Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Looking back at the number seven pick
By James Yarcho
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have the seventh overall pick in the draft Thursday night. What are some players picked at that spot in recent memory?
The goal of the NFL draft is to fill your team with as much talents as possible to prepare your franchise for the present and future. If you’re picking in the top ten, as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are, you’d like to expect that whoever you pick is a perennial Pro Bowler and a potential Hall of Famer.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way. You look back at some big time busts over the years, especially in the top ten – JaMarcus Russell, Trent Richardson, Tim Couch – and you realize that the draft is as much research, planning, and evaluating as it is luck. As Jason Licht likes to point out, he’s never missed on a guy because of skill, he’s missed on guys because of the neck up. If there’s one thing you can’t scout, it’s a player’s mindset.
So with the Buccaneers picking at seven, it’s time to go back and look at some other players in recent years also taken at that spot.
2017 – San Diego Chargers – WR Mike Williams
2016 – San Francisco 49ers – DE DeForest Buckner
2015 – Chicago Bears – WR Kevin White
2014 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – WR Mike Evans
2013 – Arizona Cardinals – G Jonathan Cooper
2012 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – S Mark Barron
2011 – San Francisco 49ers – LB Aldon Smith
2010 – Cleveland Browns – CB Joe Haden
2009 – Oakland Raiders – WR Darrius Heyward-Bey
2008 – New Orleans Saints – DT Sedrick Ellis
Not exactly a barn-burner group of guys here. Some can be viewed as busts, some worthy of that top ten pick, some where the jury is still out. At the end of the day, it’s not a slam dunk position no matter how you shake it out.
Over the last ten draft, both the Buccaneers and 49ers have picked in this spot twice and both are looking at a 50/50 split. Barron didn’t work out for the Buccaneers, but he’s playing well with the Los Angeles Rams so he isn’t exactly a bust. With the 49ers, Buckner hasn’t exactly lit the world on fire. In fact, he had half the sacks in his second year as he did in his rookie season.
It doesn’t matter who the Buccaneers take here. Quenton Nelson, Derwin James, Denzel Ward, Derrius Guice – it doesn’t matter. They are going to pick the guy with the most talent that helps this team immediately but it’s up to the player to actually show up and do what he was drafted to do.
Next: Final Mock Recap and Reaction
At the number seven pick, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers certainly aren’t in a position of historic success in the draft. All they can do is hope the player they take turns into an Adrian Peterson (seventh overall in 2007) or a Joe Haden rather than a Darrius Heyward-Bey or Kevin White.