With training camp a little over one month away, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers made sure that each of their rookies would be full participants from day one.
They did so by making sure they have agreed to terms with each and every pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. The team signed third-round pick, RB Charles Sims from West Virginia, as soon as minicamp concluded on Thursday. They also agreed to terms with second-round pick, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins from Washington, shortly thereafter.
Earlier in the day, first-round pick Mike Evans signed on the dotted line, which got the ball rolling for the rest of this rookie class.
By ensuring that there wouldn’t be any time lost due to contract issues for their new rookies in training camp, the Bucs took one of their first steps into grooming these offensive weapons into the playmakers they need to be.
Lovie Smith has repeatedly said that he believes it takes more than one running back to carry an NFL workload, and locking up Sims to a deal means that he can start taking reps as soon as training camp’s first air horn sounds.
Same with Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who is not only projected to start for Tampa Bay, but to become a red zone force. The Buccaneers have seen how Jimmy Graham has been terrorizing defenses for the Saints, so they went out and got someone who may be able to do the same for them.
Sims is locked into a four-year deal, with Seferian-Jenkins likely getting one of the same length.