The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will likely look to add a quarterback in the middle or late rounds of the 2013 NFL Draft, and looking through the possible selections, it’s almost impossible to predict who will fall into the fourth and fifth rounds or later. With so many quarterbacks fluctuating between first round and third round status depending on the website or scout or expert consulted for their opinion, it’s possible that one of the top ten quarterbacks would slide into the middle rounds. Names like Tyler Bray, Mike Glennon, and Tyler Wilson have been floated as top 50 picks, but also could fall should all the teams needing a QB take one early, and other teams hold off on taking backups and project signal callers until later. Matt Scott, Landry Jones, and Zac Dysert are all currently listed as middle round prospects, and they all are interesting prospects, but again, depending on how the drafting of quarterbacks goes down, they may be taken early, or may hang around until later.
One prospect who will almost certainly be on the board for all of the Buccaneers’ selections is Sean Renfree, quarterback from Duke. Renfree doesn’t have a great set of career statistics, but did show consistent improvement over his three seasons as a full-time starter for the Blue Devils. He finished his college career with a 67.3% completion percentage as a senior, with 19 touchdowns and only 10 interceptions. In the history of the ACC, few players have played more often, passed for more yards, or thrown for more touchdowns over the course of a career. He has a track record of improvement, and a great mentor and coach at Duke in David Cutcliffe, who was on the coaching staffs responsible for grooming Peyton Manning and Eli Manning.
Renfree has the prototypical NFL arm, and can “make all the throws.” He looks calm in the pocket, but doesn’t have perfect footwork. He didn’t play behind the best offensive line in the nation, so his pocket presence was certainly put to the test. He reads plays well and goes through progressions, and certainly looks the part of a professional quarterback.
He’s unlikely to be a franchise quarterback, but he’s likely a solid backup in the NFL with the potential to be a serviceable starter. If none of the other QB’s available fall to a selection the Buccaneers feel comfortable with in the 2013 NFL Draft, Renfree is a late round prospect that could provide a good insurance policy for Josh Freeman. He suffers from some of the same shortcomings as Freeman, but showed improvement over the course of his college career. If he’s able to put it all together with a better supporting cast around him, he could turn out to be a surprise. If not, then the Buccaneers have spent a seventh round pick on a lottery ticket. Either way, it is the play of Josh Freeman in 2013, and not a rookie, that will shape the future of the franchise on offense.