YOU TALKIN’ TO ME – APRIL 10
By Leo Haggerty & Rob Kriete

WHAT POSITION SHOULD THE BUCCANEERS TAKE WITH THE 32ND PICK IN THE 2021 DRAFT?

Brooklyn, the good news is that Tampa Bay won the Super Bowl.  The bad news is that means they have the last pick in each round of the draft and that equates to #32.

With that being said, I’ll take that outcome every day of the week and twice on Sunday.  The Lombardi Trophy trumps all when it comes to the National Football League.

Big Apple Guy, I’m going to give you two possible scenarios.  The first is look for the Bucs to trade out of the 1st round for as low as a top 10 pick in the 2nd round as well as an additional selection or two.  Here’s why I say that.

When an NFL teams sets up its draft board, it will have one column of first-round selections down to where they are slotted.  For example, my beloved Eagles will be picking #12 due to a trade with the Dolphins.  So, if you could get a peek at the “War Room” in Philadelphia, there will be a dozen players, one through 12, that would be set apart from the rest of their ratings.

When Commissioner Roger Goodell puts the Birds on the clock, they can immediately see who their highest-rated player is on their 1st round board.  The fun, or should I say debate and sometimes heated, begins if there’s more than one player still there.

I say that to put this out for your perusal.  When the Pewter Pirates go on the clock, I will bet you the house payment that there will be at least six, and possibly as many as a dozen, names on the Bucs 1st round board to chose from.

Brooklyn, let’s say there are 8 players still eligible.  By doing the math, as I always encourage everyone to do, the Buccaneers can trade down to as low as the 8th pick in the second round and still get a first-round talent in their mind.

Ok, that doesn’t happen and we have to go to my second possibility because Tampa Bay has to make a pick.  “Leo’s Draft Rule #1” is you work from the ball out and I would recommend to General Manager Jason Light and Head Coach Bruce Arians to follow that hypothesis.

The defensive line looks set.  The offensive line, with T Donovan Smith getting a little long in the tooth, in my mind is more of a need.

My recommendation, and I’m talkin’ to you, is for the Bucs to go offensive line. What do you have to say to that, #1 Mets fan?

First, Low Ball, the strategies you present are, quite honestly, awesome! I love to argue with you on all of these issues, but I cannot here. Your argument on how to trade picks and building a team from the ball and move out from there is clear and sound.

Additionally, the idea of using the pick to solidify the offensive line is also a good one. However, that pick would most likely not have an immediate 2021 impact. There is no Tristan Wirfs-caliber lineman available for Tampa Bay.

Low Ball, I like the Bucs to draft someone for their secondary. Prone to the long ball for several seasons now, the Buccaneers would be wise to draft a strong cornerback. The top few will most certainly be off the draft board by the time Tampa Bay makes the 32nd pick. This puts pressure on GM Jason Licht to pick one that will impact the 2021 team. Winfield was a great pick for the Bucs last year to shore up the safety spot, but this team can use some more help especially at corner. A strong draft for the Bucs, Low Ball, will need to include an impactful defensive player, with the secondary needing the most help.

Great discussion, Low Ball! See you next week.