrimmage.

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bmayhew

Let me start by saying while i do think White will be a great player in the league i really hope we get Williams or Allen with our fist pick if they’re available. I don’t think lbs have the impact on a defense like they used to. The only inside backer in the league i think his team dies without him is kuechly. Other than that they all seem interchangeable to a degree. I also worry about our transition to a 3-4 for our des paul and nassib. I might not understand how they’ll be used but i dont see… Read more »

matador

If Licht waits until round 5 to go OL he should be fired immediately. SR clearly doesn’t get it at all or, like the talking carrot’s puppets, is just trying to smooth the ground for the mistake his idol is about to make. If this was Licht’s first Bucs draft instead of his last, I’d understand it. But as much as anything this shows the compounding damage of bad drafts over time, you are forced to fill holes each year instead of building on strengths. Think about what one key injury would mean. Unless Kappa turns into Marpet 2.0, Smith… Read more »

mgchat76

So who is going to start 3T in place of McCoy? Licht’s really not going to address RG, the weakest position on the team? The one bright side to this draft would be that it would seal Licht’s fate, and the Bucs may get a competent GM next season.

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Donnyd

Love this draft except the LB at 5. I guess IF Williams & Allen are both gone AND no one will trade down, THEN Ok, otherwise no thank you. If we trade down & get LB D. White then sweet! The rest I really think would be a coup but get them & extra picks to add maybe a RB to Pewter’s mock all the better. Wouldn’t mind either ove of those Memphis RBs or both if with extra late picks that would be sweet. 1 is a really good back the other would be a good KR & 3rd… Read more »

GrayBalls

Honestly, this draft kinda blows. White will more than likely be one hell of a player, but I’m not sold on him…. At 5, that is. The only part of this I would even get a little excited over is Allen and Hurd in rounds 3 and 7, respectively. Other than that….. PASS

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martinii

Based on the above post we are all over the board in terms of draft consensus. I am not a big White fan and have believed much of his popularity is smoke. Not sure how you can quick fix a defense from 4-3 to 3-4 and plan to win now. The real mystery will be solved in camp when we find out if BA and Bowls can coach up hidden gems already on the roster. At this point I am resolved to Best Available with emphasis on Pass rush and Running game. Would rather see proven OL in second, RB… Read more »

surferdudes

The only player I would take over White is Williams, but I still believe White will be able to do more over all for our defense. There are a lot of good DT’s, and DE’s in this draft, and we pick high in each round. You’re not going to get a White type LB after pick ten, or maybe not until another 5 to 10 years. White has lead the best conference in football the SEC in tackles, that’s a beast. Our defense has no heart, or soul, they fold like a deck of cards. We need Whites leadership to… Read more »

LVBUC2

Don’t mind White. If the Bucs don’t grab White, how far does he fall maybe the Cincinnati or father. Why not drop down a little pick up picks and still get your man.

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scubog

The criticism of what Pewter Report thinks might play out and NOT what they hope happens is absolutely hysterical and so predictable. Ok, I get that folks have been programmed to think you don’t draft an inside linebacker, guard, safety, or in our case, kicker at the 5 spot. For me, if White is the best player, I’m fine with it. I’d rather have the top linebacker if he’s better than the 4th best defensive lineman. I’ll always be a BPA proponent because drafting purely for need, like you’re filling out some Concentration game board with the missing pieces, will… Read more »

fanofdabucs

Licht needs to find a eventual replacement for either McCoy or JPP in round 1. Williams, Allen, Oliver or Sweat. Williams or Allen at five or Oliver or Sweat after trading down. If both Williams and Allen are gone at 5 and the Bucs can’t trade down, then I think you have to consider Oliver or Sweat at 5 unless you truly believe White is in the same class as Lewis and Willis. If White ends up being a great leader and has a career anything like Lewis, then all these experts saying drafting White at 5 is “insane” will… Read more »

dbenn2012

Replacements for McCoy, JPP, David & Jensen all need to be addressed as salary age doesn’t weigh well based on salary and age. Based on rumors and pundits, McCoy will be traded or released (agree a trade scenario would most likely be a package deal with a pick to move up a round, but think if it happens it will more likely from 7th to 6th or a team will just wait for the release – assuming the need is out there and McCoy sees an opportunity to make the playoffs in the next year or two at 1/3 to… Read more »

Pit of misery

I like Sweat at 5 if not White and I don’t think Hurd will last that long?

