2021 NFL Draft: Buccaneers in position for a great night

Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2018 NFL Draft, (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2018 NFL Draft, (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

The Buccaneers are in a great position for the 2021 NFL Draft tonight.

The 2021 NFL Draft is here, and the Buccaneers are picking 32nd. This is not a familiar place to be in the draft order, but the Bucs aren’t going to complain about it. After re-signing every major free agent and looking ready to make another run at the Super Bowl, Tampa has a unique level of freedom.

No team in NFL history has been as successful at retaining a Super Bowl team as this one. Usually, after winning the Lombardi Trophy, teams will lose players to free agency and new opportunities, and the team will regress to some level.

Instead of following the norm, the Bucs were able to keep all of their starters, their key depth pieces, and just about everyone else. Now, instead of going into the draft to replace lost contributors, the focus can switch.

Jason Licht has been a staunch proponent of drafting the best player available rather than the position needed during his career as the Bucs’ GM. This has led to some frustrating selections over the years, but the best player available is exactly what the Buccaneers need tonight.

Tampa doesn’t have to be zeroed in on any position. None of the players they select over the next few days will start, or even be significant contributors for that matter, during the season, so going in with any positional expectations makes little sense.

The Buccaneers can draft anyone they want in the first round, just as long as they are the best player available. This player can be a project piece, immediate impact player, or even someone that Licht and Bruce Arians can push the starters now.

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The possibilities are endless for the Bucs on a night where so many teams are biting their nails, and it feels good to finally be the team that can’t make a bad selection.

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