Now that the Super Bowl is behind us, it's officially time to look ahead and see how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers can make meaningful improvements this offseason to ensure they're celebrating this time next year.
Free agency is going to be a lot more fun and interesting than it was last year, with more money to spend and a team being a far more attractive potential destination. Baker Mayfield and Mike Evans need to be re-signed, and Antoine Winfield Jr should be handed a blank check to become a Buccaneers for life, but those aren't the only major areas the team needs to address.
Jason Licht has made a habit about of nailing the NFL Draft, bringing in an incredible class of rookies last season that helped carry the team to an NFC Divisional Round appearance. This year the draft will again be ripe for Licht to work his magic and there are a few guys who can help keep his streak going.
Round 1 (26): Jackson Powers-Johnson, C/Oregon
Things felt a lot simpler when the Bucs were projected to pick higher in the draft, but there's still some excellent talent to be had in the back half of the first round. Really, the only downside to Tampa Bay picking No. 26 is that they're out of the running for a top quarterback, but that question has already been answered.
What the Bucs need to do is figure out a way to build an offensive line that can properly protect Baker Mayfield and whoever might succeed him down the line, and that starts with Jackson Powers-Johnson.
He has an 80s action movie name and the talent to back it up. He explodes off the ball and is one of the best run-blocking centers in the country.
Tampa Bay's offensive line has been lost without Ryan Jensen, as there's a direct line to be drawn between his season-ending knee injury and problems upfront. Tom Brady bore the brunt of that in 2022, but the run game has been consistently terrible for two straight seasons. Powers-Johnson offers the Bucs a chance to replace Jensen at center and plug the middle of the offensive line with a stud who can pass-protect and help alter the run-blocking scheme in a way that might get it to work.
It's a tough job, but Powers-Johnson seems like a really good bet to make.