The mock drafts are beginning to come in fast and furious and it appears no one is quite sure what to do with the Buccaneers. Bucky Brooks decided they need to stay defensive.
Without the free agent activity that will come in March, it’s tough to figure out what direction a team may lean come draft night. In the Buccaneers’ case, they could go in a multitude of directions. Most fans want to see them get a weapon on offense for Jameis Winston. With no bonafide number two receiver to help Mike Evans or the running back position in flux, those are the two most popular choices for Bucs fans early on. Plus, those are “sexy” positions that sell jerseys and have YouTube highlight reels people love to watch.
That may not be what the team needs most, however.
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We’ve seen a few mocks that have the Bucs going with the likes of wide receiver John Ross, wide receiver Corey Davis, and tight end O.J. Howard. In Bucky Brooks’ first mock, he has them going with a record setting defensive end out of the SEC.
Derek Barnett – Defensive End – Tennessee
Barnett set the record for most sacks in Tennessee history with 33, breaking the mark of 32 set by Reggie White – and he did it in only three seasons. The 6’3″, 265 pound standout already has rumors swirling that his game won’t translate to the NFL or that scouts don’t believe in his NFL abilities.
Brooks selected the defensive end stating, “Adding an edge rusher to the lineup should be a priority for a team on the cusp of playoff contention”.
That being said, he chose Barnett to the Bucs with Dalvin Cook, Corey Davis, Taco Charlton, O.J. Howard, Cam Robinson, and Solomon Thomas all still available. Say what you will about Barnett’s skill set, records, what have you, if Dalvin Cook slips to nineteen I don’t see the Buccaneers passing on him.
These mock drafts will continue to evolve once free agency kicks in and teams begin to fill needs. Until then, it’s merely an exercise of trying to match a player at a position of need with a team that he would fit on. Barnett certainly does that, but given how this mock shakes out, Barnett seems extremely unlikely given Cook and Davis – among others – are still on the board.
Would you be good with the Buccaneers taking Barnett? Sound off in the comments!