It has been a good rookie year for Kendell Beckwith. It comes to a close on Sunday, so wouldn’t it be fitting for him to have one last productive day before his second year rolls around? Many, including myself, were confused to see the LSU product drafted by the Bucs when they traded back into the third round. He definitely was going to make a difference for some team’s defense, but it certainly didn’t seem like Tampa Bay needed another linebacker.
However, you obviously can’t have too much talent at any given position. So, adding Beckwith wasn’t anything to be upset about. The 23-year-old quickly climbed through the ranks in training camp, worked through some early struggles in the preseason, then turned into a consistent contributor for Tampa Bay. He is tied for fourth on the team in tackles and his 56 solo tackles are tied for second on the team.
Beckwith can make an impact on Sunday, aiding in stopping Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara out of the backfield. Or maybe it’ll be tracking tight end Coby Fleener. Regardless, Beckwith is one of the few Tampa Bay defenders that appears to be fully healthy and contributing on a consistent basis. His connection with the Saints, of course, is unique. The only NFL game he attended as a kid was a matchup between the Bucs and Saints at LSU’s Tiger Stadium. He attended with his aunt and uncle, who were Bucs fans. Now, he will play against New Orleans for the second time as a key member of the Tampa Bay defense.
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