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76bucsfan46

Best Defender available in 1st. I also see Nasib becoming your 5 tech DE.2nd rd I like the kid from BC at 5 tech DE or the RG from BC or Center from NC state. 3rd rd best RB or CB available. 4th rd whichever position we didn’t address in the 3rd rd.5th rd LB or DL. 6th and 7th rd Best player available depth.

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Horse

.My belief is the Trenches will fix most everything, and Scott picks don’t support my belief.
Where is the REAL 3-4 Edge Rushers on this team; surely not Pierre, Gholston, Nassib as they thrived in a 4-3 and haven’t been tested in the past as legit 3-4 players?

I’m hoping we trade down several spots and resolve much of the trenches as possible in the first two rounds.
Go Bucs!

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Makski13

I really like Allen, Udoh and the CB Dean a lot!! Not sure about the rest. I also don’t care what his production was, I am NOT taking a smaller school guy who is SLOW and could not do the 3 come drill without falling in the 2nd round!! That pick HAS to be a hit, not a reach. Also, I like the big Evans clone at WR, but our group is already really strong and there has to be a better option available with that pick. Maybe get him if he goes undesired. Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb DownSubmit Rating00… Read more »

76Buc

Ah, scubog remembers the admiral.

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76Buc

I hate the first two rounds that PR picked this time. White is D. Jackson (read diva) in a linebackers body. We all love money, but this kid is off the charts discussing before he is drafted.
Either Bosa, Allen, or Williams should be there at 5. If not – trade down.
I would like to see Meathead package some picks and trade up into the second round and select …Braden Mann, the Ray Guy award winning punter out of Texas A&M.

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twspin

The big reason I like White is..he is sideline to sideline and plays tough, hard, physical and fast. We need this!
Our LB’s have been fair to good. But White is physical..kinda like Derrick Brooks was. At some point, this Buc Defense is going to have to Ruck up and play nasty. White is a great start.

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EricNV

No replacement for McCoy?? Are you kidding me?

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drdneast

What lunatic would get into a brawl with someone Ferguson’s size. Count me out.

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plopes808

I’m a big fan of the emphasis on the front 7, but there’s no way we can wait till round 5 to address the Oline. Address the Oline in the 2nd-3rd round and this draft would be pretty solid. Not a big fan of White at 5 either, trade down a few spots to pick up some extra picks and I’d be fine with him there. Hopefully one of the big 3 falls but if not, we need the extra picks.

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Spartan01

Trade Down With Miami For 2nd and 3rd Round picks:
1 – Christian Wilkins DT
2a – Zach Allen DE
2b – Justin Layne CB
3a – Bobby Evans OT
3b – Mecole Hardman WR
4 – Tre Watson LB
5 – PJ Johnson DT
6 – Tony Pollard RB
7 – Derick Roberson DE

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chefboho


So let me get this straight, you’re basing a kids entire life on something he did when he was 18? If that was the case you probably would’ve hated drafting Sapp, or Jameis, or hell, 1/3 of the NFL players they’ve been in trouble in their lives. Willis’ last two years at Miami we’re squeaky clean and he dominated. This is the fourth we’re talking about here, not the first or second round.

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Theerealdiehl

Don’t get me wrong, I believe in second chances. Speaking from experience, I’ve done many things in the past that I had to pay for and learn from. But to me, stealing from your own team mate is like stealing from your own family. It takes a special kind of cancerous person to do that. Perhaps, there’s more to the story and if there is then set the record straight. I wish him the best, but YES it’s the 4th round. This organization can’t afford to miss in any of the rounds this year and all it takes is one… Read more »

Julian Jordan

1 Ed Oliver, DT Houston
2 Justin Layne, CB Michigan State
3 Vosean Joseph LB Florida
4 Trayveon Williams RB Texas A&M
5 Austin Bryant DE Clemson
6 Brett Rypian QB Boise State

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Gruden4President

As pro ready as Devin White is, we need to trade down if Allen, William’s, or Bosa are gone and pick up an extra 2nd rd pick. Drop back a few spots and still take White or Ed Oliver. Than we can address OL ,Dl in the 2nd if White is still the pick or OL, CB if Oliver is the pick. Still like Allen in the 3rd.

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