Tampa Bay Buccaneers Draft Picks: Results, Analysis and Grades
Keep it parked here for up-to-the-minute updates and analysis on each of the Buccaneers' draft picks through all seven rounds of the draft, spanning from Thursday through Saturday.
As with any team who is breaking in a new general manager and head coach, predicting where the Bucs will go in this draft has been quite the challenge. Will the Bucs take a top quarterback early and trade away last year's third-rounder, Mike Glennon? Will they choose to address their biggest needs at receiver and guard first, or will the team simply take the best player available?
Rumors are already piling up, with Tampa Bay being linked to possible trade scenarios and some of the draft's biggest names.
No matter the outcome, stay with Bleacher Report for all of the details.
1st Round, 7th Overall: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
The Bucs took an offensive playmaker from Texas A&M. It just wasn't the one that many fans in Tampa Bay wanted.
Despite rumors that they were targeting Johnny Manziel, either at the seventh overall pick or in a trade down, Tampa Bay decided to address their biggest need with one of the draft's biggest pass-catchers.
At 6'5", 234 pounds, Evans has already drawn plenty of comparisons to Vincent Jackson, and he'll now get to line up across the field from him. Evans excels at putting his massive frame to good use, consistently winning jump balls and out-muscling smaller defensive backs for the ball. Evans' size and ball skills allow him to be open even when he's covered, which is an invaluable trait at the receiver position.
According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Bucs didn't even expect Evans to still be on the board at No. 7:
The # did not expect WR Mike Evans to be there at 7, so they shifted their mind to defense. Now, Evans is there. So…
While I understand the need at receiver, the depth of this year's class at the position should have afforded the Bucs to get an immediate starter in the second round, which is the only drawback I see to this pick. That being said, it's hard to blame Jason Licht and company for taking one of the top overall talents at their biggest area of need.
Though the masses in Tampa may have been clamoring for Johnny Football, Evans fills a more immediate need and will probably help Jeff Tedford sleep a little more soundly tonight.
2nd Round, 38th Overall: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington
If Bucs fans were worried that Lovie Smith wouldn't pay attention to the offense, I think it's safe to put those concerns to rest.
At 6'6", 262 pounds, Seferian-Jenkins is an impressive physical specimen who will create serious mismatches for opposing defenses. His impressive athleticism for his size will give linebackers fits in coverage, while smaller defensive backs will have a difficult time getting to the ball through his frame.
There are a couple of concerns with Jenkins, both in the health and off-field departments. A DUI arrest got his 2013 season off to a rocky start before it even began, and foot surgery kept him from participating in any offseason workouts.
It sure looks like Tampa Bay's new regime is serious about improving their league-worst offense from 2013. Seferian-Jenkins will team up Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans to give the Bucs three huge targets that should help them improve their anemic red-zone numbers.
3rd Round, 69th Overall: Charles Sims, RB, West Virginia
This pick might have Bucs fans wondering if there's an offensive guard named Charles Sims that they hadn't heard of until now.
Despite having a glaring need at guard and multiple solid options on the board at that position, the Bucs opted to add to their already overflowing stable of running backs.
Despite being one of the deepest positions on the roster, Tampa Bay continued its run of offensive skill players by adding a versatile back in Charles Sims. At 6-0, 214 pounds, Sims is one of the more complete backs in this year's class, excelling as runner, pass protector and receiver out of the backfield.
This is a head-scratcher, for sure. The Bucs still have a huge need at guard and have yet to address any depth on the defensive side of the ball, but chose instead to strengthen arguably their deepest unit. I love Sims as a player and think he's one of the best backs in this class, but the fit just doesn't make sense here.
5th Round, 143rd Overall: Kadeem Edwards, G, Tennessee State
The Bucs waited five rounds, but they finally addressed their need at the guard spot.
Edwards dominated FCS competition at Tennessee State, using his combination of size and athleticism to overwhelm opposing defenders. As with many small-school prospects, the central Florida native is still fairly raw, but he's got all the physical tools to develop into a starter.
Carl Nicks is reportedly going to be ready to return to the starting spot at left guard this season, but if he can't Edwards might get a crack at it. Even though they waited until Day 3 to fill one of their biggest needs, the Bucs got a solid prospect who will be able to contribute immediately.
5th Round, 149th Overall (from Buffalo): Kevin Pamphile, OT, Purdue
Just six picks after addressing their need at guard, the Bucs traded back into the fifth round to grab another offensive lineman.
A converted defensive end who didn't play football until his senior year of high school, Pamphile is a long, athletic tackle who impressed after taking over the starting left tackle spot for the Boilermakers in 2013. Much like Edwards, he's still raw when it comes to his technique and consistency, but he's got the frame and athleticism that the Bucs seem to be looking for from their blockers.
The Bucs only gave up their seventh-rounder this year and one of their two fifth-rounders in the 2015 draft to move back up to the top of the fifth round. After taking skill position players with their first three picks, Tampa Bay is adding solid players who will help those guys be able to do their jobs.
Sixth Round, 185th Overall: Robert Herron, WR, Wyoming
Barring any more trades, the first draft class for new Bucs head coach Lovie Smith will be offense only.
After preaching "speed in space" so far this offseason, the Bucs spent their first two picks on gigantic receivers in Mike Evans and Austin Seferian-Jenkins. But with their final (for now) pick in the draft, Jeff Tedford gets his speedster in Wyoming's Robert Herron.
A talent that many thought could come off the board late on Day 2, Herron is a fantastic value in the sixth round and should be a valuable weapon in Tedford's offense.
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