With the Buccaneers sitting at No. 7 in the first round of the draft and a widespread expectation that as many as four quarterbacks could be taken in the top five picks, the Bucs could end up getting a great player.
So who will it be? Via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, coach Dirk Koetter recently suggested that the secondary will be an area that the team targets in the draft.
“We said at the end of the year, the No. 1 thing we needed to do was get Brent Grimes back and we did that,” Koetter said, via Stroud. “And then, also, Vernon Hargreaves finished the year on [injured reserve]. When you have those two guys coming back plus the experience that Ryan Smith‘s got and Justin Evans coming back at safety — all that said, now that the defensive line has had so many additions, I would think secondary is logical to think that would be an area of target in the draft. And again, I think it’s a strong group in the secondary in this year’s draft class. I know I’ve watched a bunch of guys and there’s a lot of guys I like.”
That doesn’t mean that the Bucs will definitely be taking a defensive back at No. 7, but if four quarterbacks go in the top five picks, and if the two non-quarterbacks are Penn State running back Saquon Barkley and N.C. State defensive end Bradley Chubb, Alabama defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick could be sitting there for the plucking.
Per Stroud, the Buccaneers recently hosted Chubb, Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson, Washington defensive tackle Vita Vea, Florida State safety Derwin James, Louisville cornerback Jaire Alexander and LSU cornerback Donte Jackson. Whichever way they go, the Bucs will benefit from the possibly run on quarterbacks, emerging with a player who could help elevate the franchise.