The Buccaneers have clearly decided to invest heavily in defense this year. With Da'Quan Bowers and Adrian Clayborn the Bucs have added two large, physical and powerful defensive end to their defense. In the past two drafts, the Buccaneers have now selected defensive linemen in each of the first and second rounds. Think defensive line is a priority? The Bucs clearly want to get back to the days when their defensive line was one of the most feared units in the NFL and they could take over games. WIth Da'Quan Bowers, Adrian Clayborn, Gerald McCoy and Brian Price they certainly have the talent along the defensive line to do just that. All of these players have their own problems they need to overcome: Gerald McCoy has to recover from a minor injury and improve his strength. Brian Price has to recover from a hip injury and improve his technique. Bowers has to recover from a knee injury and, well, get on the field. And Adrian Clayborn has to work on his pass rushing skills. But all of these guys have the physical talent to absolutely dominate in the NFL. If they all put it together this will be a truly fearsome unit, but even if only half of them do the Bucs will still have a potent defensive line.
After building the defensive line, the Buccaneers turned their attention to the linebackers. Mason Foster was the pick, and the Washington pick should do well in the Bucs defense. The instinctive linebacker has the ability to do very well in the Bucs defense, and could fit at all three linebacker position. He may fit best in the middle or on the weak side, where he'd be given the ability roam and locate the football, something he does very well. He's not the strongest or the fastest linebacker and he's not athletically gifted, but he's a pure football player who loves the game. While he can get swallowed up by bigger blockers, if he's paired with a good defensive line that doesn't need to be a problem. Overall, I think Foster looks like someone you can plug into a defense and he'll be a solid but unspectacular but very good cog for a decade.
All three of the drafted players also fit with the Bucs' strategy of adding leaders to the team. All three of them were team captains in college, and Adrian Clayborn was even a two-time team captain for Iowa. Clearly these are players that have shown they can lead teams, and have shown that they are motivated and love the game of football. The Bucs are trying to build a locker room filled with these guys, and this is especially evident this year.