Of the three positions here, cornerback is strongest, and least likely to be meddled with this off-season. Even still, there’s a lot of uncertainty around this group heading towards the 2017 season. As a group the corners were solid in 2016, but not spectacular aside from Brent Grimes.
Grimes turned in one of the best seasons of his excellent career, knocking away a league-leading 24 passes and collecting four interceptions. Rookie Vernon Hargreaves had well documented struggles throughout most of the season but showed some signs of life down the stretch. Jude Adjei-Barimah was suspended for four games late last season, but the Buccaneers seem to like his prospects going forward. With Ryan Smith changing from safety to corner and Josh Robinson a special teams ace that the team would like to re-sign, it seems like the group is largely going to be kept in tact for next season.
Beyond next season however, the crystal ball is blank. Brent Grimes will be another year older and a free agent, and if Vernon Hargreaves struggles again the team could be completely without any promising cornerbacks. Dre Kirkpatrick, Stephon Gilmore and Morris Claiborne are all young free agents available that, if the Buccaneers are feeling proactive, could be brought in as the heir-apparent to Brent Grimes. Also keep an eye on the later rounds of the draft, as the Bucs could look for a project to mold.