Buccaneers: Biggest apparent strength is actually a weakness

Mike Evans, Tom Brady, Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Evans, Tom Brady, Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /

Do the Buccaneers have enough depth at wide receiver? 

If you asked this question about the Buccaneers at the start of the season, you likely would’ve been laughed out of the room. Tampa already had the best trio in the league, and depth players like Scotty Miller, Tyler Johnson, and Jaelon Darden were bonafide stars in the making.

Unfortunately, for various reasons this season, Tampa has needed this depth, but it has rarely helped in the anticipated ways.

Antonio Brown started the season out hot, but various injuries and a recent suspension could keep him off the field until the playoffs. Scotty Miller has also missed the better part of the season with an injury after entering the scene in a huge way at the end of last season.

Despite all this talent, Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are still the only pieces of this group that contribute on a consistent basis right now.

This should be expected when you have two All-Pro receivers and a tight end that is on the same level when healthy, but it is still surprising that no one else has stepped into that third role in Brown’s absence.

Tyler Johnson and Jaelon Darden have not run away with the third or even fourth jobs this season when given the chances, which runs counter to many of the reports before and during training camp.

This is proven best by the fact that Breshad Perriman has already moved into the third role after just a few weeks on the team.

The Buccaneers desperately need another receiver to step up, but the inconsistency from this group could have the team looking at the position with a valuable pick again in the upcoming draft.

The good news for the Bucs is that Gronk serves as a reliable WR3 and even Leonard Fournette gets a comparable number of targets, so Tom Brady certainly is not on an island, but the depth for the Bucs needs to step up at the receiver position before a problem begins if another injury occurs.

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