Tampa Bay Buccaneers: What they really got in this draft class

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2021 NFL Draft (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2021 NFL Draft (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
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First Round (12): Vita Vea, Defensive Tackle

The Buccaneers have been looking for a disrupter defensive tackle to put next to Gerald McCoy for the past few seasons, and they may have finally found one with their first round pick as after the trade back they selected Vita Vea.

Who while playing in 40 games while starting the last 18 at the University of Washington collected 99 tackles, fifteen tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks, and five pass breakups. The 2017 season is where he shined playing in all thirteen games he totaled 43 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, and four pass breakups. Winning the PAC-12 best defensive lineman award (Morris Trophy), the PAC-12 defensive player of the year, and selected All PAC-12 First team. At the NFL Combine he put in a great workout with 41 reps on the bench press and at 6’4” 347 pounds he ran a 5.1 forty with a 1.76 ten-yard split.

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Playing with a powerful first step and the ability to disrupt the middle of the offensive line with enough power to make tackles on ball carriers while being blocked. With pure strength and speed for his size to catch the offensive linemen off guard knocking them back and giving him the ability to get to the ball carrier quickly. He may not get to the quarterback much but he is very disruptive in the line often being double teamed which will allow rushers to get to the quarterback.

In Vea the Buccaneers add two words at defensive tackle “Power” and “Disruption” to the middle of the defensive line, and finally giving Gerald McCoy a disruptive run stopping defensive tackle next to him (after the failure of Chris Baker) to help take the double teams off of him and should cause more of a pass rush.

With off season acquisitions of Vinny Curry and Jason Pierre Paul at defensive end Beau Allen and Mitch Unrein at defensive tackle and the return of defensive end Noah Spence from injury Pro Bowler Gerald McCoy, and … now add Vita Vea this defensive line has gone from a team weakness to a finally team strength.