With the Buccaneers returning all 22 of their Super-Bowl winning starters, this year’s draft is essentially an opportunity to add depth, especially on the defensive line. Although defensive ends William Gholston and Ndamukong Suh are returning this season, they will both be free agents in 2022. Outside linebacker is another area to target: While Shaquil Barrett is signed to a long-term deal, Jason Pierre-Paul’s contract would make him a free agent in 2022. Pierre-Paul also played with a knee injury in 2020 and underwent offseason surgery.
Running back Ronald Jones II is another player set to become a free agent in 2022. Backed up by Leonard Fournette, Jones was instrumental in the Super Bowl victory. But Tampa Bay can look to the draft to add another running back, especially one who can also be a receiving threat, with one of its later-round picks.
The Buccaneers’ 2020 first-round selection, Tristan Wirfs, made an immediate impact in Tampa Bay. The 2021 Super Bowl champions’ storyline of the offseason has revolved around successful efforts to keep the roster intact. That starts with Tom Brady (whose 2020 campaign showed no signs of age), but the Bucs could still draft a quarterback to start training under his tutelage. Backup quarterback Ryan Griffin was re-signed, but the 31-year-old will not be pegged as Brady’s successor. With the expectation of at least two seasons left from Brady, the Bucs have time to search for his replacement, but this quarterback-heavy draft is not a bad place to start.
Click here for the entire 2021 NFL Draft order and keep reading to see who the Buccaneers take in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2021 Draft Picks:
- Round 1, pick 32 – Joe Tryon, LB, Washington
- Round 2, pick 64 – Kyle Trask, QB, Florida
- Round 3, pick 95 – Robert Hainsey, G, Notre Dame
- Round 4, pick 129 (from SEA) – Jaelon Darden, WR, North Texas
- Round 5, pick 176 – K.J. Britt, LB, Auburn
- Round 7, pick 251 – Chris Wilcox, CB, BYU
- Round 7, pick 259 – Grant Stuard, LB, Houston
Check out draft picks for other teams in the NFC South