The Buccaneers improved by four wins between 2014 and 2015 and while that wasn’t enough to allow coach Lovie Smith to keep his job, it was a sign that they hit on their decision to draft quarterback Jameis Winston with the first overall pick of last year’s draft.
Now they need to fill in other weak spots around the team so that they can continue to improve and make a return to the postseason for the first time since 2007. Linebacker Kwon Alexander has identified one area where he believes the team should be focused on this offseason.
“We need to get some more guys to, you know, to get some push on the quarterback,” Alexander said on WDAE, via JoeBucsFan.com. “I think that’s what we’re going to be drafting this year, defensive ends. We had great defensive ends this year, but we need a little more help. So whoever we can get, you know, we’re going to need that pressure to get Cam [Newton] and, you know, try to get to the Super Bowl this season.”
Alexander’s mention of Newton makes sense since the Bucs are also in the NFC South and because of what we saw the Broncos pass rush do to the Panthers in Super Bowl 50. Building a disruptive pass rush is hardly a new model for defensive success in the NFL, but that performance reinforced the point in a way that should lead to plenty of company for the Bucs in the search for help this offseason.